O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
This thread will be dedicated to discussing Christ, the cross, the atonement (from an Old Covenant perspective, into the New), and various other related things.
So, to get things started, I will lay out my current thinking --
Christ did not die on the cross to save Gentiles from "the death" and "sin" from a Law covenant that they were never under. However, when someone post AD70 trusts in the finished work of Christ on the cross, they pass from "darkness" into "light" and are in covenant with God (much like the example given in Exodus 12). Those in covenant with God through Christ will never face condemnation in any way via a thing called "sin." There is a natural repercussion for living outside of loving God and loving your neighbor, but nothing imputed or ongoing whereby a person is "saved" and then not "saved," then can be "saved" again.
That's a very rough outline, but I'm trying to do 100 things and I want to get the discussion started.
Dustin, I was replying to Cory, meaning that she asked all those people, but she didn't ask me, but I was replying to her anyway. ;-)
I'm glad to hear that you don't either Jerel :-)
The only reason I named Dustin, JL and Tee Bradford was because I knew their stance on Calvinism because I just directly came out and asked in the Partial/Full Pret. group on Facebook. We all began a discussion on Facebook then attempted to bring it over here which is why this discussion has been confusing for all.
The key to understanding those issues related to soteriology is rooted in God's intended purpose from the beginning. There is no question that the Bible discusses four areas that are related to the unfolding issues that pertain to 'salvation-history':
Throughout the inspired writings of the apostle Paul his use of the definite article "the" before each of the above constituent elements is significant and something that the English translators of the Bible have not been consistent in their rendering of the text, thus causing the reader to miss the intended meaning. For example, a literal reading of Romans 5:12 would provide greater detail:
"Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned—" (NKJV)
"On account of this as through one man the sin into the world entered, and through the sin the death; and thus to all men the death passed through, in which all sinned" (Diaglott).
Into the "world" of Adam came the entrance of the "sin" with the consequence of the "death". The effect of the "death" was that it "passed through" (spread) to "all men" (πάντας). This meant that "all" who were "in Adam" experienced the effect and consequences that pertained his transgression. It is also important to realize that what "passed through" was the death and not necessarily a 'sinful nature' (per Calvin, Augustine etc) have concluded. Those born into Adam were under a "ministration of the death" (II Cor. 3:7)--where once again the Greek text contains the definite article as it pertained to the Old Covenant.
In order to resolve the four constituent elements above, through the Cross, God introduced four elements that balanced what had occurred in the case of Adam:
From the time of the Cross to 70 CE, God was bringing about a wholesale change and defeat to those elements that had entered through Adam. "In order to change man, you must first change the world by which man is determined" (Max R. King).
During the "last days" (from the ministry of John the Baptizer through the "end of the age" in 70 CE), there was a progressive work of the Holy Spirit taking place to bring about a transformation of the "world" by which man (in Adam) had been determined.
The "age" speaks to the issue of time, whereas the "world" speaks to the issue of order within that time. There are three Greek words rendered variously as "world" (See my article, "What in the World is the World?" https://www.facebook.com/notes/larry-siegle/what-in-the-world-is-th...), each of which is carefully used by inspiration to describe certain aspects of God's unfolding purpose in redemption.
The "church" (the "called out" ones) were being delivered from the power and kingdom of darkness, and transferred (conveyed) into the kingdom of God's Son (Col. 1:13). This period of the "last days" was the "already" but "not yet" of Biblical fulfillment and was the progressive transformation of the community who were called out of the Old Covenant mode of existence and into the New Covenant mode of existence--becoming a "new creation" or "world" (II Cor. 5:17). Those believers who participated in the applied meaning of Christ's death, through "baptism into His death" (Rom. 6:3-7) entered into the process of transformation as individual members of the corporate "body of Christ". They were "being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord" (II Cor. 3:18). Notice the present tense verb that speaks to a process. The "from glory to glory" was from their Adamic and Old Covenant identity and "glory" and into a Christic identity and "glory" as determined by the New Covenant. Likewise with the passage that speaks to "being conformed into the image of His Son" (Rom. 8:29). Again, notice the present tense verb.
It was "the justification" (through the cross), and "the sanctification" (through the work of the Holy Spirit) that brought the "church" to "the glorification" (resurrection) at the "end of the age".
Thus, soteriology speaks to the entire process through which covenantal change took place during the "last days" and through which those who enter into the New Covenant today have 'accomplished salvation' meaning that the process has ended, but the results of that process remain for all who enter into benefits of what God accomplished.
I hope this helps to get the flow of our thinking moving forward. I am currently writing a book that will detail some of the points made here. It is called, The Redemptive Convergence: From the Cross to the Consummation and I hope to have it completed later this year.
I am confused by this discussion...
Not in the sense that I don't know what you are talking about, but in the mischaracterization of Reformed theology as being something whereby you can be comforted "in your sin"
If that were true, I would repudiate it too, but it isn't.
So, I suppose the problem with this discussion is that it is not accurately characterizing the position of the Reformed folks.
One cannot argue against something if it is not accurately reported.
While I do not adhere to Reformed theology anymore, nor do I think it's exegetically defensible to anyone outside of the "elect" of Israel; I also agree with you in that Paul was erecting a straw-man caricature in order to tear that down. He seems to have a strong hatred towards this "we" that is okay "in sin."
I was referring to Cory's post in which it was said:
"Because if you believe that sin is internally inherent within your very flesh and you are just told to keep repenting when you "mess up", then eventually you cease the struggle due to discouragement and you either fall away from God completely or find another church such as a Reformed church that "comforts" you IN your sin. "
I know of nothing in reformed theology that "comforts" you in sin. So I see that as a mischaracterization of the reformed view. And, how can I argue against a false statement? That's not productive and only leads down a rabbit hole.
I am sorry. I misread his post. I think I was confused because he was responding to you and I saw your name in his post and thought it was you.
Now I wonder what Paul would say to my charge?
No problem Doug.
I may be wrong here, but I understand reformed theology to say one is saved by election and it doesnt matter what you do or dont do, its all up to God and you cant change it, add to it or take away from it.
IF that is what Reformed theology teaches, then one could conclude that it doesnt matter how much I sin or dont sin, its by election and election alone, so no need to worry about my sinning (whether its a little or a lot). Given that conclusion, one may easily be comforted *in* their sin.