The Gospel According to MacArthur: Examining the book The Gospel According to Jesus Pt2 (Nicodemus)

The following is a continuation in the series on the gospel according to MacArthur.  One of his first examples in the book The Gospel According to Jesus is that of Nicodemus. Let’s look to see how MacArthur’s theology interprets this story.  Note how stories like this one in the Bible seem totally different depending on certain theological frameworks. I have followed the quotes from the book with my own thoughts in ( ).”29. Cocoris, Lordship Salvation — Is It Biblical? 11. Also, Ryrie claims that repentance is “a change of mind about Jesus Christ so that He is believed and received as personal Saviour from sin.” Repentance, by this definition, has nothing to do with one’s attitude toward sin and does not necessarily result in any change in lifestyle. It is merely a christological focus. Ryrie, Balancing the Christian Life, 175 – 76. ”

(The fact that MacArthur stands opposed to this should reveal that he teaches another gospel which includes a focus on man’s works.)

“30. Those who reject the lordship position often claim that texts such as Romans 1:5 (“the obedience of faith”) indicate that believing itself is the only obedience called for in salvation. By believing in the Son, we obey the Father’s will (John 6:29). This is “the obedience of faith,” they say; it is one-time obedience to the Father, not lasting obedience to the commandments of Christ. But obedience to Christ’s authority is clearly enjoined by texts such as John 3:36 (“He who does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him”) and Hebrews 5:9 (“[Christ] became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation”). ”

(MacArthur is saying that ongoing obedience is necessary for salvation.)

Part 2:

“Unbelievers do make false professions of faith in Christ, and people who are not truly Christians can be deceived into thinking they are.”

(Lets examine though why professions might be false. A person could fake a religious conversion for personal gain. A person could trust in the wrong object or god for salvation. A person could hear about the right God but try to be saved by faith plus works. A person could try to “pray a prayer” for salvation because someone else is and have someone then tell them that they are saved. These are all possibilities but it is not a possibility for a person who hears the gospel and trusts Christ as Savior to be a false professor – even if his life seems to have a hard time backing it up. If the person believes Christ alone to save then it is accounted to him for righteousness and he is positionally justified and sanctified. One day that person will receive a glorified body because he is now a child of God. )

Referring to Nicodemus:

“His words, always tailored to the individual’s needs, never failed to puncture an inquirer’s self-righteousness, unveil wrong motives, or warn of false faith or shallow commitment. Jesus’ meeting with Nicodemus in John 3 is an example of this.”

(False faith is unbelief. Jesus did not want Nicodemus’s commitment. He wanted him to know how to be born again.)

“Nicodemus, then, stands as an illustration of inadequate faith. His mind accepted to some extent the truth of Christ, but his heart was unregenerate.”

(The object of faith has to be explained – verses 3:14-17)

“The Pharisees were so enamored with the law and religion that when Christ came offering grace and salvation to even the grossest of sinners, they would not receive Him.”

(It’s funny how LS advocates do essentially the same thing. They don’t receive him without adding in works. They perceive that accepting Christ by grace through faith is too easy. They tack on tests of works to determine if one is sincere or genuine.)

“A teacher himself, Nicodemus understood the rabbinical method of using figurative language to teach spiritual truth, and he was merely picking up Jesus’ symbolism. He was really saying, “I can’t start all over. It’s too late. I’ve gone too far in my religious system to start over. There’s no hope for me if I must begin from the beginning.”

(I have found this from those who have been tied up in things like Calvinism. They had fully bought in and weren’t going to hear anything else or start all over to rebuild their theological foundations.)

“Jesus was demanding that Nicodemus forsake everything he stood for, and Nicodemus knew it. Far from offering this man an easy conversion, Christ was challenging him with the most difficult demand He could make. Nicodemus would gladly have given money, fasted, or performed any ritual Jesus could have prescribed. But to call him to a spiritual rebirth was asking him to acknowledge his own insufficiency and turn away from everything he was committed to.”

(No, Nicodemus needed to believe. Jn 3:16. So Jesus went around offering people hard conversions? What Christ did was the hard part – that is living a sinless life and being the sacrifice on the cross for all mankind. Each person now has to decide if they will trust Him or reject His payment for their sin.)

“The water Jesus is speaking of is merely symbolic — as it was in the Old Testament — of purification.”

(No, for a Biblical discussion of this please see: http://www.cleargospel.org/topics.php?t_id=25&c_id=258 )

“Paul refers to this as “the washing of regeneration, and renewing by the Holy Spirit” (Titus 3:5), almost perfectly echoing Jesus’ words in John 3:5: “Unless one is born of water [the washing of regeneration] and the Spirit [and renewing by the Holy Spirit], he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.”

(See the link above.)

“Salvation was never a reward for human works; it has always been a gift of grace for repentant sinners, made possible by the work of Christ.”

(False, it is a free gift for all who believe – not for people trying to turn from their sins. God also does not make people turn from their sins.)

“Even in the Old Testament, salvation was not a payoff for those who observed the law; it was a gift to those who humbly and by faith sought redemption from their sin. Yet it always meant a new start, a rebirth, a turning from sin to God.”

(Those who believed in the coming Messiah were saved. Think of Abraham as an example. Abraham did not turn from sin to God for salvation. Rom 4 says he had faith and it was accounted to him for righteousness.)

“They looked to Abraham as their father but overlooked the key lesson of his life: “He believed in the Lord; and [the Lord] reckoned it to him as righteous ness” (Gen. 15:6).

(Yes, this proves my point not MacArthur’s.)

“The message is simply that God graciously saves repentant sinners who come to Him in faith. There is no secret there, no mystery, no obscurity, and no complexity. If Nicodemus had truly understood God’s Word, he would have known that much.”

(Note the different use of the word repentance here. MacArthur means turns from sins etc – I mean change of mind.)

“Verses 11 – 12 confirm that unbelief was the real issue.”

(Yes, the problem is unbelief. The solution to unbelief is not to turn from your sins. The solution for unbelief is faith or to believe – change your mind! )

“And thus we have the starting point of Jesus’ gospel: that salvation is impossible apart from divinely wrought regeneration.”

(Not exactly. On one hand salvation does require the new birth but this new birth is a result of faith in Christ alone to save, not a result of God doing a mysterious work in us to regenerate us and make us believe, repent, persevere, and on and on as the Reformed Catholic view would have us to believe.)

“He chose an Old Testament illustration of salvation, as if to underscore His rebuke to Nicodemus for not understanding the truth of Scripture: “As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; that whoever believes may in Him have eternal life” (vv. 14 – 15). Surely Nicodemus knew that story. Why hadn’t he ever understood its truth?”

(Why indeed? Why don’t LS proponents believe it either? I personally think that it is because it is too simple for them. Man always manages to complicate things.)

“The Lord gave this promise: “Everyone who is bitten, when he looks at it, he shall live” (Num. 21:8). He did not prescribe a ritual or a chant. Just so, salvation doesn’t happen by religious ceremony. That was true when the Israelites were in the wilderness; it was true for Nicodemus; it is true today. Those who reject obedience to Christ as an element of saving faith claim that Jesus selected this illustration to show that faith is simply embracing the facts of the gospel.”

(Correction, trust Christ alone for personal salvation.)

“In ‘looking,’ ” one author writes, “there is no idea of committal of life, no thought of healing being deserved, no question concerning the subsequent life of the looker, no possibility of surrender to the object of vision.”3 Zane Hodges adds, “Could anything be more profoundly simple than that! Eternal life for one look of faith! Clearly here too we meet the unconditional gift which may be acquired by any who desires it. . . . The issue is simply faith in the divine offer.”4

(Hodges is right here and MacArthur won’t accept it. It doesn’t jive with his theologically Reformed position.)

“Is that the case? Certainly not. The issue is not faith in the offer, but faith in the One who was lifted up.”

(This is what Hodges is saying as well. )

“A more careful study of Numbers 21 reveals that Jesus was not painting a picture of easy faith. He was showing Nicodemus the necessity of repentance.”

(If you mean changing your mind yes – if you mean turn from sins – no.)

““Without shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness” (Heb. 9:22). God’s sacrificial system demanded a blood atonement, for “the wages of sin is death” (Rom. 6:23). Someone must die to pay the price of sin.”

(Yes. Why so much talk then about MacArthur denying the importance of the blood of Christ?…)

“That truth leads into what is undoubtedly the most familiar and magnificent statement in all of Scripture: “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:16).

(This verse itself goes a long way toward disproving Calvinism and the whole Reformed view.)

“What does it mean to believe in Christ? It means more than accepting and affirming the truth of who He is — God in human flesh — and believing what He says.”

(Really, if so then what verses say that? Could it be that MacArthur is adding things to faith to fit his preconceived theological construct?)

“Real faith has at its heart a willingness to obey.”

(That makes no sense. The willingness on the part of the unbeliever is to put their faith in Christ – this IS obeying the gospel and Christ.)

“There is no way to eliminate that truth from this passage.”

(Sure, this is because it is not there to begin with. JMac is making it up.)

“Jesus does not allow for “faith” that gives lip service to the truth and then goes ahead in sin.”

(Jesus does not allow for faith that is placed in someone or something else or faith that is accompanied by works. There are two natures. Even believers still have the flesh with them in which they can sin if they so choose. Think of all of the people in the Bible who were recorded as believers but still chose to sin. David, Abraham, Lot, Samson, Peter, Paul, etc.  Some Calvinistic types say – well as long as the person doesn’t practice sin – (I John 3) however, the verses used for this indicate that a person must be perfect. Not one sin – so practice is eliminated in the equation. If you are trying to keep the law you have to keep all of it. The only way to be saved is to be born again upon faith in the Lord Jesus Christ to save based on His atonement. The new man does not sin but the flesh still does.)

“Look at verses 20 – 21: “Everyone who does evil hates the light, and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who practices the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God.”

(This carries with it elements relating to sanctification – not justification.)

“Verse 36 goes even further, equating disobedience with unbelief: “He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” Thus the test of true faith is this: Does it produce obedience? If not, it is not saving faith. Disobedience is unbelief. Real faith obeys.”

(To obey the gospel is to believe it. It is not talking about how we live after we are born again.)

“He came to bring salvation not just to Israel but to the whole world.

(Sure He really did but how does this square with MacArthur’s limited atonement view.?? )

“That is the reality of redemption. It is offered not just to Pharisees, not just to the Jews, but to “whoever believes in Him” (v. 16).

(It is offered to whoever will believe in Him. All men have the opportunity to believe, not just a few selected ones. It’s sad that JMac adds to faith. He misses out on something that he actually tries to say here.)

“There is no promise of life — only a guarantee of condemnation — for those who will not identify with the sinful, dying Israelites and turn from sin in obedient faith to the One who was lifted up so that they would not have to perish.”

(No turning from sin is needed, but a change of mind on who we will trust as Savior is needed.)

With the Christmas season upon us, lets remember that Christ came to seek and to save those which were lost. All men may now believe on Him based on His sinless life, death burial, and resurrection to be their substitute payment for their sin.  Trust Christ alone for salvation today if you have not already and, if so, spread the good news to others.
God Bless.

Jim Floyd

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16 Responses to The Gospel According to MacArthur: Examining the book The Gospel According to Jesus Pt2 (Nicodemus)

  1. johninnc says:

    Jim, thanks for writing this second part to your discussion of John MacArthur. How could anyone honestly view through an LS lens Jesus’ encounter with Nicodemus? It has to be by inventing scripture that just isn’t there.

    The truth of God’s Word always trumps man’s errors.

  2. jimfloyd12 says:

    Thanks John, Calvinists have to continually work hard to invent things that aren’t there otherwise their theology is seen for the lie that it is.

    Yes, thankfully we have the Word to straighten things out.

  3. jimfloyd12 says:

    To the poster named Belgian Bible Students,

    Please take note of my doctrinal statement. I am not quite sure what your first point was but I will answer this one time. It is not open for any debate as far as I am concerned.

    You said,

    “You also say ““What does it mean to believe in Christ? It means more than accepting and affirming the truth of who He is — God in human flesh — and believing what He says.”” but by that you do not believe what Jesus says nor what his Father say, because Jesus never claimed to be God and very well knew that god was higher than him and that he could not do anything without his Father. The Father of Jesus, Who is Spirit and eternal God does not tell lies (according the Holy Scriptures), so when He said that Jesus is His “only begotten beloved son”, we should accept and believe that. Jesus is the son of God and not god the son (a whole difference).”

    Let’s be clear. What you quoted there is MacArthur’s words. However, I do not take issue with the deity of Christ. He is the God-man Christ Jesus the eternal Son of God and second Person of the Trinity who is our only possible redeemer. This is because He took on human flesh being born of a virgin by conception of the Holy Spirit yet did not cease to be God. This is non-negotiable. Any who deny that Jesus is the Christ the Son of God is antichrist. Please note this specific section of my doctrinal statement and these verses:

    God

    There is one triune God who is eternally existent, all powerful, all knowing, and the creator of the heavens and the earth. The three persons of the Trinity are the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
    Isaiah 7:14; Isaiah 9:6; John 14:9; I Timothy. 3:16; I John 5:7; Genesis 1:2.

    The Lord Jesus Christ

    The Lord Jesus Christ is fully God, took on human flesh and was born on earth of a virgin. He was perfect, lived without sin, and voluntarily gave Himself as a substitutionary sacrifice for every person by shedding His blood and dying on the cross. He was buried then rose again from the dead. This was done to pay for all sin (past, present, and future) for everyone in the world that has lived or ever will live.
    II Corinthians 5:21; Hebrews 2:9; Titus 2:14; Hebrews 10:10-14; Hebrews 9:12-28; Acts 13:38 41, I Peter 2:24; I John 2:2 and 3:5.

    1Jn 2:22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.
    1Jn 2:23 Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: (but) he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also.
    1Jn 2:24 Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard from the beginning. If that which ye have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father.
    1Jn 2:25 And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life.

    Joh 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
    Joh 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.
    Joh 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
    Joh 1:4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

    Joh 8:53 Art thou greater than our father Abraham, which is dead? and the prophets are dead: whom makest thou thyself?
    Joh 8:54 Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say, that he is your God:
    Joh 8:55 Yet ye have not known him; but I know him: and if I should say, I know him not, I shall be a liar like unto you: but I know him, and keep his saying.
    Joh 8:56 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad.
    Joh 8:57 Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham?
    Joh 8:58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.
    Joh 8:59 Then took they up stones to cast at him: but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.

    Note how Jesus claimed deity – Before Abraham was, I am. The Jews were angered by this and tried to stone him. “the Word” in John 1:1 refers to Christ. He was the one in the beginning that made all things. He is also the light of men.

    Mar 14:60 And the high priest stood up in the midst, and asked Jesus, saying, Answerest thou nothing? what is it which these witness against thee?
    Mar 14:61 But he held his peace, and answered nothing. Again the high priest asked him, and said unto him, Art thou the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?
    Mar 14:62 And Jesus said, I am: and ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.
    Mar 14:63 Then the high priest rent his clothes, and saith, What need we any further witnesses?
    Mar 14:64 Ye have heard the blasphemy: what think ye? And they all condemned him to be guilty of death.

    They were angry with Him here because He was claiming deity.

    See also:

    Joh 5:18 Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.
    Joh 5:19 Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.
    Joh 5:20 For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth: and he will shew him greater works than these, that ye may marvel.
    Joh 5:21 For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will.
    Joh 5:22 For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son:
    Joh 5:23 That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him.
    Joh 5:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

    Tit 2:13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;

    Joh 20:27 Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.
    Joh 20:28 And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.

    Joh 10:30 I and my Father are one.
    Joh 10:31 Then the Jews took up stones again to stone him.
    Joh 10:32 Jesus answered them, Many good works have I shewed you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me?
    Joh 10:33 The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God.
    Joh 10:34 Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?
    Joh 10:35 If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken;
    Joh 10:36 Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said, I am the Son of God?
    Joh 10:37 If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not.
    Joh 10:38 But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him.
    Joh 10:39 Therefore they sought again to take him: but he escaped out of their hand,

    Jesus claimed to be One with the Father – making himself God – and this angered the Jews. See a pattern yet?

    Php 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
    Php 2:6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
    Php 2:7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
    Php 2:8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
    Php 2:9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
    Php 2:10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;
    Php 2:11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

    Col 2:8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.
    Col 2:9 For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.

    Heb 1:1 God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,
    Heb 1:2 Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;
    Heb 1:3 Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;

    1Jn 5:20 And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.

    Rev 1:8 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.
    Rev 1:9 I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.
    Rev 1:10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet,
    Rev 1:11 Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea.
    Rev 1:12 And I turned to see the voice that spake with me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks;
    Rev 1:13 And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle.
    Rev 1:14 His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire;
    Rev 1:15 And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters.
    Rev 1:16 And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength.
    Rev 1:17 And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last:
    Rev 1:18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.
    Rev 1:19 Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter;

    2Jn 1:7 For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.
    2Jn 1:8 Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward.
    2Jn 1:9 Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.
    2Jn 1:10 If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:
    2Jn 1:11 For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.

    1Jn 5:7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

    So based on all of these scriptures – and there are many more that I could have quoted- please reconsider and trust Christ – The Son of God – personally for your salvation. All have sinned but Jesus Christ took the penalty for your sin. He is a risen Savior and is God – God the Son.

    Jim Floyd

  4. Pingback: The Gospel according to John MacArthur | Redeemingmoments

  5. Speedy says:

    May I comment on this statement……
    “Without shedding of BLOOD, there is no forgiveness” (Heb. 9:22). God’s sacrificial system demanded a BLOOD atonement, for “the wages of sin is DEATH” (Rom. 6:23). Someone must DIE to pay the price of sin.”
    (Yes. Why so much talk then about MacArthur denying the importance of the blood of Christ?…)

    My comment:
    Please don’t miss the subtlety here. This is one of MacArthur’s most serious errors, he goes with the NIV substitution of “death” for God’s word “blood” (in the original) by saying not only that they are synonymous but going further to literally to attack the efficacy of the blood. In his defense he carefully makes statements like “I believe in the literal blood” (to win people’s trust), but then immediately goes on to attack it’s efficacy. Just research his own response to critics regarding his denial of the efficiency of the literal blood of Christ.

  6. Speedy says:

    One statement he made particularly bothered me which was “God does not have blood” and other statements saying there was nothing special about the chemicals of Christ’s blood which can save and (sorry to quote here) that if there was something special about His literal blood, He could have cut His finger and sprayed people to be saved—- (I’m not making this up & just typing the quote is horrible!)

    Christ’s blood IS the blood of God (c.f. Ac20.28 “the church of GOD which HE purchased with HIS OWN BLOOD”), and because it was UNIQUE and PRECIOUS because it is perfectly SINLESS (no old sin nature, uncontaminated) it could be, and was, presented in heaven (Mac denies Heb9.24 & says this is heresy!)
    His Perfect precious blood was then perfectly accepted as a perfect payment for sin and stands there today (see Rev5.6 in the greek “a Lamb as though it had [JUST BEEN FRESHLY] slain”) as a perpetual powerful testimony in heaven (speaking better things than the blood of Abel –which cries condemnation— His cries No Condemnation!) and therefore the believing sinner can have a cleansed conscience on earth 1Jn1.9, Heb9.14 !!

  7. jimfloyd12 says:

    Speedy, you are right. His take on the blood was way off.

  8. jimfloyd12 says:

    As far off as MacArthur is on everything else, it really is no surprise to me when I read about his crazy statements regarding the blood. One could do a whole series of posts on that. There are certain things not to mess with theologically and the blood of Christ and the gospel of Christ are two of them but MacArthur butchers them both very very badly – like he doesn’t even get the whole concept.

    Those are good enough reason to mark and avoid John MacArthur.

  9. hollysgarcia says:

    I did an article on limited atonement today, was looking to see if you had one to link. Don’t know if you want to post this link, but all just doesn’t mean all to them.

    Had to note with interest you had ‘belgian bible students’ posting here, they shot me several really lengthy and classic textbook Calvinist proof texting arguments…

  10. Pingback: LIMITED ATONEMENT – True or False? | Redeemingmoments

  11. Cathrin says:

    I see one Thing again and again in the different comments. You want to understand and explain the hole Bible. Its good to study, to reflect, to pray about. But there will be always things we cannot understand. One Verse says this and another verse says the opposite in our Little understanding. I believe in the words of the Bible how they are written. And I accept, that some things I will never understand till I am with Jesus. I am a Little Human Being. HE loves me. HE made me. That is great and hard to believe. A giant present. But HE is God. There is one God we believe in. Not three. Jesus is also God. “The Father and me are ones.” (translated by mind. I read it in german.) And I cannot expect to understand all the things in the Bible. God is so giant. My understanding is often too Little to bring everything together. But I believe like a child. Brothers and Sisters, stop argue about things we cannot reach. The People should see the Love of Christ between us. But we have neverending discussions. Save These energy and lets tell the world the good message of Jesus.
    Greatings with love and respect from Switzerland.

  12. jimfloyd12 says:

    Cathrin, there are absolutes in God’s Word and yes we can understand them.

    Jim F

  13. Cathrin says:

    Jim, you are absolutely right. Jesus died for us and rised from death. He is our saviour and gives us eternal life with him. Only grace. But there are verses, which say, that salvation comes from God. He chooses, who he wants. In other verses is written, that we shall follow. Sounds like an own desicion. Everyone can come. For me and my little brain its hardly possible to bring that together. I simply believe it. And than there are people who say, it is God alone who saves. Others say, everyone can come and we have to make our decision. And maybe they begin to argue. Both can bring a lot of Verses to prove. Both things we can read in the Bible. I cannot say, that I am really able to understand this. But I can believe it. Both things are Right. We should more concentrate on things we can understand and say the Gospel to the unbelievers. Thats what we have to do.

  14. jimfloyd12 says:

    Cathrin,

    I see what you are getting at concerning trying to understand election. Before getting to election though it helps greatly to understand the free gift of salvation. You have to trust Christ alone as Savior without any extras such as following in discipleship. No verses state we will follow. Rather believers should follow if they are to grow properly.

    As for election, it will always be hard to reconcile it if you think it means as many do that God chooses who will or won’t believe the gospel. Instead you must see it for what it is as being more of a vocation choice for service for those that are believers. Jesus Christ was the primary “elect” one chosen to be the Savior of the World being fully God yet man. The angels were elect for a purpose in serving Him. National Israel was chosen as seen in Jacob. (see Romans 9). Believers likewise are chosen to serve their Savior. It was decided that all that would believe would indeed be saved eternally. The Bible is consistent with that. I can go through verses on it if needed.

  15. hollysgarcia says:

    Cathrin (beautiful spelling of a beautiful name by the way).

    You said, “Both things are Right”. I’d like to say there can not be two thoughts that are opposite of each other that are right. So how do we know? Sometimes it might take some time and trust in the Holy Spirit to teach us as we apply our hearts to His wisdom, and incline our ears to hear.

    God has shown us from the beginning that we could choose. Even with His elect, He set before them a choice, “Choose life, or choose death” (Deut 30:19). The Psalmist, (also of the elect), said, “I have chosen the way of truth”.

    So salvation (the act of being saved from eternal death unto eternal life) is entirely of the Lord. But believing, the condition set forth to receive the free gift of salvation, is in our free will. That is why He desires none should perish. So we have to believe what is said, and look at the whole counsel of His Word.

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