God Has Chosen you from the Beginning – Election Podcast

________________________

Hello and welcome to our podcast on the Election!

Week 3 of the Election Podcast (Chosen You!)

Today we are in week three of our special podcast on the decree of election and Calvinism.

The key takeaway of the reading today in John MacArthur’s “Biblical Doctrine” book is the reference to 2 Thess. 2:13:

But we should always give thanks to God for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God has chosen you from the beginning for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and faith in the truth. – 2 Thessalonians 2:13

An amazing statement that God has chosen us from the beginning. This sentiment was also discussed in last week’s Podcast.

The thought that God chose us for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit is both amazing and reassuring. We were chosen to be apart of God’s elect from the beginning of time. We have been saved by no working of our own. The saving grace that has saved us is solely from the work of God.

A Beautiful Bride to Christ

electionI also discuss today the importance of being a beautiful Bride of Christ. The Church today is the Bride. We need to strive to be a beautiful and Holy Bride to Christ as He has saved us.

We cannot simply begin to understand or grasp why Jesus Christ died for us and bore the wrath of God. Jesus Christ took the punishment. Jesus Christ has saved us through His love. Why would we not want to strive to be a great Bride of Christ?

We must diligently study and be stewards of the Holy Bible. The Holy Spirit flows through us and we must continue to study the Scriptures for God’s Will. I am not sure of the Will God intends to do through me, but I can take comfort in knowing that I am apart of His Elect!

God bless

 

Advertisements

Called According to His Purpose – Continued (Election Podcast #2)

Click here to listen to part 2 of our Election series!

Hello and welcome to the podcast!

Last Tuesday we started our new series based on the decree of the Election and Calvinism in general. Today we are taking a slight detour in our study by adding another piece of text to give us a deeper understanding of what we are studying.

The book that I am adding to our study is Biblical Doctrine by John MacArthur. This is a very deep book covering a vast amount of different Biblical topics, spanning almost 1000 pages. The section we will be using for this Tuesday podcast is titled, ‘The Decree of Election”.

This section of the book is going to give us a very deep understanding of where John MacArthur is coming from in his belief of the Election and Bible passages to back the belief up.

Today we research the passages Ephesians 1 :4-6 and Romans 8 :28-30.

…just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. Ephesians 1:4-6

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified. Romans 8:28-30

We go over the passages we did on last Tuesday’s podcast, but much more in depth. I also discuss my experience drinking straight cod liver fish oil and try to tie it in to salvation.

God bless!

 

Called According to His Purpose (Election Podcast Episode 1)

Click Here for Episode 1 of our Election Series!

Hello and welcome to the podcast!

Today we are starting our first podcast diving into the doctrine of Calvinism. This is the first episode of a lengthy series dedicated to teaching Calvinism through the scriptures and notes from our John MacArthur Study Bible.

Today we cover Romans 8: 28-30 and Eph 1: 4-11.

Romans 8: 28 – 30:

‘And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified. ‘

Ephesians 1: 4-11:

‘just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace which He lavished on us. In all wisdom and insight He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in Him with a view to an administration suitable to the fullness of the times, that is, the summing up of all things in Christ, things in the heavens and things on the earth. In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will, ‘

We are dedicated to honoring Jesus Christ through this podcast series and hope that you find great joy and peace knowing that we have been called for His Glory.

God Bless

The Importance of Cautious Interpretation

Next week we will begin changing our podcast series. On Tuesdays I will begin discussing the doctrine of election, or Calvinism. This is a very hot-button issue, so I plan on working through it very diligently and making sure I come across respectful and direct, so I do not confuse the listener or reader.

On Thursdays we will be continuing our study of 1 John and then later going in to a different study. We might start discussing the various arguments concerning the age of the Earth since that is also becoming a hot-button issue.

Throughout all of our studies and studies you might be doing on your own, it is extremely important that we study and pray over the text that we are interpreting and using in our everyday lives to guide us through the Holy Spirit.

There are far too many pastors out there trying to use “verse hopping” as their witnessing and evangelizing tool each Sunday for their sermons. Instead of expository, verse-by-verse teaching we have been given a watered down gospel that fits the narrative of the pastor. This has led to an entire generation (or two) learning the gospel based on the pastor’s worldview and not the truly inspired word of God.

The Doctrine of Election; Calvinism

black and white art GIF

This is probably the greatest debated theological position since the reformation with Luther and Calvin. For years both sides of the debate have been sure that their side is correct. In the age of social media this debate has only become more heated and concerning. As a Calvinist, I am fully aware of how some of the people on my side can come across. The worst argument I think on either side is the argument of how the other side views God and His power on this Earth. That argument is one that I will not use to argue for my viewpoint and I hope you can stay away from using it as well. I think it is an argument people online use to throw mud on their opponent from the beginning, which takes away from the reason for Christian arguments.

In a previous blog posting I discussed how my friend viewed pastors that have this viewpoint as false teachers. I kept my mouth shut not wanting to start a theological debate, but false teachers are very obvious and can come from both sides of this argument. Throwing the false teacher label on a teacher or pastor can be very damaging and might become watered down if we do not become more careful when using that label. The Christian that uses this argument during each debate has become the secular on Twitter calling someone a racist or bigot. Those words have become so overused that they have no meaning anymore.

Age of the Earth

project GIF

I fall into the camp of the young – Earth theory. I thought that this was a fairly common viewpoint until my grandfather told me that he is a Gap Theorist. The gap theory is the belief that Satan ruled between Gen 1:1 and 1:2 for millions and millions of years. I think you have to do some serious verse shopping to conclude this theory on the age of the Earth. As we go through this topic I want to take a very cautious approach, like I would be talking to my Grandpa in a friendly debate. I am a fairly strong follower of Ken Ham. If some of my arguments sound repetitive that might be where you are hearing them from.

The Importance of Biblical Debates

Notice I said BIBLICAL. These debates are very important among believers because we can use it to strengthen our Biblical worldview and it might change our own opinions. These debates can also strengthen relations among believers and bring a more togetherness and understanding that although we might disagree on some subjects, we can still see each other as brothers and sisters in Christ. Do not get me wrong, there are some Biblical viewpoints that are deeply heretical and blasphemous, but these two viewpoints I do not see as that whatsoever. Sure, there are some heretics that fall into both camps, but it is important to note that 90% of the people that fall into these camps are not heretics at all.

God bless and happy debating!

My Experiences Coming Out…

I remember hinting at my views and feelings to my loved ones for weeks and months on this topic… my new lifestyle. I had been feeling this way for quite some time, rather most of my life, but had never mustered up the courage to discuss it with any one. I was never educated enough on the subject to back up my beliefs and to counter the arguments that would inevitably come my way.

I would hint at it to my grandpa and his response was always silence. He wanted to debate with me but figured it was not a big enough deal to cause a fuss. I have been hinting at this view towards my wife for quite some time to soften the blow for when I finally come out and she is finally warming up to the idea. I remember telling my friend at work and her response was, “Zach, you need to stay away from false teachers”.

My subtle hints grew into more profound and boisterous statements. “Isn’t it crazy that God knew us before we were in our mother’s womb?” and “Only God knows what will come of our life” were easy statements to warm up my loved ones for the bomb I was about to drop.

I am coming out as a Calvinist.

shocked eyes GIF

My love for Billy Graham while I was falsely converted left me hungry and thirsty for more knowledge and depth in my sermons that I would listen to on podcasts or watch via YouTube. I started out with Wretched Radio, which opened my eyes to a whole slue of various Calvinist pastors. R.C. Sproul turned to John MacArthur, which turned to Paul Washer, which then turned to David Platt and Voddie Baucham. My eyes had been opened to all that I had grown up around. Calvinists were not scary as we hear from our pastors growing up or podcasts like Soteriology 101.

furtick

The sinner’s prayer has turned into my enemy and “Jesus sized hole in your heart” sermons have made my skin crawl. I can now back up my viewpoint as to the election and why that does not lead down to not having to evangelize. My pastor is very against Calvinism, but I think eventually I can hold my own in a discussion.

Coming out is not as difficult as I had once imagined. I think people are staying away form discussing it with me because they already assume I am ready for the arguments. It’s like arguing with a Mormon, they already know all of the questions you are going to ask, so what is the point.

south park mormons GIF by The Book of Mormon (Musical)

After the nightmare that ensued when my wife and I came out as anti-vaxxers and would not be vaccinating our child, I think I can handle anything.

If you are already inflamed, just add that I voted for Donald Trump to send you over the edge.

God bless