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Sunday, February 22, 2015

Sunday Encouragement February 22, 2015

God gave us a double message this morning from our Sunday School teacher and our Pastor. They had not discussed their preparations. I love when God works to confirm messages.

Our Sunday School teacher spoke on the doctrine of “Eternal Salvation”. Specifically he compared the basic principles of Calvinism with the principles of Arminianism.
The tenents of Calvin are represented as “Tulip”:
• Total depravity - no hope.
• Unconditional election - only God selects; man has no choice.
• Limited atonement - Christ died on the cross only for those God selected.
• Irresistible grace - You have no chose as you will be saved if you are chosen. Therefore the salvation is “irresistible”.
• Perseverance of saints - you are secure because you are chosen.
Arminianism proports the argument of ‘free will’. The free will of an individual is not enslaved to salvation but must choose to accept God's salvation by faith. The counter positions to Calvinism are:
• Partial depravity - Man has goodness in his character as well as evil; there is hope through faith.
• Predestination is only due to fore knowledgee of who will choose to accept salvation; but not who is chosen by God.
• Unlimited atonement for all - God wants “no one” to perish; salvation is offered to “whomsoever” would come (John 3:16).
• Grace may be rejected.
• A believer can fall away.
Romans 8: 38-39 says that ‘nothing can separate us from the love of God’...that is God’s unconditional love, but not salvation.
(There are many supporting scriptures which I am having emailed to me.)

Our Pastor’s sermon was entitled: “Security of Salvation”.
The grace of God gives us assurance. Our Salvation is based on our faith but a person can chose to live in sin and reject grace. Sin is powerful but not more powerful than God's grace. Grace should be working in you to grow righteousness, not working toward apathy or hardening of your heart.

The bottomline message from both: God chooses all people, but we have free will to accept the salvation that is offered. It is error to think that you can accept salvation and then choose to “live as you want”, even if it is sinful. Salvation requires faith and a sincere desire to want to be obedient to God. God knows and judges the secrets of our hearts.

We cannot always understand the doctrines that scholars argue about.
But we can know our Savior -- through faith!
Verses for Today:
Hebrews 3:13-14 NIV
13 But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. 14 We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firmly to the very end.

I am so thankful that God chose me and even more thankful that I choose to believe that Christ died on the cross for my salvation, to redeem me to fellowship.

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