full cessationalism is not biblical

Discussion in 'Pneumatology' started by rembrandt, May 14, 2004.

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  1. Scott

    Scott Puritan Board Graduate

    This is a post from the other thread. The reformers are not talking about special providences in the sources cited in the other thread.

    Fred (and others):

    I am making distinction used by Rutherford, Baxter, et al. Below is a quote from Rutherford, in which he divides internal revelation into the four following categories.

    (1) Prophetical revelation;
    (2) Revelation special to the elect only;
    (3) Revelation of some facts peculiar to godly men;
    (4) False and satanical revelation.

    I think the area of disagreement we have is over item 3. Here is a quote from Samuel Rutherford, A Survey of Spiritual Antichrist (London, 1648):


    1. Prophetical revelation is that irradiation of the mind that the Holy Ghost makes on the mind and judgment of the penmen of holy scripture, whether prophets or apostles and that by an immediate inbreathing of the mind and will of God on them, whether in visions, dreams, or any other way, without men, or the ministry or teaching of men, as he did to Isaiah, Jeremiah, Isa. 1:1; Jer. 1:1 or to Paul Gal. 1:1.

    2. There is a special internal revelation, made of things in scripture, applied in particular to the souls of elect believers, by which, having heard and learned of the Father, Jn. 6:4; there is made known and revealed to them, by the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, what is the hope of their calling, and what is the riches of the glory of the inheritance in the saints, Eph. 1:17-19, and that revealed to them, which flesh and blood reveals not, but the Father of Christ, Matt. 16:17. And that which the Father reveals unto babes, and hides from the wise, and prudent, Matt. 11:25-26.

    3. There is a 3rd revelation of some particular men, who have foretold things to come even since the ceasing of the canon of the word, as John Huss, Wycliffe, Luther, have foretold things to come, and they certainly fell out. And in our nation of Scotland, Mr. George Wishart foretold that Cardinal Beaton should not come out alive at the gates of the Castle of St. Andrews, but that he should die a shameful death; and he was hanged over the window that he did look out at, when he saw the man of God burnt. Mr. Knox prophesied of the hanging of the Lord of Grange. Mr. John Davidson uttered prophesies, known to many of the kingdom, diverse holy and mortified preachers in England have done the like.

    4. No Familists, or Antinomians - no David George, nor H. Nicholas, no man ever of that gang, Randel or Wheelwright, or Den, or any other - that ever I heard of, being once engaged in the familistical way, ever did utter any but the fourth sort of lying and false inspirations. Mrs. Hutchison said she should be delivered from the Court of Boston miraculously as Daniel from the lions, which proved false. Becold prophesied of the deliverance of the town of Munster which was delivered to their enemies, and he and his prophet were tortured and hanged. David George prophesied of the raising of himself from the dead, which was never fulfilled.


    Scott
     
  2. Scott

    Scott Puritan Board Graduate

    [quote:55e666f6c1]
    I'm with Fred. There's a line drawn between Cessationism and Non-Cessasionism. Once that line is smeared there's no standard by which to judge if a prompting/sign/message, etc. is from the Lord or from Man. Are the Scriptures sufficient, or aren't they? They are!
    [/quote:55e666f6c1]

    This is not true. That is why the Bible provides standards for identifying whether new revelation is from God or not. If the situation you describe is inevitable, then those passages would be frivolous.

    Scott
     
  3. fredtgreco

    fredtgreco Vanilla Westminsterian Staff Member

    [quote:02cf3aa212][i:02cf3aa212]Originally posted by Scott[/i:02cf3aa212]
    [quote:02cf3aa212]
    unto which nothing at any time is to be added, whether by new revelations of the Spirit
    [/quote:02cf3aa212]

    See the sessional article I mentioned. It is here:

    http://www.ecn.ab.ca/prce/books/prophecy/prophecy.htm

    Didn't we have this exact conversation in the other thread? We are rehashing an issue that has been completely exhausted.

    Scott [/quote:02cf3aa212]

    Scott,

    We're talking about revelation here. Either all revelation has ceased or it hasn't. If it hasn't then Scripture is insufficient. There is no way around this.

    The Sessional article basically takes a long time to say (as is typical of PRCE documents) that someone might have an extraordinary insight into future events. Of course, there can be NO imperative given with respect to that "prediction" for that would be to bind the conscience, and it would be either a moral law or article of faith binding the conscience, which the document expressly prohibits:

    [quote:02cf3aa212]No statement of truth, no moral law, no article of faith, fundamentally or non-fundamentally necessary to salvation, can ordinarily or extraordinarily be added to Scripture or bind the conscience by means of prophetical utterance subsequent to the closing of the canon.[/quote:02cf3aa212]

    So I could claim to have a prediction about judgment coming on America or the Church based on acceptance of abortion, but I can't call the Church or anyone to any action on this, because that would be to bind the conscience. Not very useful - certainly not revelatory.

    I'll stand with Owen, Warfield and Hodge on this:

    [quote:02cf3aa212]1. The inspired Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are a complete rule of faith and practice: they embrace the whole of whatever supernatural revelation God now makes to men, and are abundantly sufficient for all the practical necessities of men or communities.
    This is proved-
    (1) From the design of Scripture. It professes to lead us to God. Whatever is necessary to that end it must teach us. If any supplementary knowledge is necessary, it must refer to it. Incompleteness in such an undertaking would be falsehood. But
    (2) while Christ and his apostles constantly refer to Scripture as an authoritative rule, neither they nor the Scriptures themselves ever refer to any other source of divine revelation whatsoever. They therefore assume all the awful prerogatives of completeness (John 20:31; 2 Tim. 3:15-17). And
    (3), as a matter of fact, the Scriptures do teach a perfect system of doctrine, and all the principles which are necessary for the practical regulation of the lives of individuals, communities, and churches. The more diligent men have been in the study of the Bible, and the more assiduous they have been in carrying out its instructions into practice, the less has it been possible for them to believe that it is incomplete in any element of a perfect rule of all that which man is to believe concerning God, and of all that duty which God requires of man.
    2. Nothing during the present dispensation is to be added to this complete rule of faith, either by new revelations of the Spirit or by traditions of men.
    No new revelations of the Spirit are to be expected now-
    (1) Because he has already given us a complete and all-sufficient rule.
    (2) Because, while the Old Testament foretells the new dispensation, the New Testament does not refer to any further revelation to be expected before the second advent of Christ: they always refer to the "coming" or "appearance" of Christ as the very next supernatural event to be anticipated.
    (3) As a matter of fact, no pretended revelations of the Spirit since the days of the apostles have borne the marks or been accompanied with the "signs" of a supernatural revelation: on the contrary, all that have been made public-as those of Swedenborg and the Mormons-are inconsistent with Scripture truth, directly oppose the authority of Scripture, and teach bad morals; while private revelations have been professed only by vain enthusiasts, and are incapable of verification.
    Traditions of men cannot be allowed to supplement Scripture as a rule of faith, because-
    (1) The Scriptures, while undertaking to lead men to a saving knowledge of God, never once ascribe authority to any such a supplementary rule.
    (2) Christ rebukes the practical observance of it in the Pharisees (Matt. 15:3-6; Mark 7:7,8).
    (3) Tradition cannot supplement Scripture, because, while the latter is definite, complete, and perspicuous, the former is essentially indeterminate, obscure, and fragmentary.
    (4) The only system of ecclesiastical tradition which pretends to rival the Scriptures as a rule of faith is that of the Roman Church; and her traditions are, many of them, demonstrably of modern origin. None can be traced to the apostolic age, much less to an apostolic origin: they are inconsistent with the clear teaching of Scripture, and with the opinions of many of the highest authorities in that Church itself in past ages.
    3. Nevertheless, a personal spiritual illumination by the power of the Holy Ghost is necessary, in every case, for the practical and saving knowledge of the truth embraced in the Scriptures.
    This necessity does not result from any want of either completeness or clearness in the revelation, but from the fact that man in a state of nature is carnal, and unable to discern the things of the Spirit of God. Spiritual illumination differs from inspiration, therefore,
    (1) In that it conveys no new truths to the understanding but simply opens the mind and heart of the subject to the spiritual discernment and appreciation of the truth already objectively presented in the Scriptures; and
    (2) In that it is an element in regeneration common to all the children of God, and not peculiar to prophets or apostles; and hence,
    (3) In that it is private and personal in its use, and not public.
    4. That, while the Scriptures are a complete rule of faith and practice, and while nothing is to be regarded as an article of faith to be believed, or a religious duty obligatory upon the conscience, which is not explicitly or implicitly taught in Scripture, nevertheless they do not descend in practical matters into details, but, laying down general principles, leave men to apply them in the exercise of their natural judgment, in the light of experience, and in adaptation to changing circumstances, as they are guided by the sanctifying influences of the Holy Spirit.[/quote:02cf3aa212]
     
  4. rembrandt

    rembrandt Puritan Board Sophomore

    [quote:2a1be5f048][i:2a1be5f048]Originally posted by joshua[/i:2a1be5f048]
    I'm with Fred. There's a line drawn between Cessationism and Non-Cessasionism. Once that line is smeared there's no standard by which to judge if a prompting/sign/message, etc. is from the Lord or from Man. Are the Scriptures sufficient, or aren't they? They are! [/quote:2a1be5f048]

    I don't think that anything doctrinal or directional needs judging. It is automatically deemed as false. There would be no new revelation added to what we know to be true of God or our lives. This is NOT the kind of revelation that I am talking about. All I am saying is that it could be a possiblility that God would disclose a piece of information to someone (not doctrinal or directional). Why he would want to do that, I don't know. But it was done throughout church history and could be done again.

    Just because information is disclosed, the man may or may not deem it as information given by God. It might produce a conviction in the man or something: as we see throughout history.
     
  5. Scott

    Scott Puritan Board Graduate

    [quote:d2625d003f]
    We're talking about revelation here. Either all revelation has ceased or it hasn't. If it hasn't then Scripture is insufficient. There is no way around this.
    [/quote:d2625d003f]

    That is a non sequitur and your conclusion is mistaken.

    Also, let's clarify some things that were mentioned in the other therad:

    The canon is closed. Not all revelation goes into the canon.

    Jesus is the final Word and the revelation of gospel truths has ceased. That is different from "Cardinal X will die by Y" or "Go to Ireland and bring the gospel to the pagans" (ala St. Patrick).

    RC Sproul senior claims a latter revelation of that sort as what spurred him into ministry.

    Scott
     
  6. Scott

    Scott Puritan Board Graduate

    Fred: Do you agree with Rutherford on category 3?

    Scott

    [Edited on 5-14-2004 by Scott]
     
  7. Me Died Blue

    Me Died Blue Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    [quote:1cc6947e8c][i:1cc6947e8c]Originally posted by joshua[/i:1cc6947e8c]
    I'm with Fred. There's a line drawn between Cessationism and Non-Cessasionism. Once that line is smeared there's no standard by which to judge if a prompting/sign/message, etc. is from the Lord or from Man. Are the Scriptures sufficient, or aren't they? They are! [/quote:1cc6947e8c]

    Amen and amen! It may [i:1cc6947e8c]seem[/i:1cc6947e8c] like you can get around the "all or nothing" principle, but any mindset that supposedly "gets around" it is simply lacking in consistence, either on definitions, logical inferences, or both. It is [i:1cc6947e8c]exactly[/i:1cc6947e8c] the same type of absolute as the "Lord, liar or lunatic" nature of Christ - non-Christians may think that they can view Jesus as a good teacher without accepting His claim of divinity, but they are simply confusing the facts. Any attempt to deny historic cessationism without compromising the sufficiency of Scripture opens up an analogous can of worms.

    I would advise those of you who have a problem with Reformed Christendom's historical cessationist doctrine to read O. Palmer Robertson's [i:1cc6947e8c]The Final Word[/i:1cc6947e8c]. It cleared up for me the very definitions and inferences that are being juggled in this thread when I was trying to make sense of them. Sometimes a good book can be worth a thousand conversations.

    In Christ,

    Chris
     
  8. fredtgreco

    fredtgreco Vanilla Westminsterian Staff Member

    [quote:44d652dfbe][i:44d652dfbe]Originally posted by Scott[/i:44d652dfbe]
    Fred: Do you agree with Rutherford on category 3?

    Scott

    [Edited on 5-14-2004 by Scott] [/quote:44d652dfbe]

    Scott,

    I'd have to say that I am agnostic. But the main point is that even if such "revelation" existed, it would not be binding on anyone, would serve no purpose of faith and life, and would basically be a mere curiousity. At best, it would serve (as it seems to have historically) as a confirmation that the speaker was "on the side of God."

    Honestly, it is quite purposeless; and I am far more concerned that someone (as Grudem has) would take this inch and make it a mile into non-authoritative, non-perfect post canon prophecy than that a man would get the glory for being right about something beforehand.

    If you want to say that the Confession allows someone to make a prediction that happens to come true, and account that to God, go ahead. But remember that you cannot call anyone to ANY action based on that prediction (that would be a binding of the conscience), and that the "prophet" has to say beforehand (not afterwards) that it was from God, and if he is wrong, we kill him (cf. Deut 13) .
     
  9. C. Matthew McMahon

    C. Matthew McMahon Christian Preacher

    The WCF does not teach non-cessationism, and the minutes of the Assembly (as far as I have studied them) do not allow for non-cessationism.
     
  10. rembrandt

    rembrandt Puritan Board Sophomore

    [quote:6a960b6483]I'd have to say that I am agnostic. But the main point is that even if such "revelation" existed, it would not be binding on anyone, would serve no purpose of faith and life, and would basically be a mere curiousity. At best, it would serve (as it seems to have historically) as a confirmation that the speaker was "on the side of God."

    Honestly, it is quite purposeless; and I am far more concerned that someone (as Grudem has) would take this inch and make it a mile into non-authoritative, non-perfect post canon prophecy than that a man would get the glory for being right about something beforehand.

    If you want to say that the Confession allows someone to make a prediction that happens to come true, and account that to God, go ahead. But remember that you cannot call anyone to ANY action based on that prediction (that would be a binding of the conscience), and that the "prophet" has to say beforehand (not afterwards) that it was from God, and if he is wrong, we kill him (cf. Deut 13).[/quote:6a960b6483]

    I actually agree.
     
  11. rembrandt

    rembrandt Puritan Board Sophomore

    [quote:86613f3df6]Ok, Paul. You said, "I don't think anything doctrinal or directional needs judging". Then what would the purpose of such be? Is this just an attempt to make room for further "revelatory gifts" beyond the Scriptures?[/quote:86613f3df6]

    Hehe... I said that don't need judging because they are AUTOMATICALLY FALSE!! Read the rest of what I wrote...
     
  12. Me Died Blue

    Me Died Blue Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    I must say that I'm actually quite surprised as to the large amount of people here who aren't cessationists. I honestly don't mean to downplay anyone by saying that, but I just would have expected most of the people here to be more conservative on the issue in general. It's just an observation I made that somewhat surprised me.

    In Christ,

    Chris
     
  13. rembrandt

    rembrandt Puritan Board Sophomore

    [quote:0c94f34f6c]Paul, I read all of what you typed, Sir. But it's as if you're affirming non-cessationism so that you don't have to defend cessationism. I'm simply asking, what's the purpose of a non-doctrinal, non-directional "revelation"?[/quote:0c94f34f6c]

    I am affirming [partial] cessationalism (let me explain)! All new doctrinal or directional prophesy as is defined in 1 Cor. 2-14, is FALSE! There is no need to judge it, except to automatically judge it as false.

    As to the purpose of non-doctrinal, non-directional revelation, I do not know. I don't see any purpose for it honestly. But if God wants to implant thoughts in minds, he can do it, if he sees it fit to do so. I don't know why Monica received revelations (in some sense of the word- but not necessarily as Paul describes), I don't know why the Reformers did. But they did. God can implant thoughts in minds to do whatever he wants.

    [quote:0c94f34f6c]I must say that I'm actually quite surprised as to the large amount of people here who aren't cessationists. I honestly don't mean to downplay anyone by saying that, but I just would have expected most of the people here to be more conservative on the issue in general. It's just an observation I made that somewhat surprised me.

    In Christ,

    Chris[/quote:0c94f34f6c]

    Um, I am a cessationalist. I just don't adhere to the current idea of cessationalism. I believe that I can easily say that I am definitely (at least) a partial-cessationalist. I mean, I say that all the prophetic gifts have ceased! I only allow for traces of it, as did all the Reformers.

    Also, I havn't seen anything in reformational creeds regarding this that I would disagree with.
     
  14. rembrandt

    rembrandt Puritan Board Sophomore

    [quote:732752dbde]I mean, I say that all the prophetic gifts have ceased! I only allow for traces of it[/quote:732752dbde]

    Just in case someone says, "if it has ceased, how could there be traces?", let me answer. It has "ceased" as we know it in the NT, therefore NT prophesy has ceased. A word that describes my position better, is that it has "virtually diminshed." There can be traces of it. But just because there are traces, it does not follow that this is still the gift itself (that Paul described).
     
  15. Wannabee

    Wannabee Obi Wan Kenobi

    [quote:f9cfda111d]But Monica said that she knows the difference between dreams that are of her spirit and those that are of the Holy Spirit. But, myself, I am not saying that I would know how to decipher this.[/quote:f9cfda111d]I know this was posted a ways back, but this is a scary hermeneutical approach. The reason I bring this up is because there have been several references by a few here that experience is a viable method of interpretation. This approach is precisely what has lead to the charismatic, seeker sensitive and other such movements. It will eventually lead to a "the ends justifies the means" mentality.
    Experience CANNOT dictate doctrine. All experience must be weighed in the light of Scripture. If our perception of our experience does not line up with Scripture, then our conclusion regarding this experience must be wrong.
    Furthermore, to claim the prefessed experience of someone so far removed as a sound example of our doctrinal beliefs is dangerous, and irresponsible. We will end up with a system based on a house of cards built upon plausibilities rather than a solid doctrine based on the unshakable foundation of Scriptural truth.
     
  16. rembrandt

    rembrandt Puritan Board Sophomore

    [quote:781a0d5b38][i:781a0d5b38]Originally posted by Wannabee[/i:781a0d5b38]
    [quote:781a0d5b38]But Monica said that she knows the difference between dreams that are of her spirit and those that are of the Holy Spirit. But, myself, I am not saying that I would know how to decipher this.[/quote:781a0d5b38]I know this was posted a ways back, but this is a scary hermeneutical approach. The reason I bring this up is because there have been several references by a few here that experience is a viable method of interpretation. This approach is precisely what has lead to the charismatic, seeker sensitive and other such movements. It will eventually lead to a "the ends justifies the means" mentality.
    Experience CANNOT dictate doctrine. All experience must be weighed in the light of Scripture. If our perception of our experience does not line up with Scripture, then our conclusion regarding this experience must be wrong.
    Furthermore, to claim the prefessed experience of someone so far removed as a sound example of our doctrinal beliefs is dangerous, and irresponsible. We will end up with a system based on a house of cards built upon plausibilities rather than a solid doctrine based on the unshakable foundation of Scriptural truth. [/quote:781a0d5b38]

    Yes. I agree with what you said. I never said Monica was right. I was only trying to show that prophesy (in some sense of the word) was occuring far later in church history than most cessationalist expect.

    Let me ask this, do you think Monica and Augustine were wrong in that God spoke (in some way) to her on various occasions?
     
  17. Wannabee

    Wannabee Obi Wan Kenobi

    [quote:a33d25a990]Let me ask this, do you think Monica and Augustine were wrong in that God spoke (in some way) to her on various occasions? [/quote:a33d25a990]Yes! That's exactly what I think. I can't prove it. However, there is no Scriptural warrant for this claim. It is mystical and unverifiable.

    Some considerations:
    What were the nature of these "revelations?"
    Do we have a complete list of all of them?
    Did they all come true?
    If not, then what was the source? (This last one could get to the root of the issue rather quickly, if we could know)
    I would caution anyone who thought they heard God speak to be very concerned about what they thought. Did God speak? Was it of demonic or satanic origin?

    Once we stray from what we can know we delve into speculation and again, plausibilities. We can wonder, but to make any claims based on these unverifieable assertions will quickly lead to error. It's just too far removed from Scripture.

    I can also share that I have some limited experience in this area. I had an aunt that warned our family, on more than one occassion, that something was going to happen and it did. Nothing traumatic, but she was accurate. However, the source of this knowledge is unverifiable. I won't touch it.

    Several years ago, while we were sitting in church, my wife was so certain that she heard a voice tell her that I was going to be a preacher that she wept and wrote the words plus the date in her Bible. She didn't tell me until quite a while after I told her that I wanted to go into the ministry. She showed me where she had written it.

    This is indeed strange. I can't explain it. However, I will not claim that my wife is a prophetess (although she might sometimes :bs2: ... just kidding, we don't need to go there).

    What does Scripture say about these things? Nothing that I know of, so neither will I. I need to concentrate on what I can know, not on what I think or can philosophically justify.

    Since God knows everything, and is all powerfull, we can be certain that all that we need to know in our daily lives is available to us in His written Word.

    T.U.L.I.P.
    Christ, and Him crucified, risen and exhalted at the Father's right hand, as our Savior and Mediator.
     
  18. rembrandt

    rembrandt Puritan Board Sophomore

    Once again, I agree with everything that was said. I will say again, I do not believe that the prophesy that Paul spoke of is still active.

    Wannabe, for you to not say that your wife actually recieved a prophesy is fine. In fact, if someone did say that, I would be worried. Just because she said something and it came to pass, doesn't make it a prophesy (as you said). And we don't have any good source to verify that God spoke to her in any way of the such.

    All I am saying is that COMPLETE cessationalism (as is adhered to today by most) is not biblical. Pretty much, I am arguing from silence. I say, well, something of the nature COULD happen, but we would have no way of knowing for sure.

    Rembrandt
     
  19. Wannabee

    Wannabee Obi Wan Kenobi

    What you APPEAR to be saying is accurate. We have no evidence that the office of the prophet has ceased, except for the fact that there haven't been any for almost 2000 years.

    We do have miracles. Although most of what modern day Christians claim as miracles are not, but more like providential appointments or circumstances. If it truly is a miracle it will exhalt and glorify God.[quote:d4c5f5fe88]All I am saying is that COMPLETE cessationalism (as is adhered to today by most) is not biblical. Pretty much, I am arguing from silence. I say, well, something of the nature COULD happen, but we would have no way of knowing for sure. [/quote:d4c5f5fe88]What you say has some merit. Where do you go with it though?

    Another consideration. Every supposedly credible account of the manifestation of the "sign gifts" that I have heard has been through at least a second hand source, and usually through a third, fourth, fifth, etc.

    It is interesting to read your initial post. You seem to have refined your thinking.
     
  20. Wannabee

    Wannabee Obi Wan Kenobi

    Thanks Josh,:scholar:

    I miss being here. It's difficult making time lately.

    This was fun though,

    Good job

    :thumbup::thumbup::thumbup: :banana::banana:
     
  21. rembrandt

    rembrandt Puritan Board Sophomore

    [quote:edd5ea0b8d]Is COMPLETE noncessationalism biblical?[/quote:edd5ea0b8d]

    Any noncessationalism is FALSE. I am a cessationalist, just not according to modern views of cessationalism.

    I said this in my first post:
    [quote:edd5ea0b8d]By weight of things as the such, I have denounced the cessational argument that prophesy stopped completely after the close of canon.[/quote:edd5ea0b8d]

    It did not stop completely after the close of canon. But saying this does not mean that I am not a cessationalist. I am a cessationalist because I say that it has "virtually diminished" and "practically ceased." Any use of it as in the apostolic period is FALSE. But it does not follow that it has STOPPED COMPLETELY. Elements could still remain, but this would carry no weight in anybodies lives, since we are no longer bound to prophetic words.

    If someone says, "If it is occuring at all, then it is binding", I would say, [b:edd5ea0b8d]that it does not follow.[/b:edd5ea0b8d] (hear me out on this.) If we KNOW FOR A FACT that it IS occuring then it would be binding. But we don't KNOW that it is occuring, and we have good historical weight that it diminished throughout history. At the same time, we don't KNOW that it [providential predictive prophesy] is not occuring (and here I'm talking about non-direction, non-doctrinal prophesy). If we do not KNOW either, then we can conclude that God has not made it crystal clear that it ["PPP"]has stopped (and remember, I believe the "gifts" have ceased). And we have concluded Biblically that it is of no real use (to our knowledge).

    So, we are left with saying that it has diminshed (and I argue historically) and is not of real use for the Christian, but it COULD happen. Don't ask me why it could happen, because I don't know.

    [quote:edd5ea0b8d]What you say has some merit. Where do you go with it though?[/quote:edd5ea0b8d]

    I don't know. Honestly, I don't think my arguement is useful for the Christian life AT ALL. All I was attempting to do is show that full cessationalism is not justified by the Bible or history.

    I don't think this leaves us in middle ground though. I am a cessationalist (to seek after these gifts is heresy). There is no use for new prophesy that I know of. But it COULD happen.

    [quote:edd5ea0b8d]It is interesting to read your initial post. You seem to have refined your thinking.[/quote:edd5ea0b8d]

    How so? Does my first couple paragraphs answer that?

    Rembrandt
     
  22. rembrandt

    rembrandt Puritan Board Sophomore

    I believe that it [my view] is the more accurate historical idea of cessationalism. I may not be a cessationalist by modern standards, though they would admit that I am in some way a "partial-cessationalist" (I think).

    Rembrandt
     
  23. rembrandt

    rembrandt Puritan Board Sophomore

    So, I adhere to Orthodoxy on the subject. It is just that alot of contemporary cessationalists say MORE than historical Orthodoxy.
     
  24. Scott

    Scott Puritan Board Graduate

    [quote:1694d213f1]
    Scott, for my ignorant sake, can you provide me the passages that have these standards for "identifying whether new revelation is from God or not"?
    [/quote:1694d213f1]

    Here is one, from Deut. 13:

    [quote:1694d213f1]
    You may say to yourselves, "How can we know when a message has not been spoken by the LORD ?" 22 If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the LORD does not take place or come true, that is a message the LORD has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him.
    [/quote:1694d213f1]
     
  25. Scott

    Scott Puritan Board Graduate

    [quote:b9ed46d1ff]
    I must say that I'm actually quite surprised as to the large amount of people here who aren't cessationists. I honestly don't mean to downplay anyone by saying that, but I just would have expected most of the people here to be more conservative on the issue in general. It's just an observation I made that somewhat surprised me.
    [/quote:b9ed46d1ff]

    Read church history extensively (especially the patristics) and you will find it almost impossible to remain a complete cessastionist, unless you find that all the great men of Church history prior to the Reformation were liars and lacked credibility. Anyway, Reformed should accept post-apostolic testimony of the Church about miracles. That great Scottish reformer George Gillespie was open to accounts of miracles in the Church. Consider this from George Gillespie, Miscellany Questions, Works, Vol. 2, Chapter 5, section 1, point 3, p. 28:

    [quote:b9ed46d1ff]
    This question appears to be very perplexed and thorny, yet I am led upon it both by the controversies of the times, concerning the necessity of mission and ordination unto all ministers of holy things, and likewise by occasion of that which is maintained by some men of learning, that there are still, or may be, evangelists in the church. Calvin holds, indeed, that in that age of his, God raised up evangelists to rescue the church from Popery, (Institutes, lib. 4, cap. 3, sec. 4).

    ... concerning Prophets, I have before showed out of Justin Martyr (Dial. cum Tryph. Jud.) that, in his days, their were still some in the church who had an extraordinary gift of prophecy, and such there have been also in other places, and at other times; of which there might be diverse instances given.

    ... I say, again, the work of prophets and evangelists was extraordinary; for the distinguishing or characteristic property of a prophet, i.e., the utmost he could do which the ordinary officers could not do, nor any other but an apostle, is the opening of great secrets, or foreshowing things to come, by the special and extraordinary inspiration of the Holy Ghost. Their very names intimate so much, for propheetees and pheeteuo come from propheemi, I foretell.
    [/quote:b9ed46d1ff]

    Note the reference to Justin. If you want to know what was happening in Justin's day, read Justin.

    Scott
     
  26. Scott

    Scott Puritan Board Graduate

    [quote:e22ea1e724]
    I'm with Fred. There's a line drawn between Cessationism and Non-Cessasionism. Once that line is smeared there's no standard by which to judge if a prompting/sign/message, etc. is from the Lord or from Man. Are the Scriptures sufficient, or aren't they? They are!
    [/quote:e22ea1e724]

    If true (and I don't think it is), this must have placed the saints of the Old Testament in quite a predicament. Were the people of the Old Testament (which would be prior to the completion of the canon, which includes in the New Testament) completely at the mercy of false prophets b/c the canon had not been closed? Was the Word of God completely worthless because the canon had not been closed? I think not. Indeed, that is why God expressly provides standards for identifying fake prophets.

    That is also why Puritans like Richard Baxter (in his Christian Directory) use Deut. 13 and related standards to tell people how to identify false prophets. He also acknowledges that God still does reveal things to people today.

    Of course, Puritan views of continuing revelation (like that of the great Baxter) differed quite a bit from Wayne Grudem or the Charismatics of today.

    If you have access to his Christian Directory, I can get you the cites to the relevant parts.

    Scott
     
  27. Scott

    Scott Puritan Board Graduate

    [quote:44942b82e5]
    I adhere to Orthodoxy on the subject.
    [/quote:44942b82e5]

    What do you mean? By capitalizing "Orthodoxy," I take it you mean Eastern Orthodoxy. What is that position?

    Thanks
     
  28. rembrandt

    rembrandt Puritan Board Sophomore

    [quote:99fc32e3c0][i:99fc32e3c0]Originally posted by Scott[/i:99fc32e3c0]
    [quote:99fc32e3c0]
    I adhere to Orthodoxy on the subject.
    [/quote:99fc32e3c0]

    What do you mean? By capitalizing "Orthodoxy," I take it you mean Eastern Orthodoxy. What is that position?

    Thanks [/quote:99fc32e3c0]

    Oh, no. I meant [i:99fc32e3c0]o[/i:99fc32e3c0]rthodoxy. I thought it could be used with a big "O" when referring to THE position of the Universal Church.

    Rembrandt

    [Edited on 5-17-2004 by rembrandt]
     
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