Disturbing Trends, Doctrine as Idol, J.D. Hall

Indoctrinating Your Children with Doctrine

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Someone sent me a link to this book for children.  The book was just recently published – just over a month ago – April 2013.


Here is the book description from Amazon:

Come along on a journey with Mitchell, as he recalls his nightmare for his mother. Mitchell was in a land of darkness and gloom, when due to no cooperation of his own, a Knight in shining armor saved him and all the other captives He intended to save. “Help! Arminians are Giving Me Nightmares Again!” is a children’s allegory designed to teach your kids the Doctrines of Grace through the use of creative story-telling.

So check this out.  Here’s this book for children advertised on Amazon, right?  A book written specifically for children, mind you.   Go read the one negative review and all of the comments following.  We’ve got a doctrinal war going on, people.  A doctrinal war going on in the review section of a children’s storybook.

Here is that one negative review (as of June 1, 2013 – because you can be sure more will be coming):

I apologize. The decription is enough to give me the heebee-jeebees. Didn’t buy or read the book; don’t intend to. Since only a very few are chosen for salvation and many, many will go to eternal damnation (along with all and every infant), the chances of my grandchildren being those for whom God intended to save is awfully slim. Don’t want to give them Calvinistic nightmares. (Source)

As of right now, there are three pages of bantering back and forth Calvinism vs Arminianism.  Here are a couple of more comments following the negative review (man, see what happens when you leave a negative review somewhere – I sure hope this guy doesn’t get sued).

Actually, the fear that God won’t choose someone because they are too bad dovetails with the classic Arminian doctrine of conditional election, whereas unconditional election isn’t based on how good or bad the sinner is. So thanks for shooting yourself in the foot. Conditional election would give a kid nightmares. (Source)

And here’s a response to the above comment:

Keystone, your comment shows that you do not know Arminian doctrine rightly.

That’s the point of “unconditional election”. It has nothing to do with merit or demerit. Calvinism teaches man is not worthy of salvation, and that is right. However, it also essentially teaches that others are damned without any reference too their deserving it (although, that is denied; nevertheless, it is the logical conclusion).

Conditonal election would not give nightmares for the Arminian can truthfully tell the child God loves him and will save him; all he need do is trust Christ.

If the Calvinist were honest, he would need to tell the child that he might be of the elect or you might be damned to hell forever and there is nothing you can do about it. While the child cries that God can’t be like that, in good Calvinist fashion, you can tell him, “Who are you, child, to answer back to God.”

If I were 7 years old and heard Calvinistic doctrine, I’d have stinking nightmares…along with wetting my pj’s! (Source)

You all have got the picture that these are review comments on a CHILDREN’S BOOK, right? Let me rephrase it, these are reviews for a book that was written for us to read to our cute little munchkins/offspring/heritage/blessings/arrows/passel/whatever-you-want-to-call-your-kids.

We all know that Christianity has basic tenets:  Christ’s death and resurrection, virgin birth, Christ is Son of God, saved by grace through faith, etc.  Silly me – I thought I just needed to know those kinds of basics to be a Christian.  It wasn’t until a few years ago that I had even heard of the names “Calvinism” and “Arminism.”  It confused me.  It still confuses me.

We’ve talked about the idolatry of doctrine before.  I believe the idolatry of doctrine can create an environment in which abuse is allowed to continue in churches.  The obsessive focus on doctrine can become a distraction to the message of Christ and what it really means to live out the life Christ intended:  loving God and loving others.

I have a problem with training children this stuff at such a young age.  What is the purpose? To raise up little like-minded warriors to defend your brand of Christianity?  Yea, I know, train up a child in the way he should go passage in Deuteronomy – – and that’s based on your interpretation of scripture because we all know your interpretation is the right interpretation and it doesn’t matter whether this stuff has been argued and debated for centuries, you’ve got it all figured out.  Uh-huh, I’m tracking with you.  I bought into this stuff in the Homeschool Movement when we were told to produce as many babies as possible so our little children could become spiritual warriors on the battlefield.

If the Bible has everything we need for life and godliness, why do my children need to learn Calvin’s stuff or the Arminian stuff?  Why can’t it just be solely from the Bible?   LDS carry their Bibles, too, along with the Book of Mormon when they go to their wards to worship.  I have seen some combo versions that include the Pearl of Great Price and The Doctrines and Covenants.   These are all part and parcel of LDS.

The way I’m seeing it, there are some Christians who behave the same way as Mormons. They have their Bible along with the Institutes of Calvin.  I wonder if there is a combo Calvin Institutes/Bible in publication yet?  By the way, I’m picking on the staunch Calvinists because that is my frame of reference.  Do Arminians have a “bible” like Calvin’s Institutes?  If they do, then add them to this paragraph.  I’m picking on anyone who adds another book to their Bible and elevates it to the level of Bible.  Ask a Mormon which book is more important to them.  They have a hard time saying that the Bible is #1.  When I talk to some people, I get the feeling they read more about their brand of doctrine than they read from their own Bibles.

I have a problem with people elevating men’s ideas as gospel above the Bible and especially when those men’s ideas become so divisive that somehow Christ and the true meaning of Christianity somehow gets lost.

Yea, I think I’ll stick with just the Bible for my kids.  Men and their ideas complicate Christianity for me.  For realz.

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608 thoughts on “Indoctrinating Your Children with Doctrine”

  1. An Attorney,
    I agree…somewhat. If you are a prosecuting attorney, I am the defense attorney (hypothetically, that is).

    Romans 6:1-2 is a great example in that Paul asks a rhetorical question:

    Shall we continue in sin that grace might abound? God forbid

    But, most will leave out the remaining part of verse 2

    How shall we that are dead to sin live any longer therein.

    He asks a rhetorical question, but also answers his own question. The legalists (Prosecuting Lawyers) would probably stop midway into verse 2, making it say “DON’T SIN”, instead of completing the verse which shows that we CANNOT SIN.

    1 John 3:9
    “Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.”



  2. I tweeted this morning and check out the response from the author of the children’s book. Oh, did I mention that he is also a pastor? Folks, he seems to be putting you all down.

    JD Hall


  3. Born4Battle,
    I disagree. I focus on Abraham who didn’t have the law of Moses. He is the father of the faith. We are sons of Abraham, the promise given to him. Law vs. No Law.

    Calvinists are about rules and regs. Abraham didn’t have rules and regs.

    By the way, I am the same way with 7th Day Adventists, and the Herbert W Armstrong clan, and a whole slew of others, so it isn’t just Calvinism that I am in battle against.



  4. Julie Anne,
    2 days ago you posted this comment:

    Julie Anne – June 2, 2013 @ 1:06 PM – “I bet you all my chicken-fried bacon that the Calvinism/Arminianism debate won’t get resolved on my blog :)”

    You are not a “prophetess”, but you were right. This debate never gets resolved.

    Your statement in the original post is so true: “The obsessive focus on doctrine can become a distraction to the message of Christ and what it really means to live out the life Christ intended: loving God and loving others.” ~ Julie Anne Smith

    In Matthew 22:35-41 Jesus said loving God and loving others was the greatest commandment. How quickly that is forgotten when the doctrinal debates start !

    BTW, LOL at your comment on 5 pts pf “beardinism” June 3, 2013 @ 10:35 PM ! 😀
    All the pictures I’ve seen of Calvin, he had a beard. Jacob Arminus, according to a painting on Wikipedia, also had a beard. (ATIA didn’t allow beards – their rule was clean-shaven. No Bible verse cited – Bill Gothard got that from IBM dress code. But I think I saw one of the Duggars with a beard, so maybe that “rule” has changed.)


  5. Ed Chapman

    Appreciated your thoughts about “The Trinity.” @ JUNE 4, 2013 @ 1:11 AM

    I began to check out these “Traditions” “Terms” NOT in the Bible.
    Seems – In order to explain “the Trinity” that’s NOT in the Bible…
    These guys have to use all kinds of other terms, words, NOT in the Bible.

    I’m thinking – words, terms, NOT in the Bible are likely to be traditions of men…
    that make void the word of God… Mark 7:13

    Calvinism, Arminonism, Compli… eagal… Oh you spell it… AARRRGGHH!!! 😉
    They all become a distraction

    I also noticed that, in the Bible, When they Baptised –
    They did it in the name of Jesus…
    NOT in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost.

    Now are these folks NOT really baptized cause some pastor did it wrong? 😉 😉

    Is their salvation at stake?

    Do they need to be re-baptised in the name of Jesus – to make it real? 😉

    And when re-baptized – they are now, automatically become – Ana-Baptists?


  6. Jeff Brown,
    You stated:
    “Even though sin is not counted where there is no law – apparently not counted as an infraction of the law – death reigned before the law. Therefore, all people (Jews and Gentiles) sinned before the law, and death was the result. ”

    What this means, and I have spoken to Jews about this, that no one can enter heaven when they die because of sin. That is the death being discussed…spiritually known as “separation from God”. According to the Jews, when one dies, they go to sheol (in the English “Hell”) but to the Jew, that place is not the burning hell, but Abraham’s Bosom. They believe that no one goes to heaven until the redeemer comes. I got that from Jews. Well, that is exactly what I believe, but I also believe that Jesus already came and went, and that the captives were set free from that place. Hell is KNOWN AS death…separation from God.

    That is how I put Romans 5:14 into context. Under Christ, death does NOT reign. He conquered death, and we are IN Christ (Christian).



  7. Julie Anne

    Did you get my email? About needing more info?

    If today is NOT good for you let me know – Thanks


  8. Yikes, that was harsh on JD’s part. I would say ditch the labels if it were an easy thing to do. Humans by nature will group themselves. When grouping toegether with similarly minded people, it is common practice to have some way to identify that group, thus giving them a label. We learn not only on our own, but also from others who have learned before us. We can study the Bible and draw our own conclusions, and we should, but we still can and should learn from those that go before us. Some have learned from Calvin, others Wesley, some Luther, and on and on and on. These people in turn learned at least in part from those who came before them. When they are the ones who have put together an organized thought on a matter than many others learn from and agree with, it is natural to identify those people as a group, labeling them Calvinists, Methodists, Lutherans, etc, etc.

    The big difficulties I see with labels though are that not everyone fits the mold perfectly. Even within the group are differences and disagreements on various things. The label is still a fairly easy identifier though when trying to categorize one’s general beliefs and thoughts. The problem comes when others associate identical beliefs with all members of that group, and then when they have a disagreement with the ideas of the group, they have knee-jerk reactions to those in the group, even if their beliefs are not exactly what one may think. They become anti-Calvinist or anti-Arminian, or anti-whatever, not allowing for even the possibility of disagreement or being wrong. Thus, these labels can become divisive, though they shouldn’t have to be. We can chalk that up I think to the stubborn nature of people that we have to be right.


  9. Ed,

    Sovereign grace doctrine (Romans 8:30) allows for Abram’ faith being just as much a gift as that of any NT believer. the language of Eph 2:8-9 is clear.That was for me a hard pill to swallow back in my own Calvin hating days.‘ The difference between Abraham and NT believers is that Abraham’s faith was in the promise, and NT faith is in the person and work of Jesus Christ.

    I quit fighting ‘isms’ a long time ago. I prefer to go straight to the doctrines being taught in scripture. If the scripture is clear on something I just need to believe it. My studies of sovereign grace doctrine have been quite extensive. that is not to boast, but only to say that I clung fiercely to the notion that free choice means free ‘will’. Finding out everything I could about the nature of fallen man in the Bible was a huge wake-up call. That I now agree with Calvin on a lotof things, is a coincidental.


  10. Born4Battle,
    Abraham’s faith was his own, not a gift. Now, you want to talk about predestination. Even that has a context.

    Romans 8:30 has to be seen in light of verse 29, in that he predestinated “Christians as a whole” TO BE (Key word here is TO BE) conformed to the image of his son, not the unsaved to be saved.

    Conforming the SAVED to the image of his son is what was predestinated.

    In my humble opinion, verse 30 is discussing the ALREADY SAVED, not the unsaved predestined to be saved.

    The saved are called to do something. The saved are chosen to do something.

    To me, it has absolutely nothing to do with predestinating the unsaved to be saved.



  11. Ed Chapman

    When I do my own research on this doctrine called “the Trinity”
    And God forbid my research could be wrong

    I find there are different types of “The Trinity”
    Yup – NOT ALL who use “The Trinity”” agree What it really means…

    Very similar to Calvinism, Arminianism, Complen…. Egalaaaa… AAARRRGGHH!!!
    NO one knows what these terms – NOT in the Bible – really mean. 😉

    WOW – Different – Trinitarians – Believing – different things – about “The Trinity.” 🙂

    Now when some one says – “I believe in “The Trinity” – I ask – “Which One?”

    Often I get a quizzical look – Most believe their “Trinity” – That they learned about in their “Denomination” is the correct one. I ask – “If you do NOT know there is more then ONE explanation for “Trinity?” Given by different “Edjumacated Cemetarians Theologins?” – Dead and alive – How do you know your “Trinity” is the correct one?

    1 – I’ve noticed – “Some Trinitarians” – Believe there is a “Hierarchy” in the God Head. Number one is #1 – The Father – #2 – Is the Son. #3 – Is the Holy Spirit. “Some Trinitarians”- NOT ALL – Call it ESS, Eternal Subordination of the Son. Seems lots of these guys say, “See – Hierarcy in the God head. Hierarchy in the 501 (3), Religious Corporations, the IRS calls church. heroarchy in the Home – And the Man is the BOSS… Everyone has to obey me…:-(

    1 – “Some Trinitarians” – Believe there is “NO heroarchy” in the God Head.
    These “Edjumacated Cemetarians Theologins” say, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are “Equal” and use another whole bunch of “terms in our Christian Lexicon” – But – NOT found in the Bible. – Omniscience – Omnipresent – Omnipotent – To describe God. To other “Edjumacated Cemetarians Theologins.” But – Because “US” common folks do NOT understand these big words – We just go along with these guys with the Big words. 😉

    2 – I’ve noticed – “Some Trinitarians” Believe – With out a Bible verse to back it up…
    The Father is NOT the Son.

    2 – I’ve also noticed – “Some Trinitarians” – Believe – Isa. 9:6, Where it says…
    Unto us a Son is Given – Is refering to Jesus. And this son is called…
    “The mighty God – “The Everlasting Father” – The Prince of Peace.
    And Jesus did say – I and the Father are “ONE.” – You see Me you see the Father.

    So, now we have more division in the Body of Christ over a word – Trinity –
    A “term in our Christian Lexicon” – But – NOT found in the Bible.

    And there are more differences about “the Trinity” – But you get the Drift.
    Now when some one says – “I believe in “The Trinity” – I ask – “Which One?”

    The Trinity with “Heirarchy?” – Or The Trinity with “NO Heirarchy?”
    The Trinity with “The Father is NOT the Son?”- Or, The Son is The Everlasting Father?
    The Trinity with 3 distinct persons – Or, The Father, The Word, The Holy Spirit – ONE.

    Yeah – Where is 3 distinct persons in the Bible?

    3 Persons – makes God sound so…. errr.. shall we say… So Human…. 🙂

    NO – God is NOT a person… NOT a man that He should lie…

    God is Love – God is Spirit – God is Light…
    Without beginning… Without end… But 3 persons… AARRRGGGHHH!!!


  12. Ed,

    I think your interpretation messes with the text, no offense intended. It just does.

    The entire train of thought is in the ‘past’ tense, referring to ‘whom’, which refers to specific persons, not a ‘thing’ they are called to do – every single one of them.

    We also have clear statements that some were ‘appointed to eternal life’ (Acts 13:48) and some were ‘chosen for salvation from the beginning (Thess 2:13).

    I couldn’t explain it away.

    Couple that with Eph 2 (chosen before the foundation of the world), and we have the doctrine of sovereign grace and all the pieces fit.

    God determined before our time began to save out of fallen mankind, a people unto himself, for his honor and glory.

    Since no man seeks God and we have ‘natural minds’ set against God, it is God and God alone who must save. We do choose Christ, but only because he chose us first.

    On a personal level, the ‘lest any man should boast’ puts the nail in the coffin. If I contribute anything, even 1 percent ove against God’s 99 percent, I have ‘reason for boasting’, whether I do or not. There has to be some difference why in a group of people, all of whom are presented the message of the gospel, that some are saved and some are not. The reason some are saved and some are not, is because of men, or God. There are no other options. If the difference is in men, men have a reason to boast in their salvation. I can’t fight the logic, not to mention the plain text of scripture.

    Anyway, thanks for hanging around this crusty old dude.


  13. .

    Ed – thought you might enjoy this…

    St. Patrick’s Bad Analogies of “The Trinity’ in 4 minutes…


  14. Hey HUG

    Yes – the guys with the power – get to determine what is “Sound Doctrine.”

    At least “Sound Doctrine” for those who wish to sit at their feet…
    And follow a “Mere Fallible Human.”


  15. Born4Battle,
    2 Thes 2:13
    But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:

    To me, that is not saying that anyone is specifically chosen for salvation.

    The object of the discussion here is sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth. That is what salvation is thru.

    What was chosen was sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth, not the person to be chosen for salvation.



  16. Born4Battle,

    To further clarify my last,
    “IF you want to be saved, then you are saved thru sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth. That is the way that you are saved. That is the PROCEDURE that God chose to save you by.”

    The key word is “THROUGH”. You are saved THROUGH sanctification of the spirit and belief of the truth.

    Again, it has nothing to do with an individual being chosen, but the method of how one is saved.



  17. It has to also have a past tense meaning, the text of the passage itself indicatesthat God did things ‘already’ on behalf of ‘those/them’, individuals, not a group. Your ‘past tense’ meaning of those ‘already saved’ does not fit eother the text or the context.


  18. I just love reading people arguing over the meaning of the very poor translation known as the King James Version, which was a theologically and divine right of kings, hierarchically driven translation which did not source the available Greek and Hebrew/Aramaic manuscripts! And we wonder why a lot of educated people think we are nuts to believe, when we argue over the English tense of verbs and their application, using 16th century language!


  19. Born4Battle,
    You said that God did things already on behalf of those/them, individuals, not a group.

    I disagree. God provided the path to salvation, not the individual for salvation. And, as I said before, verse 29 of Romans 8 shows that it is the already saved that are “TO BE” conformed to the image of his son, not the unsaved, and so therefore, the past tense of saved does indeed fit perfectly well.



  20. A Amos Love,

    I absolutely loved your trinity video. I have one as well:

    I don’t know how to embed it, but we will see if it gets embedded when I post the link:



  21. Yep, you sound like a prosecuting attorney. I defend the use of the KJV. Nice to see those who condemn it. Would you rather have the Hip Hop version?



  22. NO. But I do prefer one based on the best Greek and Hebrew manuscripts, and where they explain their choices and why they made them. Many just say when they could not choose on any other basis, they went with the translation nearest in meaning to the KJV. It was a translation by a bunch of priests who had little education in anything but Latin and who were working at the king’s bidding, where if they did not satisfy him, there could easily be a separation of head from body!


  23. Born4Battle,
    Ephesians 1:4 (You said Ephesians 2, so I did not previously respond to it)
    According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

    Key words are “THAT WE”.

    We as a group. US as a group.

    The object of the conversation is THAT THE SAVED be holy and without blame before him in love.

    Not that anyone was specifically chosen.



  24. An Attorney,
    So which version do you use? I would rather go by the KJV because the English of those days were more pure, and I have a Strong’s Concordance. I believe that it is important to learn how the English people spoke in them days. The concordance defines the original Greek and or Hebrew and or Aramaic. I am sorry that you have a problem with it. I am not a Greek Scholar, I am not a Hebrew Scholar, and I don’t care to be. I rely on those who translated it from the so-called original texts to my native tongue.

    In my research in the matter, as a pseudo attorney, the KJV is best translated and it does NOT deviate from all of the rest of the languages in the whole wide world in their translations. Our problem is our English language, that is so corrupt in the 21st century, not the English language on the 16th. Furthermore, we have way too many different English translations…way too many.



  25. Gary, and An Attorney,
    I don’t mind the NIV or the NASB, but if you use the KJV you will see that words and phrases match words and phrases. You generally won’t find that in the NIV or the NASB. When one does word studies, the KJV is the finest on the market. My opinion.



  26. This is a little late, but in regards to the tweet about “elementary, naive Christianity,” I call B.S. Even though there are several commenters that I have disagreements with theologically, they still think through their faith to a degree that not many other Christians do. Many commenters here do in addition to the blog posts that spur on the conversations. These blog posts and further discussion are FAR from elementary. There is a lot of critical thinking going on. Keep up the good work JA!

    Oh, and as far as what version of the Bible is best, remember that they are ALL translations, including the KJV. They ALL have their flaws, they ALL have their strengths. The KJV is not inherrently better than any other translation, and it does indeed still have good uses.


  27. Ed, I do not participate in the criminal injustice system. General civil practice, usually representing poor people, especially family law where children are either abused or at risk of being abused. Actually make some money doing taxes, wills, estate and real estate stuff. Work out of my home to keep costs down, live in a poor part of town, what was the high crime district when we moved here, but is not any longer. Rehabbing a 19teens house. Do 30-40 percent pro bono. Get almost as much in Social Security as I net practicing law full time. Have a 500+ volume library of books on the Bible, translations, commentaries, inter-linears, etc. Read widely. I am a Red-Letter Christian — everything else in the Bible must be interpreted in light of the teachings of Jesus, who is the ultimate fulfillment of the entire Bible. Have sat under teaching by some top theologians in small classes. General Baptist in leaning (as opposed to Particular Baptist which is akin to Calvinism). Firmly a believer in the priesthood of each and every believer and thus in democratic church governance by the body as a whole. Generally egalitarian, but recognize that people are all different and have different skills and capabilities, some of which MAY be related to their gender, and the body needs all of those skills and capabilities utilized in their fullest for the furtherance of the gospel. Generally open minded, tolerant of dissent, open to finding common ground. Long-time mediator and negotiator, became an attorney relatively late in life. Background in both natural sciences and social sciences, with an emphasis on epistemology and how humans think about and understand risk and related concepts.


  28. chapmaned24

    “Sheol” and “Hades” are two words for the same place, but it had two compartments: 1) Abraham’s Bosom; 2) Hell, aka Abaddon or the pit. It’s true that, until Jesus’s ascension, all people, righteous and unrighteous, went to Sheol (Hades); the righteous to AB, the unrighteous to Hell (Abaddon, the pit).

    Yes, Jesus took all those in AB to Heaven, where all believers go now when they die. Non-believers will go to Gehenna, or the Lake of Fire, which is eternal.

    Not sure what this has to do physical death as ultimately the result of sin. Righteous people sinned before Jesus, and believers sin now, and all (with a couple of exceptions) physically died. They didn’t die spiritually.

    Oh, I just saw your earlier comment.

    We start out innocent? “Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me”? We “were by nature children of wrath”?

    Innocent doesn’t necessarily mean being without a sin nature. It can mean innocent as to certain forms of sin. I am in NO way saying that, because children are born with a sin nature, they in any way deserve to be abused. That is a monstrous belief.

    Deut 1:39 – First of all, Canaan may be a type of heaven, but it is not heaven. And the specific sin of unbelief that resulted in adults not entering the land was not committed by young children. Though I don’t see, in Scripture, a blanket (no pun intended) exception for children, I hope I am wrong.

    The next 6 verses you refer to, I’ve already dealt with directly or indirectly.

    “Romans 6:2 We are dead to sin. That means that sin does not exist.” What? In what way can this be true? For one thing, being dead to sin does not mean that sin (i.e. the flesh) is dead to us.

    Romans 7:4
    Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law

    That means that the law does not exist.

    Galatians 2:19
    For I through the law am dead to the law

    That means that the law does not exist.”

    Even if you mean only that the law does not exist for believers, that is also untrue. What is true is that we are no longer UNDER the law. We can’t be judged by it.

    “Bottom line, Law (not of faith) vs. No Law (faith)

    Did Abraham have law or no law?”

    Well, the law of circumcision came into effect after he was saved. But even if it had been before, it would have had nothing to do with his being declared righteous by God. That was as a result of him believing God.

    So are you saying that merely being aware of the law keeps one from being saved? Isn’t one of the main (maybe THE main) functions of the Mosaic Law to cause us to despair of ever achieving our own righteousness, and therefore driving us to the Messiah?


  29. King James gave the translators instructions intended to guarantee that the new version would conform to the ecclesiology and reflect the episcopal structure of the Church of England and its belief in an ordained clergy. The translation was done by 47 scholars, all of whom were members of the Church of England. -or-
    The man who edited the text was a Roman Catholic priest and humanist named Erasmus.


  30. I use several translations, regularly including the NIV and KJV, but others as well, particularly when looking at hard to translate passages. And the advantage of an interlinear is that the Greek or Hebrew or Aramaic word, in familiar roman type, can be looked up to see all the ways it has been translated in different contexts, which can help avoid taking a rare translation as the likely meaning of a word to the exclusion of other, more common translations of it.


  31. Jeff Brown:
    You had said:
    “Not sure what this has to do physical death as ultimately the result of sin.”

    You are correct. It doesn’t have anything to do with physical death at all. The death that is spoken in Genesis is not physical death, but spiritual death.

    I don’t know where people get the idea that physical death was the punishment passed down from Adam.

    Adam was going to die a physical death anyway.

    1 Cor 15:36-50

    Now, I know that the first thing that most will say is that 1 Cor 15 is discussing the resurrection. No kidding? Really? As if I didn’t already know that. But it discusses the body, the one before the resurrection, and the one after the resurrection. One is a natural body, and the other is a spiritual body.

    Adam never had a spiritual body. If it’s made of dirt, it dies.

    There was another tree in the Garden called the Tree of Life. In order for Adam to have received eternal life, he would have had to have eaten of that tree, which is ALSO why God had to put an angel in front of that tree, so that they would not eat of that tree in a fallen state.

    So, the death of the body has nothing to do with the result of sin. The death of the body was gonna happen anyway.



  32. Jeff,
    You had stated:
    “We start out innocent? “Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me”? We “were by nature children of wrath”?”

    My response:
    Your reference of Psalms is not stating that David had sin, but that his mother conceived him in sin.

    We are born “IN” sin, NOT WITH SIN. Huge difference. Huge.

    Again, I point to Deuteronomy 1:39. Who gets to go to the promised land?



  33. Jeff,
    You had said:
    ““Romans 6:2 We are dead to sin. That means that sin does not exist.” What? In what way can this be true? For one thing, being dead to sin does not mean that sin (i.e. the flesh) is dead to us. ”

    My response:
    Sin is not imputed where there is no law, therefore sin does not exist to a dead person. We are dead. You cannot sin if you are dead. Dead in sin is different from dead to sin.

    See 1 John 3:4, does it say “should not” or “cannot”?

    Dead people cannot sin, period:

    Romans 7:7
    For he that is dead is freed from sin.

    Verse 11:
    Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.

    Being dead to the law means that you are dead to sin. The law does not pertain to dead people, and therefore, sin is no more. The strength of sin is the law.

    1 Cor 15:56



  34. An Attorney,
    Oh, I know you are a fine attorney. I’ve seen your posts from long ago here. I am just putting on my religious debate hat on here. I love that hat. For what you do, I have a high respect for.

    In regards to the KJV, to be honest, I really don’t care who translated it. Whoever translated it did one sheol of a fine job. I don’t knock the translation, I learn from it.



  35. Jeff,
    You had said:
    “Deut 1:39 – First of all, Canaan may be a type of heaven, but it is not heaven. And the specific sin of unbelief that resulted in adults not entering the land was not committed by young children. Though I don’t see, in Scripture, a blanket (no pun intended) exception for children, I hope I am wrong.”

    Please put on your spiritual hat. The PROMISED LAND (Canaan, Israel, Palestine, whatever you want to call it) is spiritually heaven, and we must read the Bible in the spiritual hat, and not the carnal hat.

    Who gets to go there?
    1. Those who have faith (Caleb and Joshua), and
    2. Those who have no knowledge of good and evil

    That is spiritual interpretation. We need to put on the spiritual lenses and remove the carnal lenses.



  36. Dear Attorney,
    You said, “…everything else in the Bible must be interpreted in light of the teachings of Jesus, who is the ultimate fulfillment of the entire Bible.”

    I wish we all interpreted Scripture this way. It makes life so simple: just do and say what Jesus did and said. I’m a conservative Christian and a rhetoric teacher helped me see that many of my Christian positions/arguments were in direct opposition to the teachings of the Person I claimed to follow.


  37. Anonymous,
    Last I recall, all scripture is God breathed, it’s his word from beginning to end. Jesus from the beginning to the end. The words of Jesus (The Word of God) thru and thru. Jesus did say that he has much more to teach, which means that there are things that Jesus did not say which would “illuminate” the Hebrew scriptures about him to us. So, there is much more than just the red letters that need to be learned. The Black letters also need to be learned, that he did not teach in the gospels, that he said that the Holy Spirit would teach.

    I do love rhetorical questions presented, because even tho the person asking the rhetorical question isn’t looking for an answer, I do look for the answer. I find the hidden treasures that he intended for us to find that way.



  38. JoeJoe,
    You had said:
    “I am complementarian”.

    I am an American. What continent are you from? Just kidding. I personally find all these strange words just that…strange. Can’t we just be humans that are Christians without the strange wording of labels? Treat your wife as you would want to be treated. The two are one flesh, not separate fleshes. You are of the same body, and you take care of your body.

    I give a compliment to the waitress when she pours me a cup of coffee, or to the waiter that brings me my food. I sometimes will get a free complimentary breakfast when I stay in certain hotels.

    I find these labels very strange, when we should just do things that come natural

    Romans 2:14-15 (DO BY NATURE, based on conscience)
    14 For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:

    15 Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)



  39. Hey Ed: Note the spelling difference:

    Compliment and complEment.

    I agree with you. Quit with the made-up words and do what Gid says. It’s simple.


  40. Julie Anne,

    Yes, I remember the different spelling long ago when you did a piece on this topic, however they both sound the same, and so my point was about the made up words, and making it sound like a long lost country on an uncharted Island, such as the citizens of Gilligan’s Island being called Gilliganist’s, and the people from ComplEmentary are called Complementarianists. I live in Christ, so I am a Christian.

    The waitress/waiter/breakfast was just in my attempt at “dry humor”…lol



  41. Julie Anne,

    In re: Tween on Complemtarianism

    OMG…lol…there’s that thing again about God’s good will and pleasure thing again, repackaged as a JOY for us, which gives God the glory. Slavery is slavery is slavery, and it isn’t a joy. It isn’t God’s will, either. God’s will is to SET US FREE. Slavery does not give God glory.



  42. The latest incarnation is “Help Mom! This blog won’t let me sleep!” Photo credits go to the film Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Words?


  43. I have only partly followed this debate over the doctrine of sin, but these folks have put forth some scriptures I intend to look at. One important thing about doctrine is that it helps formulate our answer from “because the Bible says so” or “I just believe God wouldn’t do that” or “just have faith” to a reasonable explanation of why you believe or have the hope you have. What got me interested in this particular exchange is I believe it started over do babies go to heaven or hell? (I may be wrong, but it was my impression anyway) We lost our first grand baby at 33 weeks in the womb last October. The best I could say then to my daughter was we know he is in heaven. And if asked why do I believe that I would have said, cause I am sure we have a good God who would not send a child who has not had a chance to understand the Gospel and accept or reject Christ to hell. Y’all threw out some verses that give me a starting points of reference. I am just now getting to where I can explore this topic more.


  44. And while all these Defenders of the Faith are arguing Theology, pastors’ widows are still eating out of dumpsters.


  45. Darrell – – – Wow – now we’re talking nuts and bolts of doctrine. Am I understanding Calvinist doctrine correctly by saying that we don’t now if all babies who die will go to heaven, that only the elect will be there, right? That would be a tough pill to swallow for anyone to take – especially under tragic circumstances as the loss of a 33-wk baby. My heart goes out to you, Darrell. How is your daughter?

    I’ve had a few miscarriages – none of those pregnancies had I heard the heartbeat. 33 wks is a time in which babies born can be viable, baby is squirming and kicking in the womb. That would be such a difficult loss. I can’t imagine. 😦

    I hope to read some responses to your comment.


  46. Hi Darrell,

    I am not a Calvinist, so I do not believe that any babies go to hell at all.

    I am going to throw the first pitch with Deuteronomy 1:39.

    The context of the story is:

    Who gets to go to the Promised Land (Heaven).
    When you read the story of the men that Moses sent out into Canaan, only two came back and said, “We can kick their butts”. the rest were afraid. So, the generation that had doubt did not get to go to the promised land…except for those who had faith. Now, Deuteronomy 1:39 indicates that others get to go to the promised land as well. Who are they? Those who have no knowledge of good and evil.

    To sum up, Who Gets to go to the Promised Land?
    1. Those who have faith, and
    2. Those who have no KNOWLEDGE of good and evil (WHAT WAS THE NAME OF THAT TREE IN THE GARDEN OF EDEN?

    I firmly believe that no child has knowledge of good and evil, and therefore, they are NOT LOST to begin with. We are only lost once we GET KNOWLEDGE of Good and Evil. Once we get that knowledge, THEN we DIE a spiritual death. We are NOT born spiritually dead, we die a spiritual death.

    Romans 7:9
    For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.

    Spiritually alive before he got knowledge, spiritually dead once he got knowledge.

    The law of Moses is: The KNOWLEDGE of sin.

    Romans 2:14-16 indicates that we ALSO have a conscience, and that our conscience either convicts us, or excuses us. Babies do not have even that knowledge.

    I could go on and on and on. We are born IN sin, not WITH sin. These and more are the reasons why I do not believe in a doctrine that many espouse called, “Original Sin”. We do not hold the guilt of Adam. We die a spiritual death as a result, but we do not hold Adams sin as a guilt.



  47. Sorry to hear that, Julie Anne. We had a miscarriage. It was heart wrenching for my wife. I believe God welcomes babies into His kingdom because God is love. David said he would go to see his dead baby. we are fearfully and wonderfully made. If Solomon had said it in Ecclesasties I would take it to mean just the opposite. Perhaps those who rule and reign with Christ in His millennial kingdom will be in charge of a heavenly nursery.


  48. Darrell,

    We lost two to miscarriage, just about a year apart, in October. The next October, we were again in the same part of pregnancy and there were minor problems, but the Dr. put spouse on bed rest for a couple of weeks. The result was a wonderful child, now a wonderful woman and the mother of our grandson. A little less than three years after the birth of the daughter, we welcomed a son, who has also become a fantastic adult.

    Losing a child or grandchild that late in pregnancy is difficult on everyone. Please accept our condolences and our sympathy.


  49. JA,
    Well, as a Calvinist would say, it was predetermined from the foundation of the world to happen. I just hate the way their doctrines tell them how to treat women and children. Nothing comes from the heart from that false doctrine.

    I got a great example. One of my daughters female friends has a boyfriend. She is madly in love with this guy.

    Well, one day she goes over to his house, and he is asleep. She loves him so much that while he was sleeping, she cleaned his house. She had a HEART to please him, because she loves him so much. That is the real submission that the bible discusses. It’s from the heart.

    On her twitter account, she stated that while her boyfriend was asleep, that she cleaned his house, and she hashtagged it with, #bestgirlfriendaward

    Submitting is a natural thing, because of a deep deep desire to please, based on love. When will the Calvin camp get that?

    But these Calvin folk think that submission is a demand, which is in like manner of a slave, based on a twisted interpretation of the bible of the word submit…their version is SLAVERY.

    I see that just in how ole JD makes fun of feminists. He treats women like DIRT…and based on the book, and his beliefs, I see that he treats children like dirt, too…calling it LOVE. What a whack job. I don’t understand how anyone could buy off on complementarian thought process, either. Spouses are to treat each other as to how they want to be treated themselves. If these men were treated the same that they treat women, they would be crying like a baby. And to espouse that this is the submission that the Bible talks about, that is crazy. The submission discussed in the bible is RELAX, and let God.



  50. Ah, the “age of accountability” question. That is one of those doctrines that we do not read directly from scripture, but is implied from it (such as with the doctrine of the Trinity). I always thought that everyone believed babies and young children who died went to heaven. I was brought up in a Southern Baptist church, and this was the idea that was taught and is expressed explicitly in the Baptist Faith and Message. Apparently not everyone does. RC Sproul, Jr. for example chided Billy Graham when he told families who lost children in the OKC Federal Building bombings that they would be reunited in heaven.

    “Age of accountability” is probably a poor name for the doctrine, as it seems to suggest a specific age. Most people I know don’t believe it is a specific age, as children mature at different rates.

    Ed said: “We are born IN sin, not WITH sin. These and more are the reasons why I do not believe in a doctrine that many espouse called, “Original Sin”. We do not hold the guilt of Adam. We die a spiritual death as a result, but we do not hold Adams sin as a guilt.”

    On this point, I agree with Ed. We are born with a sin nature due to Adam’s sin, but we are not born and automatically start sinning. We cannot be held guilty for the sin of another person. We are born with a sin nature, and given enough time (varrying from person to person), we all sin and rebel again God and his nature, choosing our own path over his. We are born with a fallen nature that leads to sin though, not with marks already against us.

    Ezekial 18:14,17b-20 says, “But suppose this son has a son who sees all the sins his father commits, and though he sees them, he does not do such things. 17b He will not die for his father’s sin; he will surely live. 18 But his father will die for his own sin, because he practiced extortion, robbed his brother and did what was wrong among his people. 19 “Yet you ask, ‘Why does the son not share the guilt of his father?’ Since the son has done what is just and right and has been careful to keep all my decrees, he will surely live. 20 The one who sins is the one who will die. The child will not share the guilt of the parent, nor will the parent share the guilt of the child. The righteousness of the righteous will be credited to them, and the wickedness of the wicked will be charged against them.”

    We cannot be held guilty for the sins of another, only our own. I also believe that young children are incapable of understanding mentally, emotionally, or spiritually the consequences for the choices that they make. Much research in developmental psychology has helped us to learn how people grow, develope, think, and learn. The bible speaks over and over of God’s mercy, goodness, and love. Jesus is also shown in the new testament of having a deep love for children, and we are told we should have a faith like a child. These verses and aspects of God’s character lend secondary support to the idea that God would not sent a baby to hell.


  51. Thanks for all the kind words. Her and her husband are still grieving but are planning to try again. Both her and her husband both love God. They have lots of support from God loving families on both sides and from her home church where she grew up, which is still my church, his home church where he grew up and their current home church where they go and serve God and others with a great loving pastor. She is surrounded by friends and family at the hospital where she works including my wife who is not her mother but grew up around knowing she is loved by her also. But they still have a long ways to go. She saw thru a couple I stayed friends with and tried to help that lost 2 boys on separate occasions not long after birth and saw what it did to their marriage and their walk w Christ & said Daddy, I don’t want that to happen to us. We live in a small community where everybody knows everybody and is concerned about them. We believe God has a plan in all of this for good. On a lighter and happier note, my son informs us we will be grandparents of a baby girl in Oct.

    I think some may believe I am Calvinist. Well I don’t consider myself either Calvinist or Armenian. Probably somewhere in between. I know there are different levels of Calvinistic thought. The most extreme being some are born for heaven and some for hell (Westboro, who I have been attacked by on twitter before) So I have never believed babies can go to hell. But it would seem logical that some of the extreme Calvinistic thought would have to believe this.

    Ed I had read your previous post that said pretty much the same thing and will consider it prayerfully. Again thanks for the kind words.


  52. Darrell,

    I must have missed the part where you mentioned losing a grandbaby last year. I’m so sorry to hear that. Losing a child is a truly tragic thing. I can’t fully understand that kind of heartbreak, but I do have friends and family who have lost children in miscarriages. I hope your children continue in their recovery and finding peace. Congrats on the newcoming grandchild as well. I’m still too young to be a grandparent, but I am just very recently a new first time father, as my wife and I just adopted a less than month old baby boy, so I can understand the excitement from that perspective!

    Like you, I consider myself somewhere between Calvinist and Arminian, though I think I have Calvinist leanings. I do believe your lost grandbaby is in heaven where you will be reunited someday.


  53. Darrell – You seem like such a great and supportive dad. I’m glad to hear your daughter is surrounded by many who love and care for her and your family. That must be of great comfort to you. Thank you for sharing. I really think you sharing this story is important because when it comes to living out our lives doctrinally, this is what many of us are faced with.

    I remember the very strange comments I got from Christians after one of my miscarriages that got public at church. Now it makes me wonder if they were simply projecting their doctrinal beliefs onto me in their responses that were meant to be comforting (similar to the Piper tweet after the devastating Oklahoma tornado.)


  54. Joe Joe, thanks and congrats on your adoption. Like you, I have grown up and still am SBC. Can I just mention something to you that I have mentioned in one of my sermons (I am just a fill in preacher). Your adoption of this child is so much like what Jesus did for us. He wanted us so much He was willing to pay a big price and go out and bring us into His family, just like y’all paid a big price, went out of your way to bring this child into your family to be loved and cared for. As I have worked with youth for years, most from broken homes, they may feel unloved, and your adopted child may feel someday that since they were adopted they were not wanted, cause that’s the thought of the world, but in this teaching they can find out just how special and wanted they were by not only God, but by you and your wife. We should also realize that each person we meet, whether we like them or not, including ourselves is special because God wants to bring each one of us into His family so He can enjoy time with us and He paid that ultimate cost for us through His son. Adoptive parents and adopted children are so representative of what was done for us, that they are some of my favorite people. I pray one day you will hear your child say to you, “Daddy, I am not saved, will you tell me how I can be saved” like my daughter did with me years ago and become children if the King like mine did. God bless you and your family.


  55. JoeJoe – Congratulations on your new baby. How wonderful and exciting for you to build your sweet family. Love it! My bio-dad abandoned me, but my 2nd father who came in my life legally adopted me. Although he was the dad who abused me my whole life (a whole ‘nuther story), there was something very powerful in that he “chose” me. Yes, he had his issues – obviously – but he chose to make it legal and for me to “belong” to him. Those quoted words are very significant to one who is adopted. To be chosen and to feel a sense of belonging is a wonderful thing.

    Sadly, because of the abuse issues, I do sometimes have trouble feeling that God has chosen to love me and that I belong to Him. I have to repeat scripture “truth” to myself to remind myself and also I have dear friends who also remind me.

    Abandonment issues are huge for adoptees, so if you can give your child the sense verbally/nonverbally that your beloved son was chosen and a sense of belonging not only to you, but God, wow – what a gift that will be. This sometimes ranting redhead sure gets teary eyed when getting on sensitive subjects. Pass me the kleenex. I’m so happy for you and your wife, JoeJoe. What an amazing gift you are giving a precious life. I love this:

    For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons[f] of God. 15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” 16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him. Rom 8:14-17


  56. JA, I am sorry for what some people may have said. I have learned over the last few years, just to keep my mouth shut, listen and grieve with those who are grieving.


  57. JA, many of the youth that came thru my youth group over the years had lives just like you and I wanted 2 primary things for them. To be loved, properly as Christ loves them & true salvation in which they can live their lives loving Christ and others the way Christ loves them.

    God can use situations to make us better. I heard a pastor say one time, and I still haven’t checked to see if its true, but a pearl is formed inside a clam at the spot it was injured. God can take those who are injured and make pearls out of them if they allow it.


  58. Darrell, JA, JoeJoe, An Attorney, Gary,

    Beginning with Darrell today, THIS is Christianity. Love, and compassion for other fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, whether grieving or happy.



  59. Darrell – – I had 2 great youth pastors and came to Christ in such a deep way through their modeling Christ’s unconditional love to me. What you describe is beautiful.

    I love the pearl illustration and have heard the same thing. Our 2nd daughter’s middle name is Pearl for that very reason. God can create something beautiful in brokenness. I had seen God’s work in my brokenness and wanted her name to reflect His work. I’ve told her the story before, but need to tell her again.

    Ed – that’s the daughter you met 🙂 And I concur with your comment, too!


  60. Darrell,
    So sorry to hear about your grand baby. My husband and I have two children in heaven. One daughter we lost to SIDS and the other was a little boy who had a serious chromosomal disorder which was diagnosed when I was 20 weeks pregnant. We continued the pregnancy knowing that unless the Lord healed, he would not live long. He came about 3 months early and only lived one hour.

    One thing I treasured while grieving was an article sent to us by a family friend. In the article the idea that God would create a baby for only an hour was posed. Why? Well, the answer is that He made us for eternity. Not just for a little while on this side, but forever. That made so much sense and helped me. I hope that helps you as well.

    I believe we’ll get to see our little ones again on the other side. It doesn’t change the fact that I’d rather have them here and now, but I look forward to the reunion.
    I’ve had to deal with the anger at God, questioning Him regarding this, but believe that they really are not gone forever.

    I’ll be praying for your daughter and family during this time.


  61. Thank you everyone very much! We are very excited. We’re tired (did I mention he’ll only be a month old tomorrow?), but very excited. I really do appreciate the sentiment!


    Those are the thoughts and feelings of my wife and I exactly. It is a big part of the reason that we wanted to adopt. James 1:27 says, “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” As Christians, I feel we are called to show the love of Christ to others, and especially to the most innocent and those most in need. Adoption isn’t for everybody, but my wife and I have a great love for children and felt it was right for us. We wanted to give a child the kind of home and love that they wouldn’t otherwise have. We fell in love with him the moment we saw him. He is already my son, even though we don’t share genetics. Genetics don’t determine who loves you. I love our little guy like crazy and I am SO looking forward to sharing the love of God with him. We have adopted this baby into our family as we have been adopted into God’s, and antipate the day when he says he wants to be a part of God’s family too.


  62. Saw this on my Facebook feed. I love this.

    This could very much apply to theological debate. On the topic of salvation, we have a choice between only Calvinism and Armininism. For end times prophecy, we have a choice only between pretrib and post-trib. We have boxed God into our tiny world and limit him in the name of “sound doctrine.” Within it, we sure have “lively” debate.


  63. I guess we can’t embed images. Here is the image I was talking about.

    The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum.
    – Noam Chomsky.


  64. David,

    Why not “mid-Trib”? I have sometimes described myself as “amillennial”. That is, I take no position on the millennium. And I defined “theology” as the study of what people have written and said about God, rather than the study of God himself.


  65. (I’m Pro-Millenial and Anti-Trib, BTW)
    This morning as I dropped daughter off for college, toddler grandkids became agitated— Mommy! Mommy! Rolled down window and grandkids reminded their Mommy, “Watch out for Dinosaurs!”
    “And Arminians!” I reminded her. She laughed, but it meant nothing to the toddlers.
    They KNOW dinosaurs are scary!


  66. An Attorney,
    If I am not mistaken, the simple definition of theology is “study of God”. A theologian would be the person who studied, written and said about God. And, I think we are all theologians for that matter. We don’t need a college education for that, however, as some seem to think that is a prerequisite for a title of Dr., when they heal no one, as Jesus did.


  67. Hey Dave AA

    it’s been awhile – Nice to see your still kicking….

    And I did NOT know you were a song writer.
    ““Jesus loves all the little children he intends to love” and
    “Jesus might love me, this I hope”?”

    Keep it up and the Calvinists will make you an honorary member…
    Or is that an Ornery Member?

    Oh – And Just for the record
    I’m a Pan-Millenialist…

    How ever it “Pans-out” is fine with me… 😉


  68. Anti-Trib? That’s a new one for me…And A Amos Love, Pan-Millenialist? That’s a new one for me, too. I hope it’s a FRYING pan, cuz I want chicken.

    How many more strange trib and millenial words can we come up with?

    Anti-trib, is that like anti-christ, that there will be a trib, but a fake one?

    Call me stupid, cuz I never heard of these different tribs before. Either we go thru it, or we don’t.

    Noah’s Ark…Noah was protected in the ark ABOVE THE EARTH, while people suffered in a flood BELOW the Ark.

    Come hell or high water, I will be protected from the trib in the air, while God’s wrath takes place below.

    Where are the spiritual lenses, you guys? It’s all in the Law, and the Prophets!!! Not just Daniel and Revelation.

    The End from the Beginning…it means that the end is written in Genesis. Work backwards.



  69. Ed

    Hmmm? “The End from the Beginning”

    Are you saying – We don’t know our End from our Beginning?

    Was wondering…
    Who is “The Beginning?”


  70. A Amos Love

    Isaiah 46:10
    Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done,

    Ecclesiastes 1:9
    The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.

    Ecclesiastes 3:15
    That which hath been is now; and that which is to be hath already been; and God requireth that which is past.


    It began in the Garden, it will end in the Garden.

    The mysteries of the prophesies of the future is things that already took place in the past.


    These are deep spiritual studies…while most people argue over carnal things, I am more interested in the spiritual side of things.



  71. You are discussing Jesus, and he is the author of the “end from the beginning”. It is the prophesies of action that I am discussing. Let’s not get that confused here.



  72. Ed

    You write…
    “It began in the Garden, it will end in the Garden.”

    How about…

    “The Beginning” is in “the Garden?”

    “The End” is in “The Garden?’

    Who is “the Garden of God?”


  73. OK, A Amos Love, Jesus is the Tree of Life in the Garden. And, in a sense, that is what I am talking about, but in reality, we were still discussing trib and millenial reign (not rain, by the way…It’s already rained a thousand years in Seattle…lol).

    I pointed to Noah’s Ark as the spiritual prophesy of PRE-Trib.

    That is in the book of Genesis…The end, written in the beginning (another word for Genesis).



  74. Ed asked, “Anti-trib, is that like anti-christ, that there will be a trib, but a fake one?’
    I should have put a smiley face next to that. I had in mind–There will be a trib, but (like most sane people) I’d rather not participate.
    JA Was hoping to purchase the $300+ version where the Arminians are hiding under the bed.
    Amos– Looking to build new career as calvinist children’s song-writer!
    I would have participated more in the conversation, but my usual computing device was overwhelmed with the near-500 comments and closed the window each time!
    Briefly, any system of thought which requires one to make exceptions for some children, ie the children he loves, OR which logically makes the “loving” thing to do for them to abort them before they become ‘accountable’ is a system which can use some work. Hopefully you all can think of some examples since my time on this computer is done!


  75. Monique, Wow!! My friends I referred to earlier that lost 2 children had the same thing happen. The first boy was normal, the second boy died of SIDs after 2 months, the third boy was normal and the 4th boy had that same Chromasomal thing and she was told the same thing and decided to carry him to term and he died within a couple hours after birth. It crushed them and their marriage.

    Thanks for the words you shared, I will take them to heart. They are a comfort. I had found this in my Bible study the other morning from J. Vernon McGee after he lost a child and thought I would share it. Again thanks.

    Heaven Should Be More Real To You

    The Lord Jesus has gone to prepare a place for those who are His own. Part of this preparation is the taking of your child. Heaven will mean more to you now—your dearest treasure is there. “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Matthew 6:21). He takes the family here to form the family there. Baby hands are beckoning to you, and a baby voice is calling you home.
    I did not realize how many parents there were who had lost children until our first baby was taken. One after another in the congregation came with tears in their eyes to tell of their secret sorrow. One dear lady and her husband always sat down in the front pew. They were elderly and they had a son who was a great sorrow. In spite of this, they were always smiling and seemed never to be defeated by life. I shall never forget my surprise when I discovered the reason for this as they told me of the loss of their firstborn and of their happy anticipation of seeing the little one in heaven someday.


  76. chapmaned24 –

    You wrote: “Sin is not imputed where there is no law, therefore sin does not exist to a dead person. We are dead. You cannot sin if you are dead. Dead in sin is different from dead to sin.

    See 1 John 3:4, does it say ‘should not’ or ‘cannot’?”

    My reply: 1 John 3:4 – “Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness.”

    It says neither “should not” nor “cannot.”

    You wrote: “Dead people cannot sin, period:

    Romans 7:7
    For he that is dead is freed from sin.”

    My reply: Are you saying that believers cannot sin?

    1 John 1:8 – “If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us.”

    Romans 7:7 – “What shall we say then? Is the Law sin? May it never be! On the contrary, I would not have come to know sin except through the Law; for I would not have known about coveting if the Law had not said, “You shall not covet.”

    This does not say “For he that is dead is freed from sin.”

    Verse 6 says, in part, “But now we have been released from the Law, having died to that by which we were bound…”. This says that we have died to the Law, not to sin.

    You wrote: “Verse 11:
    Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

    My reply: Rom 7:11 – “for sin, taking an opportunity through the commandment, deceived me and through it killed me.”

    Which translation are you using? Or are you saying that that is the meaning of the verse?

    You wrote: “Being dead to the law means that you are dead to sin. The law does not pertain to dead people, and therefore, sin is no more. The strength of sin is the law.

    1 Cor 15:56”

    My reply: Once again: 1 John 1:8.


  77. Jeff Brown,

    OK, OK…Romans 6:7…I said 7:7…sorry. If you had a biblegateway.com, you could have did a word search and found it…exact words:

    Romans 6:7
    For he that is dead is freed from sin.

    verse 11
    11 Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.

    Bottom line, it is LAW vs. NO LAW.

    You Calvin leaning people have absolutely NO CLUE how free you can be. You voluntarily subject yourselves to bondage.

    OK, you are just not getting me. 1 John 1:8…good. I am glad you have an opposing view of the same person that wrote 1 John 3:9 which states
    “Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.”

    The question to me is “What version are you using?” The word cannot is there.

    Other than that, I stand by everything that I laid out.

    Sin does NOT exist to us, in regards to salvation.

    BUT if you want to live in the flesh, that means that sin is alive.

    SIN IS DEAD if you are dead in the flesh. Sin is alive if you are alive in the flesh.

    Dead people do not sin.

    I stand by what I said. You are free to pick it apart. I quote scripture, so it is not opinion.



  78. I think Darrell is on the right track as to the importance of doctrine. In hard times those nuts and bolts that are the foundation of our faith do comfort us regardless of whether you are an Arminian, Calvinist or unlabeled. Today in Houston there are 4 firefighters being laid to rest after losing their lives while fighting a fire last week. One of those courageous firefighters was the sister of a dear college friend. It has been such a hard week and my friend has put out repeated requests for comfort and over and over we have responded with those “nuts and bolts” of our faith – the verses of God’s love, of the death and resurrection of Jesus, of salvation. And we have chosen to love on this friend, to allow him to talk and grieve however he needs to. Please keep the families of these brave men and woman in your prayers today. Their journeys are just beginning.


  79. I see that just in how ole JD makes fun of feminists. He treats women like DIRT…and based on the book, and his beliefs, I see that he treats children like dirt, too…calling it LOVE. What a whack job. — Ed

    A textbook example of redefining words into their diabolical meanings, My Dear Wormwood…


  80. On the topic of salvation, we have a choice between only Calvinism and Armininism. For end times prophecy, we have a choice only between pretrib and post-trib. We have boxed God into our tiny world and limit him in the name of “sound doctrine.” Within it, we sure have “lively” debate. — David C

    More like cutting each others’ throats over whether to crack an egg from the big or little end. Burning each other at the stake over how many angels can dance on the head of a pin while pastors’ widows have to eat out of dumpsters.


  81. chapmaned24 –

    I guess we’d both like to wind it up soon. Thanks for clearing it up about those verses.

    Calvin’s “Institutes” 3.19.2: “Christian freedom, in my opinion, consists of three parts. The first: that the consciences of believers, in seeking assurance of their justification before God, should rise above and advance beyond the law, forgetting all law righteousness. For since, as we have elsewhere shown, the law leaves no one righteous, either it excludes us from all hope of justification or we ought to be freed from it, and in such a way, indeed, that no account is taken of works. For he who thinks that in order to obtain righteousness he ought to bring some trifle of works is incapable of determining their measure and limit but makes himself debtor to the whole law. Removing, then, mention of law, and laying aside all consideration of works, we should, when justification is being discussed, embrace God’s mercy alone, turn our attention from ourselves, and look only to Christ.”

    This is what Calvinists, not phony “Calvinists,” believe.

    When you say that it’s “LAW or NO LAW,” is this what you are saying? If so, I completely agree, fwiw.

    But if you are saying it in regard to sanctification, I disagree. The commands in the Mosaic Law and in the NT are not to be put completely aside. Obeying them has nothing to do with our justification – that’s a done deal. However, If we are to become more like Jesus, there is no better *guide* than God’s commands throughout Scripture.

    Concerning sin: I haven’t done a language study on verses like 1 John 3:9, but I think they are referring to a continual *practice* of sin, not all sin. Otherwise, what hope do we have? Don’t all believers sin sometime?

    You wrote: “Sin does NOT exist to us, in regards to salvation.”

    If you mean that sin, like the law to which it is so connected, is irrelevant as far as our salvation is concerned, I believe that you are correct.

    You wrote: “BUT if you want to live in the flesh, that means that sin is alive.

    SIN IS DEAD if you are dead in the flesh. Sin is alive if you are alive in the flesh.

    Dead people do not sin.”

    I assume you are referring to the first part of Romans 8, or passages like it. I think Paul is saying there that a believer’s life is a mixture of sometimes being in the flesh, sometimes in the spirit, but that we should strive to live more in the spirit than the flesh. We are dead when we are living in the spirit, and when we are living in the spirit we do not sin. When we are alive to the flesh, we sin.

    Or, once again, do you think that believers live all of the time in the spirit, and, therefore, never sin?

    I’m sorry if I come across as picking apart what you write. I just want to understand.


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