There is something healthy about returning to one’s roots. When it comes to evangelical Christianity, its roots are found in the soil of the sixteenth-century Protestant Reformation.

What Does the Phrase 'Dead in Sin" Mean?

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  • What Does the Phrase 'Dead in Sin" Mean?

    by John Hendryx


    "And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins" - Ephesians 2:1

    "Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved " - Ephesians 2:5

    "And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses" - Colossians 2:13


    What does the phrase 'dead in sin" mean? What does it mean to be spiritual dead? And how did these simple concepts become so convoluted?

    Arminian or synergistic arguments against the Calvinist interpretation 'dead in sin' usually go something like this: There is no Scriptural evidence for the mistaken calvinistic notion that spiritual death means to be like a physically dead corpse and so nonresponsive and unable to believe the gospel. the Reformed view of "spiritually dead" or "dead in sin", they claim, refers to dead spirit of man, that (the inner spirit) is what is dead. Therefore the Calvinist comparison of a dead body’s inability to respond with a dead spirit’s ability to respond is fundamentally flawed...and that if the Bible says unsaved humans are “dead in our sin” this alone is insufficient for making deductions about the dead spirit’s inability to choose Christ. If that is the case, they reason, then spiritually dead people should not be able to do anything more than corpses can do, which want to show is plainly absurd. An often used example:

    To prove the Calvinist view of "dead in sin" is wrong, notice the Bible plainly teaches that those who are dead in sin can resist the Holy Spirit. Now have you ever seen a corpse resist something? Of course not. So if we adopt the implications of the Calvinistic definition of “dead in sin” then we must deny that anyone who is dead in sin can resist the Holy Spirit or reject the gospel (Acts 7:51; 2 Thess. 2:10; 1 John 4:10; Rom. 10:21). Corpses can’t resist or reject anything any more than they can see or hear anything. This, they reason, shows that Calvinists have misinterpreted the meaning of dead in sin.

    Dead is dead, right?, they say. “How do men “dead to sin” choose pornography, marital infidelity, etc.? In other words, they reason that Calvinists take the phrase “dead in sin” too far. Arminians will propose that “dead in sin” means something less than living “as a walking cadaver in a spiritual graveyard” whose “ear is deaf to any word from heaven” (Sproul). They will say they have read Calvinistic articles that argue things like man is no more capable of responding to God’s offer of salvation than a corpse is of responding to an offer of a fine meal. But man can respond, they say.So what do Arminians claim that “dead in sin” really means?In the context of a series of verses that like Ephesians 2:1-3, Paul says that the Gentiles are “excluded from the life of God” (Ephesians 4:18). “Excluded” could also be translated “alienated.” Arminians usually propose that “dead to sin” means that man is alienated, hostile, separated from God, and void of eternal life. To be dead in sin means to be separated from God (and, thus, His life). But it does not mean he is incapable of responding to the gospel.. Death is separation, Arminians argue, not simply a termination or cessation of life. Physical death is the separation of spirit from body. The body ceases to live and decay begins, but the spirit continues to exist.

    When Paul says, “The wages of sin is death,” he is not simply referring to the cessation of corporeal existence, the Arminian argues. Therefore, to the Arminian, spiritual death for the natural man is better understood as separation from God and not in terms like, “spiritual cadaver” or “spiritual corpse.” If you use terms like that, then you have to refer to a “walking cadaver.” In other words, you’ve got to have a cadaver who still functions somehow. It’s better to just go with “separation from God.” Again Arminians will argue that if unregenerate man is cadaver-like and incapable of hearing from God and believing in Him, then, they reason, why aren’t regenerate men cadaver-like with respect to sin, Satan, and this world?

    Response: All of these arguments actually reveal a fundamental misconception of what is meant by Calvinists when they use the biblical phrase "dead in sin" to refer to man's spiritual inability to respond to the gospel. Furthermore, I believe I can fully demonstrate that classic Arminians believe almost exactly the same thing as Calvinists with regard to man's natural condition apart from the Holy Spirit.

    Stay with me here because I believe a lot of unnecessary ink has been spilled over this issue. Scripturally speaking, "Spiritually dead" refers to the idea that the unregenerate man (that is, the person without the Holy Spirit) is dead to spiritual things. His utter inability to respond the spiritual truth is due to the fact that he is unspiritual, of the flesh. Jesus said, "that which is born of flesh is flesh, and that which is born of Spirit is Spirit... The Spirit gives life but the flesh counts for nothing...that is why I told you that no one can come to me unless God grants it" (John 3:3, 6; 6:63,65) The person who is flesh is unregenerate and therefore dead in sin or spiritually dead. He is dead to spiritual things BUT IS ALIVE TO THE FLESH. That is why he can love sin and resist the Holy Spirit. Notice in the three quotes from Ephesians and Colossians at the top of this article... in each instance, quickening or regeneration is the solution to the problem of being dead in sin. What is that? It is the work of the Holy Spirit. That is, apart from regeneration, the sinner remains dead in sin or in his natural condition of original sin. To drive home the point, lets ask, can a person come to Christ apart from any help from the Spirit?

    The Scripture says that "no one can say "Jesus is Lord" except in the Holy Spirit." (1 Cor 12:3) So "spiritually dead" does not mean man has a dead spirit, but rather is void of the Holy Spirit and therefore is dead to spiritual things. Paul said, "For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness" (Rom 6:20).

    Again, in another critical passage on the subject, Paul said,

    "But we impart a secret and hidden wisdom of God... these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For ...no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, THAT WE MIGHT UNDERSTAND the things freely given us by God. And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who are spiritual. The NATURAL PERSON does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is NOT ABLE to understand them because they are SPIRITUALLY DISCERNED." (1 Cor 2:7; 10-14) (emphasis mine)

    Spiritual truth spoken to an unregenerate man is not discerned, foolish and unacceptable unless God reveals it to us by his Spirit, and he gave His Spirit that we might understand, as the text says. What is ironic about this whole thing is that the very Arminians who spill so much ink refuting this actually believe this very same thing. I would like to issue the following challenge to any Arminian or synergist: Can a natural person, left to themselves, even lift a finger toward their own salvation? or have any response whatsoever to the gospel APART FROM the work of the Holy Spirit? No, in fact traditional Arminianism teaches that unless the Holy Spirit grants "prevenient grace" then there is not even the possibility of any response. So frankly I am baffled as to why Arminians would spend time writing countless articles in an attempt to refute something which they themselves already affirm. The very necessity of prevenient grace to the Arminian excludes the possibility of a response by those dead in sin, and demonstrates beyond any further question, that they fully embrace the term "spiritually dead" in the exact same way as the traditional Calvinist. This is not where these to camps differ. The difference is whether this working of the Holy Spirit in the heart of the unbeliever prior to salvation is monergistic or synergistic....whether it effectually accomplishes God's intended design or whether such grace can be resisted by man. That is really where we differ, not over the meaning of the phrase "dead in sin". At least the concept of total inability to respond is precisely the same apart from grace.

    To review, man's natural condition is that we have no spiritual life in us and are therefore dead to the things of God. By nature we have a moral inability an thus no inclination to believe the Christ of the Gospel. Prior to being born from above were are in bondage to our sinful impulses, unless and until the Spirit first opens our blind eyes, deaf ears and stony hearts to the gospel.

    But lest there be any misunderstanding, lets be clear, the Apostle Paul wrote that even though the natural man is 'dead in sin', that 'faith comes by hearing, and hearing the word of God.'(Rom 10:17). No one is saved apart from believing the gospel. But Paul also teaches that the word must be accompanied by the Holy Spirit or it will fall on deaf ears. In 1 Thess 1: 4,5 he says,

    "For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not only in word, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction."He knows they are chosen by God because the gospel he preached was impressed upon their renewed hearts by the Spirit, without which, he could preach till he is blue in the face and they would never respond. In a like manner, a farmer can do all the things necessary to plant crops, but unless God blesses his work with rain from above, the farmer's work will not be productive. Our job, the scripture teaches, is to preach the gospel, declaring to the world the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ (John 5:24). We plant and water, but God alone causes the growth and opens the heart.Paul said that we are to 'persuade' unbelievers, and to 'reason' with them, and this was his own practice. Now why would Paul write and practice this if he knew people are as dead as Lazarus and incapable of believing or hearing the truth? Because it is only through the proclaimed gospel accompanied by the effectual working of the Holy Spirit to change a heart of stone to a heart of flesh that one believes in Jesus. So yes, Jesus is asking us to do what is impossible. He asks us to preach to those dead in sin... to people who cannot and will not respond. But being impossibe should never stop us from obeying and being used as a means to accomplish Jesus’ end, because "what is impossible with man [faith and repentance] is possible with God." So we do not let the fact that we can’t cause the new birth stop us from heralding the gospel to all creatures. That is, in fact, how people are born again, through the good news of Jesus Christ as the Holy Spirit opens their ears to it.

    So I believe this clearly demonstrates that this whole argument against the Calvinist understanding of "spiritually dead" does not make sense because, apart from Arminian prevenient grace, they believe the same thing about the natural state man. Where we differ is over the nature of saving grace ... not over our inability believe or respond apart from the work of the Holy Spirit.

  • #2
    We are dead in sin since the wages of sin is death Romans 6:23 and we are all sinners. We physically are alive for a short time, but spiritually we are dead (being separated from God and sinful). God has chosen from the foundation of the world (Revelation 17:8) who shall be saved and by giving those in that Book of Life the Holy Spirit, we are quickened (made spiritually alive) and all sin is forgiven, washed away by the blood of the Lamb. That's past, present, and future sin, as God knows what He is doing and knows what we did and will do, yet saves us by grace through faith, a gift from Him, which saves us; all sin is as good as gone once it is committed. We do sin, but Jesus' mercy endureth forever, and separates us from it as far as the east is from the west. Notice He did not say as far as the north is from the south? If one were to go north long enough we'd start heading south, and vice-versa; but, when one heads east or west, we just keep on going, never to meet again. Such is true with our sin when Jesus removes it. This is just an amazing creation. Ever notice that when we are saved that the spiritual things of the Bible become clear for the first time and we hunger for the word? That is the work of the Holy Spirit on a quickened individual. Only God can raise the dead. Good commentary from Hendryx.
    Comment>

    • #3
      Originally posted by Stratcat View Post
      We are dead in sin since the wages of sin is death Romans 6:23 and we are all sinners. We physically are alive for a short time, but spiritually we are dead (being separated from God and sinful). God has chosen from the foundation of the world (Revelation 17:8) who shall be saved and by giving those in that Book of Life the Holy Spirit, we are quickened (made spiritually alive) and all sin is forgiven, washed away by the blood of the Lamb. That's past, present, and future sin, as God knows what He is doing and knows what we did and will do, yet saves us by grace through faith, a gift from Him, which saves us; all sin is as good as gone once it is committed. We do sin, but Jesus' mercy endureth forever, and separates us from it as far as the east is from the west. Notice He did not say as far as the north is from the south? If one were to go north long enough we'd start heading south, and vice-versa; but, when one heads east or west, we just keep on going, never to meet again. Such is true with our sin when Jesus removes it. This is just an amazing creation. Ever notice that when we are saved that the spiritual things of the Bible become clear for the first time and we hunger for the word? That is the work of the Holy Spirit on a quickened individual. Only God can raise the dead. Good commentary from Hendryx.
      Are you suggesting that we can commit serious sin, never repent, and still go to heaven?

      Comment>

      • #4
        Originally posted by Bede View Post

        Are you suggesting that we can commit serious sin, never repent, and still go to heaven?
        Hello Bede,

        Hope you do not mind me popping in and engaging. I believe no one is suggesting that we cannot commit serious sin and never repent. This is actually the "default" position or "natural man." Hendryx states: ,"To review, man's natural condition is that we have no spiritual life in us and are therefore dead to the things of God. By nature we have a moral inability an thus no inclination to believe the Christ of the Gospel. Prior to being born from above were are in bondage to our sinful impulses, unless and until the Spirit first opens our blind eyes, deaf ears and stony hearts to the gospel." I agree, man has no desire for the things of God or God himself until Regeneration. Regeneration conditions us and plants correct desire, and not only that but also "enables" us to produce the fruits of Regeneration by the Holy Spirit:

        Link.14" class="rtBibleRef">1 Corinthians 2:14 - The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned.

        Link.4" class="rtBibleRef">Deuteronomy 29:4 - "But to this day the LORD has not given you a heart to understand or eyes to see or ears to hear."

        Link.6-7" class="rtBibleRef">1 Corinthians 3:6-7 - I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth.

        Link.1-9" class="rtBibleRef">Matthew 13:1-9 - That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the sea. 2 And great crowds gathered about him, so that he got into a boat and sat down. And the whole crowd stood on the beach. 3 And he told them many things in parables, saying: “A sower went out to sow. 4 And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. 5 Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, 6 but when the sun rose they were scorched. And since they had no root, they withered away. 7 Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. 8 Other seeds fell on good soil and produced grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. 9 He who has ears,[a] let him hear.

        Link.18" class="rtBibleRef">Mark 8:18 - Having eyes do you not see, and having ears do you not hear? And do you not remember?

        Link.25-27" class="rtBibleRef">Ezekiel 36:25-27 - I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleannesses, and from all your idols I will cleanse you. 26 And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27 And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules.[a]

        Sola Fide directly depends on Sola Gratia. According to Luther, Soli de Gloria was at stake in the synergistic view where man deserves some of the credit or the glory for his salvation. Against the synergistic view of Erasmus Luther believed being Born Again or Above is monergistic. Monergism is the work of God alone, because man is dead in trespasses and sin. It is God and only God that brings man back to life, sending His Spirit to revive, regenerate and resurrect man from the hopeless condition of spiritual death. It may also be helpful to acknowledge that Regeneration/Born Again/Born from Above are not synonymous with Justification. Luther unapologetically taught that man does not have faith in order to be born again, but man is born again from the spirit and word, and as a result has faith. The faith of Jesus Christ is the gift of God that we exercise, produced in us by the Holy Spirit.

        The Lutheran Book of Concord was written after Luther's death, and the monergistic view is affirmed:

        Book of Concord:

        So also when Luther says that with respect to his conversion man is pure passive (purely passive), that is, does nothing whatever towards it, but only suffers what God works in him, his meaning is not that conversion takes place without the preaching and hearing of God's Word; nor is this his meaning, that in conversion no new emotion whatever is awakened in us by the Holy Ghost and no spiritual operation begun; but he means that man of himself, or from his natural powers, cannot do anything or help towards his conversion, and that conversion is not only in part, but altogether an operation, gift, and present, and work of the Holy Ghost alone, who accomplishes and effects it by His power and might, through the Word, in the intellect, will, and heart of man, tamquam in subiecto patiente, that is, while man does or works nothing, but only suffers; not as a figure is cut into stone or a seal impressed into wax, which knows nothing of it, neither perceives and wills this, but in the way which has been recounted and explained a short while ago.
        God bless,
        William
        Comment>

        • #5
          But according to Startcat God forgives those he has chosen all their future sins. So those chosen can comit murder, adultery etc but are guaranteed heaven.

          On the flip side (as I understand Calvanism) if God has not chosen you then no matter what you do, you are hellbound.
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          • #6
            Originally posted by Bede View Post
            On the flip side (as I understand Calvanism) if God has not chosen you then no matter what you do, you are hellbound.
            Strat will have to clarify his own post.

            I reedited my above post Bede. As a Calvinist, I would agree with your statement but reiterate in such a way that if God does not intervene man left up to himself will perish in sin and trespasses.

            I would like to suggest that one should also differentiate between Calvinism and Hyper Calvinism, staying clear from the error of Fatalism.

            Soli de Gloria,
            William
            Comment>

            • #7
              I was out but am back. Bede, to clarify what I said regarding sin and the forgiveness thereof, I do not state or imply that we are given a free license to sin, but that we do sin. In fact, anyone that says they are not a sinner is a liar and the love of the Father is not in them. Even though we do sin, the Lord helps us to repent and sin less and less as we grow closer to Him. Our desire to sin fades away, our hating to sin grows. Still, through it all, as believers, we are forgiven.

              Take the extreme: one is a believer, yet at some point, commits a murder. The believer is forgiven, and as a result of the grace of Christ and grieving the Spirit, is going to respond with great remorse and find it much harder to murder again. The unbeliever after committing murder gradually finds it easier to do as their conscience is seared with a hot iron, burning out the "nerve endings" that would cause the regret for murdering, until they feel almost nothing from doing it. And they are not forgiven unless the Lord saves them as He did with the apostle Paul, for example. He was responsible for the many deaths of Christians and was proud of himself, then after conversion, regret for those actions grew and he sinned much less and less. The examples, such as a conscience being seared with a hot iron are in the Bible, if you want me to post them. Jesus saves us knowing we will still sin, but we are held accountable to Him for loss and reward according to our works. For the unbeliever, they receive different degrees of damnation according to their works. Before a believer is saved, his works are as filthy rags and count for nothing, but after salvation, are as I just described. I hope this helps.

              I know the RCC believes in mortal sins and such, which I do not fully understand, so I will let you explain that and purgatory if you would, please. Also, where they are in the Bible. Note: I do not have the Apocrypha.
              Comment>

              • #8
                Originally posted by Stratcat View Post
                I was out but am back. Bede, to clarify what I said regarding sin and the forgiveness thereof, I do not state or imply that we are given a free license to sin, but that we do sin. In fact, anyone that says they are not a sinner is a liar and the love of the Father is not in them. Even though we do sin, the Lord helps us to repent and sin less and less as we grow closer to Him. Our desire to sin fades away, our hating to sin grows. Still, through it all, as believers, we are forgiven.

                Take the extreme: one is a believer, yet at some point, commits a murder. The believer is forgiven, and as a result of the grace of Christ and grieving the Spirit, is going to respond with great remorse and find it much harder to murder again. The unbeliever after committing murder gradually finds it easier to do as their conscience is seared with a hot iron, burning out the "nerve endings" that would cause the regret for murdering, until they feel almost nothing from doing it. And they are not forgiven unless the Lord saves them as He did with the apostle Paul, for example. He was responsible for the many deaths of Christians and was proud of himself, then after conversion, regret for those actions grew and he sinned much less and less. The examples, such as a conscience being seared with a hot iron are in the Bible, if you want me to post them. Jesus saves us knowing we will still sin, but we are held accountable to Him for loss and reward according to our works. For the unbeliever, they receive different degrees of damnation according to their works. Before a believer is saved, his works are as filthy rags and count for nothing, but after salvation, are as I just described. I hope this helps.

                I know the RCC believes in mortal sins and such, which I do not fully understand, so I will let you explain that and purgatory if you would, please. Also, where they are in the Bible. Note: I do not have the Apocrypha.
                Hi Stratcat,

                I understand what you are saying and agree with you.

                Regarding mortal sin we take what John said:
                “If any one sees his brother committing what is not a mortal sin, he will ask, and God will give him life for those whose sin is not mortal. There is sin which is mortal; I do not say that one is to pray for that. All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin which is not mortal.” (1Jn 5:16-17)

                Deadly, or mortal, sins destroy all grace in the soul and make us unfit for heaven. It breaks the covenant. Paul writes:
                “Now the works of the flesh are plain: fornication, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, anger, selfishness, dissension, party spirit, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and the like. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.” (Gal 5:19-21)

                Venial sins are the rest, which do not totally rupture our relationship with God. We remain in the covenant. However we should not take them lightly and unless repented of, and resisted with God grace, they can provide a slippery slope into mortal sin.

                Purgatory is a big topic and I think would be too much of a derailment of this thread. If you would like to discuss it I will start a new one. Let me know. It’s perfectly possible to argue it without 2Maccabees!
                Comment>

                • #9
                  Yes, a thread on purgatory would be useful to understand where, besides the Apocrypha, in the Bible the RCC sees that there is purgatory. Most RC's I have spoken to do not understand their doctrine very well, and you seem to be the exception, in my experience. If nothing else, perhaps my understanding of the RCC can be made accurate. Thanks. I will have to meditate on the Scripture your refer to regarding sin. This means finding out what else the Scripture says that makes Protestantism so different besides just leaving the leadership of the Pope.
                  Comment>

                  • #10
                    Bede, the OP of "The Heart of Reformed Theology" may help you understand in large part what I understand from the Bible, and believe. Jesus died for all our sins, not just sins up to the point where we are converted. One rule of thumb I think is pretty accurate is that "if the doctrine glorifies God rather than man, it is a likely teaching from God, in the Bible." Therefore, if the doctrine glorifies man's actions, leaving God out of action, the doctrine is most likely false. This is my own little theory and may not necessarily be in the Bible; but then again, it might.
                    Comment>

                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Stratcat View Post
                      One rule of thumb I think is pretty accurate is that "if the doctrine glorifies God rather than man, it is a likely teaching from God, in the Bible." Therefore, if the doctrine glorifies man's actions, leaving God out of action, the doctrine is most likely false. This is my own little theory and may not necessarily be in the Bible; but then again, it might.
                      Glory to God alone is more than a theory Strat, Soli deo Gloria is a pillar of truth. The Protestant Reformation of the 16th century changed Christianity forever. Roused to action by the corruption and abuses they saw in the Roman Catholic church of the time, visionary pastors and leaders like Martin Luther and John Calvin spearheaded a movement that transformed Christianity and eventually led to the emergence of the Protestant denominations that exist today.The Reformers were guided by the conviction that the church of their day had drifted away from the essential, original teachings of Christianity, especially in regard to what it was teaching about salvation—how people can be forgiven of sin through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ and receive eternal life with God. The Reformation sought to re-orient Christianity on the original message of Jesus and the early church.

                      The Five Solas are five Latin phrases (or slogans) that emerged from the Protestant Reformation intended to summarize the Reformers' basic theological principles in contrast to certain teachings of the Roman Catholic Church of the day. "Sola" is Latin meaning "alone" or "only" and the corresponding phrases are:
                      1. Sola Fide, by faith alone.
                      2. Sola Scriptura, by Scripture alone.
                      3. Solus Christus, through Christ alone.
                      4. Sola Gratia, by grace alone.
                      5. Soli Deo Gloria, glory to God alone.

                      Glory to God alone (Soli Deo Gloria)

                      Glory to God alone (Soli Deo Gloria), is one of the Five Solas of the Reformatiom meaning all the glory is due to God alone, since he did all the work not only in the atonement of Christ, but even granting the faith which unites us to Christ and brings us into the salvation provided by his atonement.

                      As the Scripture says,
                      Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God; Whoever speaks, let him speak, as it were, the utterances of God; whoever serves, let him do so as by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father; to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. To Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might, be to our God forever and ever. For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen. (1 Corinthians 10:31; 1 Peter 4:11; Revelation 1:6; 2 Peter 3:1; Ephesians 3:21; Revelation 7:12; Romans 11:36)

                      God bless,
                      William
                      Comment>

                      • #12
                        I agree with the entire post, William. Belief in free will steals glory from God, who by His grace through faith, chose and saved His saints. There is no room for man to boast of his own works. Free will is man's own works. Saving grace is by God's works, hence we shall glorify Him alone. Absolutely. People today are too much into pleasing themselves, living for themselves, glorifying themselves, such that they can't even begin to know God. It takes God's grace to choose whosoever He will and cause us to come unto Him, whereby we shall never be cast out.
                        Comment>

                        • #13

                          “O king, the Most High God gave your father Nebuchadnezzar kingship, greatness, glory, and majesty”. (Dan 5:18)

                          “Now, Master, you may let your servant go
                          in peace, according to your word,
                          for my eyes have seen your salvation,
                          which you prepared in sight of all the peoples,
                          a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
                          and glory for your people Israel.” (Lk 2:29-32)


                          Glory
                          c.1300, "magnificence," from O.Fr. glorie, from L. gloria "great praise or honor," of uncertain origin. Gk. doxa "expectation" (Homer), later "opinion, fame," and ultimately "glory," was used in Biblical writing to translate a Heb. word which had a sense of "brightness, splendor, magnificence, majesty," and this was subsequently translated as L. gloria, which has colored that word's meaning in most European tongues. Wuldor was an O.E. word used in this sense. Glory days was in use by 1980s; glorious is c.1300, from O.Fr. glorieus, from L. gloriosus "full of glory," from gloria. In 14c.-17c. it also could mean "boastful, vainglorious." Glorified in the sense of "transformed into something better" is recorded from 1821. (Online Entymology Dictionary).

                          If glory means great praise of honour, then we can give great praise of honour to those who are not God. God has his own glory, others have different glory. God may not share his glory with others, but that does not mean they do not have their own glory:

                          Your glory, O Israel, lies slain upon your high places! How the mighty have fallen” (2 Sam 1:19)

                          “You [King Amaziah] have indeed defeated Edom, and your heart has lifted you up. Be content with your glory, and stay at home; for why should you provoke trouble so that you fall, you and Judah with you?” (2 kg 14:10)

                          “He has stripped my glory from me, and taken the crown from my head.” (Job 19:9)

                          “what are human beings that you are mindful of them,
                          mortals that you care for them?
                          Yet you have made them a little lower than God,
                          and crowned them with glory and honour.”
                          Psalm 8:4-5
                          Comment>

                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Stratcat View Post
                            I agree with the entire post, William. Belief in free will steals glory from God, who by His grace through faith, chose and saved His saints. There is no room for man to boast of his own works. Free will is man's own works. Saving grace is by God's works, hence we shall glorify Him alone. Absolutely. People today are too much into pleasing themselves, living for themselves, glorifying themselves, such that they can't even begin to know God. It takes God's grace to choose whosoever He will and cause us to come unto Him, whereby we shall never be cast out.
                            Why does free will steal glory from God?
                            Comment>

                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Stratcat View Post
                              Yes, a thread on purgatory would be useful to understand where, besides the Apocrypha, in the Bible the RCC sees that there is purgatory. Most RC's I have spoken to do not understand their doctrine very well, and you seem to be the exception, in my experience. If nothing else, perhaps my understanding of the RCC can be made accurate. Thanks. I will have to meditate on the Scripture your refer to regarding sin. This means finding out what else the Scripture says that makes Protestantism so different besides just leaving the leadership of the Pope.
                              OK, I'll start a thread on Purgatory.

                              I warn you though it is very long

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