Leithart Redux in the Siouxlands' Presbytery

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bouletheou

Puritan Board Freshman
Textus Unreceptus

Perhaps if we could add another toolbar element out of Microsoft Word, we could force-justify the text and drag it kicking and screaming into a state of justification, making all the Arminian typists who observe us say "See, I told you that was what they believed!":think:

Though it still would not solve our issue here as to whether or not the sort of justification my signature is receiving is the sort that endures to the end, and how we might tell the difference between the decreetally elect justification and the non-decreetally elect justification. I do know that we ought not ask the text to do any internal examination or speculation, but rather tell it to look wholly to Bill Gates.
 
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MW

Puritanboard Amanuensis
I understand the reasoning, but it sounds odd to me.
Ivan, consider a text like 2 Peter 2:1, "denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction." One who holds to particular redemption is obliged to explain in what sense the Lord is said to have bought those who ultimately suffer destruction. It is perhaps the failure of the modern reformed church to clearly articulate a doctrine of the visible church which has opened the door for a false view as to how the benefits of Christ relate to the non elect.
 

TimV

Puritanboard Botanist
Pastor W, isn't that verse talking about Jews who deny Christ is God? I understand that bought them is OT grammar for God delivering His people. In other words, Peter is saying whoever denies that Christ is God denies He who ransomed His people. So if a Jew says that Christ is not God he is denying the God of the OT.
 

Edward

Puritanboard Commissioner
BTW, I'm not being a scofflaw. My signature worked once and then quit working. I see it in the preview changes mode, but it's not showing up when I publish.

Perhaps my signature function possesses only temporary faith. It is not appearing at the end when it counts.
Signatures appearing only in the first post that someone makes on the thread is a 'feature' of this board. It's an issue where I submit meekly to the board leadership.
 

TeachingTulip

Puritan Board Sophomore
Pastor W, isn't that verse talking about Jews who deny Christ is God? I understand that bought them is OT grammar for God delivering His people. In other words, Peter is saying whoever denies that Christ is God denies He who ransomed His people. So if a Jew says that Christ is not God he is denying the God of the OT.
I have been taught that this verse signifies external deliverance of the nation of Israel and the like deliverance (external sanctification) of the visible N.T. churches. God is sovereign over all; He "owns" all men, but His specific covenant promises of internal regeneration and justification does not extend to all.

Such purchase and redemption unto salvation is only realized and manifested in the invisible church body, elected in Christ, before the foundation of the world.

In other words,'s, external sanctification and "deliverance" does not equate with internal regeneration and justification; such being known only by the elect of God; His invisible church body.

My :2cents:
 

MW

Puritanboard Amanuensis
Pastor W, isn't that verse talking about Jews who deny Christ is God? I understand that bought them is OT grammar for God delivering His people. In other words, Peter is saying whoever denies that Christ is God denies He who ransomed His people. So if a Jew says that Christ is not God he is denying the God of the OT.

If they are denying Christ is God, and He is the Lord that bought them, there is no way of separating redemption from that which Christ accomplished.
 

Ivan

Pastor
I understand the reasoning, but it sounds odd to me.
Ivan, consider a text like 2 Peter 2:1, "denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction." One who holds to particular redemption is obliged to explain in what sense the Lord is said to have bought those who ultimately suffer destruction. It is perhaps the failure of the modern reformed church to clearly articulate a doctrine of the visible church which has opened the door for a false view as to how the benefits of Christ relate to the non elect.
Thank you, Matthew. That helps. The thorny-ground, good-ground concept helps as well. I have a better understanding of what is being expounded here.

And maybe it's just the bump on my head.
 

TimV

Puritanboard Botanist
If they are denying Christ is God, and He is the Lord that bought them, there is no way of separating redemption from that which Christ accomplished.
Just to clarify this for me as well, if the verse paraphrased is "Those of your fellow ethnic Jews who reject Christ are rejecting the God of the burning bush, who ransomed the whole Jewish nation from Egypt, even though they may be ignorant of the fact" then does that verse necessarily have anything to do with Christians?
 

discipulo

Puritan Board Junior
Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away John 15:2

I find that distinction between Invisible and Visible Church is aboslutely required to understand there are unregenerate members of the Covenant, that later may not make professions of faith or deny their profession.

in my opinion this is the only sound interpretation of several passages Hebrews 6, 2 Peter 2:20 ff, John 15:2, etc, since it accepts its dreadful warning while maintaining the perseverance of the saints, that true regenerated christians, partakers of the substance of the Covenant will persevere to Glory Romans 8:29-30

Karl Barth was one voice that denied that distinction, but he messed up with a lot of biblical doctrines.

But how about Klaas Schilder and John Murray, who also argued against that distinction between Visible and Invisible Church ?

Did they provide any strong arguments to the Federal Vision Folks?
 

Dearly Bought

Puritan Board Junior
Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away John 15:2

I find that distinction between Invisible and Visible Church is aboslutely required to understand there are unregenerate members of the Covenant, that later may not make professions of faith or deny their profession.

in my opinion this is the only sound interpretation of several passages Hebrews 6, 2 Peter 2:20 ff, John 15:2, etc, since it accepts its dreadful warning while maintaining the perseverance of the saints, that true regenerated christians, partakers of the substance of the Covenant will persevere to Glory Romans 8:29-30

Karl Barth was one voice that denied that distinction, but he messed up with a lot of biblical doctrines.

But how about Klaas Schilder and John Murray, who also argued against that distinction between Visible and Invisible Church ?

Did they provide any strong arguments to the Federal Vision Folks?
I'm no Schilder scholar (I don't even read Dutch). However, Kloosterman's essay on Schilder and the legal/vital distinction gives me pause before yielding him to the FV.
 

discipulo

Puritan Board Junior
Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away John 15:2

I find that distinction between Invisible and Visible Church is aboslutely required to understand there are unregenerate members of the Covenant, that later may not make professions of faith or deny their profession.

in my opinion this is the only sound interpretation of several passages Hebrews 6, 2 Peter 2:20 ff, John 15:2, etc, since it accepts its dreadful warning while maintaining the perseverance of the saints, that true regenerated christians, partakers of the substance of the Covenant will persevere to Glory Romans 8:29-30

Karl Barth was one voice that denied that distinction, but he messed up with a lot of biblical doctrines.

But how about Klaas Schilder and John Murray, who also argued against that distinction between Visible and Invisible Church ?

Did they provide any strong arguments to the Federal Vision Folks?
I'm no Schilder scholar (I don't even read Dutch). However, Kloosterman's essay on Schilder and the legal/vital distinction gives me pause before yielding him to the FV.
Thank you, that is very helpful, I appreciate a lot Kloosterman's teachings, and he made his PHd in the GKvrigemaakt Theological School in Kampen, Holland, and Schilder is the founder of the GKv departing from GKN in 1944. So Kloosterman is very well prepared to adress Schilder, I will read with great interest.

I was not, by any way, suggesting that Schilder or Murray had anything to do with FV, after all they departed to the Lord long before FV proponents started to spread their error.

And while both Murray and Schilder were strong critics of Barthianism, the Covenant revision made by Murray, erasing the PreLapsarian Adamic Covenant of Works, has a certain Barthian flair about it.

It is again Grace Flattening Redemptive History.

So I wonder what FV took from Schilder, Murray (and Barth for the same matter) to their theological ammunitions, so to speak.
 

bouletheou

Puritan Board Freshman
Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away John 15:2

I find that distinction between Invisible and Visible Church is aboslutely required to understand there are unregenerate members of the Covenant, that later may not make professions of faith or deny their profession.


Discipulo,

In what way are you using the phrase "members of the Covenant?"

Blessings,
TE Brian Carpenter whose full signature may or may not be appended.
 
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PuritanCovenanter

Moderator
Staff member
If they are denying Christ is God, and He is the Lord that bought them, there is no way of separating redemption from that which Christ accomplished.
Just to clarify this for me as well, if the verse paraphrased is "Those of your fellow ethnic Jews who reject Christ are rejecting the God of the burning bush, who ransomed the whole Jewish nation from Egypt, even though they may be ignorant of the fact" then does that verse necessarily have anything to do with Christians?
I know this is a derailed thought here but I like Gill on 2 Peter 2:1. And It answers Ivans question in my opinion.

who privily shall bring in damnable heresies: errors in the fundamental doctrines of the Gospel; such as relate to a trinity of persons in the Godhead; and to the person of Christ, to his proper deity, distinct personality, eternal sonship, and real humanity; and to his office as Mediator, rejecting him as the true Messiah, and as the only Saviour of sinners; denying his sacrifice and satisfaction, and the imputation of his righteousness; and to the Holy Spirit, his deity, personality, and divine influences and operations: these are "damnable", or "destructive", or "heresies of destruction"; which lead to eternal destruction both those that introduce and propagate them, and those that embrace and profess them; for they remove, or attempt to remove, the foundation of eternal life and happiness: the manner in which these are usually introduced is "privily"; at unawares, secretly, under a disguise, and gradually, by little and little, and not at once, and openly; and which is the constant character and practice of such men, who lie in wait to deceive, creep into churches at unawares, and into houses privately; and insinuate their principles under specious pretences and appearances of truth, using the hidden things of dishonesty, walking in craftiness, handling the word of God deceitfully, and colouring things with false glosses and feigned words: and even denying the Lord that bought them; not the Lord Jesus Christ, but God the Father; for the word κυριος is not here used, which always is where Christ is spoken of as the Lord, but δεσποτης; and which is expressive of the power which masters have over their servants (i), and which God has over all mankind; and wherever this word is elsewhere used, it is spoken of God the Father, whenever applied to a divine person, as in Luk_2:29 and especially this appears to be the sense, from the parallel text in Jud_1:4 where the Lord God denied by those men is manifestly distinguished from our Lord Jesus Christ, and by whom these persons are said to be bought: the meaning is not that they were redeemed by the blood of Christ, for Christ is not intended; and besides, whenever redemption by Christ is spoken of, the price is usually mentioned, or some circumstance or another which fully determines the sense; see Act_20:28 whereas here is not the least hint of anything of this kind: add to this, that such who are redeemed by Christ are the elect of God only, the people of Christ, his sheep and friends, and church, and who are never left to deny him so as to perish eternally; for could such be lost, or deceive, or be deceived finally and totally by damnable heresies, and bring on themselves swift destruction, Christ's purchase would be in vain, and the ransom price be paid for nought; but the word "bought" regards temporal mercies and deliverance, which these men enjoyed, and is used as an aggravation of their sin in denying the Lord; both by words, delivering out such tenets as are derogatory to the glory of the divine perfections, and which deny one or other of them, and of his purposes, providence, promises, and truths; and by works, turning the doctrine of the grace of God into lasciviousness, being disobedient and reprobate to every good work; that they should act this part against the Lord who had made them, and upheld them in their beings and took care of them in his providence, and had followed them with goodness and mercy all the days of their lives; just as Moses aggravates the ingratitude of the Jews in Deu_32:6 from whence this phrase is borrowed, and to which it manifestly refers: "do ye thus requite the Lord, O foolish people and unwise! is not he thy Father that hath bought thee? hath he not made thee, and established thee?" nor is this the only place the apostle refers to in this chapter, see 2Pe_2:12 compared with Deu_32:5 and it is to be observed, that the persons he writes to were Jews, who were called the people the Lord had redeemed and purchased, Exo_15:13 and so were the first false teachers that rose up among them; and therefore this phrase is very applicable to them:
 

discipulo

Puritan Board Junior
Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away John 15:2

I find that distinction between Invisible and Visible Church is aboslutely required to understand there are unregenerate members of the Covenant, that later may not make professions of faith or deny their profession.


Discipulo,

In what way are you using the phrase "members of the Covenant?"

Blessings,
TE Brian Carpenter whose full signature may or may not be appended.
Pastor Carpenter, no need to use the red colour.

There is a difference between those who partake of the external

administration of the covenant, preaching of the word and sacraments,

and are part of the visible church, but may or may not be regenerate,

like the children of believers till they profess faith, and even so, there are

unfortunately false professions too. And there could be regeneration on a tender

age, that's why A Kuyper wrongly emphasized presumed regeneration, like

with John the Baptist.

And those who also partake of the internal inward substance of the covenant

by regeneration. Those are the Elect of God and the Invisible Church.

But these only God knows. So we keep this distinction of Invisible / Visible, Inward / External

Herman Bavinck RD vol 2 page 231


After reading Dr Kloosterman very interesting article I went to Louis Berkhof

Systematic Theology (4th revised edition, pages 284-289) on the Dual

Aspect of the Covenant, and Berkhoff follows Vos and Schilder here, he

prefers to drop the inward outward formulation for a Legal Relationship vs

Communion of Life page 286, so for Berkhof only the regenerated memebers

of the Covenant actually partake in Union with Christ of this Life Communion.

I'm glad that this doesn't put any FV charge on Schilders, In my humble opinion.
 

bouletheou

Puritan Board Freshman
Red Letters

Discipulo,

I meant no offense by using the red letters. I'm pushing all the right buttons but not getting the effect I desired. My expedient was to color your words (in the legal and not the communion life sense.)

I have to meditate on what you've said and consult my Berkhoff. My trouble, off the top of my head, (and it may very well be an ignorant and uniformed trouble) is that justification is something we've always put in the legal category as well.

What little I know of Schilder has bothered me a little bit and seemed, at least at the level of appearances, to have some overlap with F.V. But since I'm not Dutch (and therefore not Much) it has not been a pressing issue for me to resolve.

Kindest Regards,
 

MW

Puritanboard Amanuensis
On 2 Peter 2:1, the "Lord" must be Christ because no heretic would be so bold as to deny God absolutely considered. If it is granted that Christ is "the Lord who bought them," there can be no doubt that Peter is referring to the work of Christ. Verse 20 makes this explicit: "For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning."

On Schilder, his view is easily accepted on the basis that all saving benefits the reprobate receive are "seeming" benefits. Geerhardus Vos draws a very important distinction between phenomenological and real believers in his small work on the epistle to the Hebrews. It is well worth consulting for a balanced view of the warning passages.

On Murray, I doubt he actually denied the distinction between visible and invisible, but merely saw something infelicitous in the language and its usage. Sadly, by making "visibility" an essential component of his understanding of "church," he opened the door for folk to move towards Rome; but his exposition of election and its benefits serves to drag such folk back into the halls of orthodoxy.
 

charliejunfan

Puritan Board Senior
I thought this might go along with the discussion;)

John Owen (from his catechisms) on saving and temporary faith
Two Short Catechisms | Christian Classics Ethereal Library

Q. 1. By what means do we become actual members of this church of God?

A. By a lively justifying faith, whereby we are united unto Christ, the head thereof.
Acts ii. 47, xiii. 48; Heb. xi. 6, xii. 22, 23, iv. 2; Rom. v. 1, 2; Eph. ii. 13, 14.

Q. 2. What is a justifying faith?

A. A gracious resting upon the free promises of God in Jesus Christ for mercy, with a firm persuasion of heart that God is a reconciled Father unto us in the Son of his love.
1 Tim. i. 16; Job xiii. 15, xix. 25; Rom. iv. 5. Heb. iv. 16; Rom. viii. 38, 39; Gal. ii. 20; 2 Cor. v. 20, 21.

Q. 3. Have all this faith?

A. None but the elect of God.
Tit. i. 1; John x. 26; Matt. xiii. 11; Acts xiii. 48; Rom. viii. 30.

Q. 4. Do not, then, others believe that make profession?

A. Yes; with, first, historical faith, or a persuasion that the things written in the Word are true, James ii. 19; secondly, temporary faith, which hath some joy of the affections, upon unspiritual grounds, in the things believed.
Matt. xiii. 20; Mark vi. 20; John ii. 23, 24; Acts viii. 13.

Q. 1. How come we to have this saving faith?

A. It is freely bestowed upon us and wrought in us by the Spirit of God, in our vocation or calling.
John vi. 29, 44; Eph. ii. 8, 9; Phil. i. 29; 2 Thess. i. 11.
 

PuritanCovenanter

Moderator
Staff member
On 2 Peter 2:1, the "Lord" must be Christ because no heretic would be so bold as to deny God absolutely considered. If it is granted that Christ is "the Lord who bought them," there can be no doubt that Peter is referring to the work of Christ. Verse 20 makes this explicit: "For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning."

On Schilder, his view is easily accepted on the basis that all saving benefits the reprobate receive are "seeming" benefits. Geerhardus Vos draws a very important distinction between phenomenological and real believers in his small work on the epistle to the Hebrews. It is well worth consulting for a balanced view of the warning passages.

On Murray, I doubt he actually denied the distinction between visible and invisible, but merely saw something infelicitous in the language and its usage. Sadly, by making "visibility" an essential component of his understanding of "church," he opened the door for folk to move towards Rome; but his exposition of election and its benefits serves to drag such folk back into the halls of orthodoxy.
Reverend Winzer,
Are you saying that someone can come to a saving knowledge of the Lord and be redeemed by him and not be justified? Confusing.

Gill again.....
2Pe 2:20 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world,.... The sins of it, the governing vices of it, which the men of the world are addicted to, and immersed in; for the whole world lies in wickedness, and which are of a defiling nature: the phrase is Rabbinical; it is said (q),

"he that studies not in the law in this world, but is defiled בטנופי עלמא, "with the pollutions of the world", what is written of him? and they took him, and cast him without:''

these, men may escape, abstain from, and outwardly reform, with respect unto, and yet be destitute of the grace of God; so that this can be no instance of the final and total apostasy of real saints; for the house may be swept and garnished with an external reformation; persons may be outwardly righteous before men, have a form of godliness and a name to live, and yet be dead in trespasses and sins; all which they may have

through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. The Vulgate Latin, and all the Oriental versions, read, our Lord, and the latter leave out, "and Saviour"; by which "knowledge" is meant, not a spiritual experimental knowledge of Christ, for that is eternal life, the beginning, pledge, and earnest of it; but a notional knowledge of Christ, or a profession of knowledge of him, for it may be rendered "acknowledgment"; or rather the Gospel of Christ, which, being only notionally received, may have such an effect on men, as outwardly to reform their lives, at least in some instances, and for a while, in whose hearts it has no place. Now if, after all this knowledge and reformation,

they are again entangled therein; in the pollutions of the world, in worldly lusts, which are as gins, pits and snares:

and overcome; by them, so as to be laden with them, and led away, and entirely governed and influenced by them:

the latter end, or state,

is worse with them than the beginning; see Mat_12:45. Their beginning, or first estate, was that in which they were born, a state of darkness, ignorance, and sin, and in which they were brought up, and was either the state of Judaism, or of Gentilism; their next estate was an outward deliverance and escape from the error of the one, or of the other, and an embracing and professing the truth of the Christian religion, joined with a becoming external conversation; and this their last estate was an apostasy from the truth of the Gospel they had professed, a reception of error and heresy, and a relapse into sin and immorality, which made their case worse than it was at first; for, generally, such persons are more extravagant in sinning; are like raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; and are seldom, or ever, recovered; and by their light, knowledge, and profession, their punishment will be more aggravated, and become intolerable.

(q) Zohar in Gen. fol. 104. 3. Vid. Bechinot Olam, p. 178.
 

MW

Puritanboard Amanuensis
Are you saying that someone can come to a saving knowledge of the Lord and be redeemed by him and not be justified? Confusing.
I don't see anywhere in my post which even hints at this, Randy. Someone can come to a knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ, and be considered in the judgment of charity to be redeemed, called, justified, adopted, and sanctified; but for all that still eventually deny the Lord that they claim has bought them, because they never came to a genuine saving knowledge of Christ. Hence my second paragraph drew attention to the phenomenal/noumenal distinction.
 

PuritanCovenanter

Moderator
Staff member
Are you saying that someone can come to a saving knowledge of the Lord and be redeemed by him and not be justified? Confusing.
I don't see anywhere in my post which even hints at this, Randy. Someone can come to a knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ, and be considered in the judgment of charity to be redeemed, called, justified, adopted, and sanctified; but for all that still eventually deny the Lord that they claim has bought them, because they never came to a genuine saving knowledge of Christ. Hence my second paragraph drew attention to the phenomenal/noumenal distinction.
The problem with what you are saying, and what I am seeing, maybe that the passage doesn't say anything (2 Peter 2:1) about those individuals claiming that Christ has bought them. It just says, "denying the Lord that bought them." I believe John Gill has hit the nail on the head here in light of Peter's ministry and those who Paul warns us about who have fallen from Grace preaching another gospel and turning the liberated unto bondage of the Old Covenant law. I see this perspective especially since Peter himself was deceived and turned back to truth by Paul. Paul even gets a commendation from Peter in the next chapter.

As I said, I believe John Gill hits the nail on the head here. I mean no disrespect to you Reverend.
 

MW

Puritanboard Amanuensis
As I said, I believe John Gill hits the nail on the head here. I mean no disrespect to you Reverend.
It is no disrespect to me, Randy. But for your own sake, I would ask you to look a little further into the subject and not simply lay hold of an answer because it resonates with your theological system. Another answer might provide a richer and fuller exposition of theology, which does not in reality contradict your sysytem. Even if one explained away verse 1 in Gill's manner, one still has to wrestle with verse 20; but it makes sense to me to interpret the text as an integrated unit and to see verse 1 as addressing the same problem as verse 20.
 
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