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Sunday, May 17, 2009

Dr. Lybrand, you ask,
"Mark,No disrespect felt...however, I don't see your exegesis yet. What exactly makes this 'salvation only'? Doesn't Christ save the whole person?"
I must admit that I do not understand your question. Yes He saves the whole person. I do not understand why you would ask me that. My understanding of Him saving the whole person is seen in a verse I've alluded to several times in this meta. It is seen in Acts 26:18-20. Romans 6 gives us a fuller view. The Christian goes from having been a slave to sin to being a slave to righteousness, a slave to God.
"Also, doesn't the 'soul' represent far more (exegetically) than just the spirit-into-heaven?"
Yes it does mean more than spirit into heaven. And I believe that even MacArthur would agree with that. Who do you know that wouldn't?
"I am not actually using a system, though I do confess to the importance of reasoning in interpretation.What in the context makes it a relief from an eternal burden?"
What is it that they are laboring over or are burdened about? Paul gives us a couple of glimpeses. One is his own experience in Romans 7. He was carnal and sold under sin in his days before Christ. His struggle was with his flesh, a struggle that would continue into his walk with Christ. See Gal. 5:17. His rest was found in Christ. Romans 7:25. The other glimpse was in Romans 10:1-13. The Jews mentioned there are going about to establish their own righteousness. Adain, Christ is the answer.
"Mark,On your other point:"The believer is now in Christ's kingdom, under His rule."Does this mean the believer must there room in you understanding for rebellion / mistakes / etc.?Thanks much,FRL"
There is plenty of room for rebellion; hence the chastening of the Father. The believer enters into the process of being conformed to the image of Christ. Jesus defined eternal life in John 17:3. Knowing God and being desirous to walk in His ways go hand in hand. See the life of King David. He longed after God but still got himself into situations wherein he had to be chastened. So it is with the NT believer.
May 17, 2009 2:52 PM

Saturday, January 17, 2009

My Statement of Faith

Having been enabled, through divine Grace to give up myself to the Lord, and likewise to others within my fellowship by the will of God, I account it as incumbent upon me, to make a declaration of my faith and practice, to the honor of Christ, and the glory of his Name; knowing, that with the heart man believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation, I do joyfully declare the following:

I. I believe, that the Scriptures of the old and new Testament, are the word of God, and the only rule of faith and practice.

II. I believe, that there is but one only living and true God; that there are three persons in the Godhead, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, who are equal in nature, power, and glory; and that the Son and the Holy Ghost are as truly and properly God as the Father. These three distinct divine persons, I profess to reverence, serve and worship as the one true God.

III. I believe, that before the world began, God did elect a number which no man can number of persons unto everlasting salvation; whom, of His own free grace, and according to the good pleasure of His will, He did predestinate to be His adopted children by Jesus Christ; and that in pursuance of this gracious design, He did, by means of a Covenant of grace and peace with his Son Jesus Christ, on behalf of those persons, appoint Him as Savior. Through Christ all spiritual blessings are provided for them. In addition, their persons, with all their grace and glory, were put into the hands of Christ, and made his care and charge.

IV. I believe, that God created the first man Adam, after his image, and in his likeness, an upright, holy, and innocent creature, capable of serving and glorifying him, but he sinned and all his posterity sinned in him, and came short of the glory of God. As a result, a corrupt nature is derived by all his offspring both by ordinary and natural generation, so that they are by their first birth carnal and unclean, averse to all that is spiritually good, and prone to sin. As such they are also by nature children of wrath and under a sentence of condemnation, subject not only to corporal death, i.e., the death of the body, but also to an eternal death, all from which there is no deliverance, but by Christ the last Adam.

V. I believe, that the Lord Jesus Christ, being set up from everlasting as the mediator of the everlasting Covenant and the surety of his people, did in the fullness of time assume human nature, in which nature he suffered and died as the substitute of his people, in their room and stead. As the Substitute of His people He made all that satisfaction for their sins which the law and justice of God could require, as well as purchase all those blessings which are needful for them both for time and eternity.

VI. I believe, that the eternal Redemption which Christ has obtained by the shedding of his blood was intentionally designed for the people of God, called also the Elect and the Sheep of Christ, and that they by faith shall share the special and peculiar blessings of it.

VII. I believe, that the Justification of God's people is only by the righteousness of Christ imputed to them, that is to say, charged to their account, without the consideration of any works of righteousness done by them; and that the full and free pardon of all their sins and transgressions, past, present and to come, is only through the blood of Christ according to the riches of his grace.

VIII. I believe, that the Gospel ought to be preached to every creature, and that it is the means by which God the Holy Spirit convicts, calls and regenerates. As the Scripture says, "But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name (John 1:12)." Therefore, the work of regeneration, conversion, sanctification and faith is not an act of man's will and power, but of the mighty, efficacious grace of God; as again the Scripture says, "Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God (John 1:13)."

IX. I believe, that all who are truly saved shall certainly and finally persevere, so that not one of them shall ever perish, because they have everlasting life.

X. I believe, that there shall be a Resurrection of the dead, both of the just and the unjust; and that Christ will come a second time to judge both quick and dead; when he will take vengeance on the wicked, and introduce his own people into his kingdom and glory, where they shall be for ever with him. (It is not necessary that one subscribe to a specific school of eschatology, i.e., doctrine of last things, or prophecy, for me to consider them a brother or sister in Christ.)

XI. I believe, that Baptism and the Lord's Supper are ordinances of Christ, to be continued until his second coming: that those only are to be admitted into the church, and to participate of all ordinances in it, who upon profession of their faith, have been baptized by immersion, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.

The above is an adaptation taken from