The Biblical Offer of the Gospel

Status
Not open for further replies.

AV1611

Puritan Board Senior
Here is Turretin on the Offer as well as the will of God, election and reprobation.

"He, who by calling men shows that he wills their salvation and yet does not will it, acts deceitfully, if it is understood of the same will (i.e., if he shows that he wills that by the will of decree and yet does not will it; or by the will of precept and yet does not will it). But if it refers to diverse wills, the reasoning does not equally hold good. For example, if he shows that he wills a thing by the will of precept and yet does not will it by the will of decree, there is no simulation or hypocrisy here (as in prescribing the law to men, he shows that he wills they should fulfill it as to approbation and command, but not immediately as to decree). Now in calling God indeed shows that he wills the salvation of the called by the will of precept and good pleasure (euarestias), but not by the will of decree. For calling shows what God wills man should do, but not what he himself had decreed to do. It teaches what is pleasing and acceptable to God and in accordance with his own nature (namely, that the called should come to him); but not what he himself has determined to do concerning man. It signifies what God is prepared to give believers and penitents, but not what he has actually decreed to give to this or that person.

XVI. It is one thing to will reprobates to come (i.e., to command them to come and to desire it); another to will they should not come (i.e., to nill the giving them the power to come). God can in calling them will the former and yet not the latter without any contrariety because the former respects only the will of precept, while the latter respects the will of decree. Although these are diverse (because they propose diverse objects to themselves, the former the commanding of duty, but the latter the execution of the thing itself), still they are not opposite and contrary, but are in the highest degree consistent with each other in various respects. He does not seriously call who does not will the called to come (i.e., who does not command nor is pleased with his coming). But not he who does not will him to come whither he calls (i.e., did not intend and decree to come). For a serious call does not require that there should be an intention and purpose of drawing him, but only that there should be a constant will of commanding duty and bestowing the blessing upon him who performs it (which God most seriously wills). But if he seriously makes known what he enjoins upon the man and what is the way of salvation and what is agreeable to himself, God does not forthwith make known what he himself intended and decreed to do. Nor, if among men, a prince or a legislator commands nothing which he does not will (i.e., does not intend should also be done by his subjects because he has not the power of effecting this in them), does it follow that such is the case with God, upon whom alone it depends not only to command but also to effect this in man. But if such a legislator could be granted among men, he would rightly be said to will that which he approves and commands, although he does not intend to effect it.

XXI. The invitation to the wedding proposed in the parable (Mt. 22:1-14) teaches that the king wills (i.e., commands and desires) the invited to come and that this is their duty; but not that the king intends or has decreed that they should really come. Otherwise he would have given them the ability to come and would have turned their hearts. Since he did not do this, it is the surest sign that he did not will they should come in this way. When it is said “all things are ready” (Luke 14:17), it is not straightway intimated an intention of God to give salvation to them, but only the sufficiency of Christ’s sacrifice. For he was prepared by God and offered on the cross as a victim of infinite merit to expiate the sins of men and to acquire salvation for all clothed in the wedding garment and flying to him (i.e., to the truly believing and repenting) that no place for doubting about the truth and perfection of his satisfaction might remain.”

Turretin is smack on!
Indeed he is but I do not see Turretin teaching the Free Offer in these extracts.
 

BertMulder

Puritan Board Junior
Hello Patrick,

I am planning on critiquing Hoeksema on the Covenant (I'm reading through his Reformed Dogmatics right now), as well as Hanko's treatment of the Marrow Controversy. I would imagine some of this will be ready in the next few months on my blog.
You are bang on when you say that the MM used the language of Calvin. The book(which is heavily criticized by the PRC) is a monument to Biblical Calvinism.

Blessings!
Self laudatory eh?

Look forward to what you have to say.

Perhaps you should give first priority to your defense of your statements against Prof. Hanko's work.

As I still believe you owe us, on this forum, an explanation of your comments on Prof. Hanko's work on the History of the offer. And if that is not forthcoming very soon, it is my opinion that you should withdraw your comments until some future date when you can put your money where your mouth is. That would be the Biblical, Christian way.
 

AV1611

Puritan Board Senior

JOwen

Puritan Board Junior
Self laudatory eh?

Look forward to what you have to say.

Perhaps you should give first priority to your defense of your statements against Prof. Hanko's work.

As I still believe you owe us, on this forum, an explanation of your comments on Prof. Hanko's work on the History of the offer. And if that is not forthcoming very soon, it is my opinion that you should withdraw your comments until some future date when you can put your money where your mouth is. That would be the Biblical, Christian way.

Self praise? I do not understand where I was praising myself Bert. Perhaps you could enlighten me? Perhaps you have a chip over the Calvin debate, I don't know.

Secondly, I don't owe you anything brother. If I say that a critique is forthcoming, be patient and look for it in the future. You have no right to dictate the timing. And it was not a critique of Hanko's History of the Offer, but his portion on the Marrow Men within that work.
 

BertMulder

Puritan Board Junior
Secondly, I don't owe you anything brother. If I say that a critique is forthcoming, be patient and look for it in the future. You have no right to dictate the timing. And it was not a critique of Hanko's History of the Offer, but his portion on the Marrow Men within that work.

Pastor Lewis, you owe Prof. Hanko and this forum an apology for your sin of slander, which is a sin against the 9th commandment, for your unsubstantiated allegations.
 

Puritan Sailor

Puritan Board Doctor
And you need to substantiate your claim of heresy against Erskine, Mr. Mulder. Preferably, I'd like you to evaluate Erskine's statment in light of his whole theology rather than just bits taken out of context.
 

JOwen

Puritan Board Junior
Pastor Lewis, you owe Prof. Hanko and this forum an apology for your sin of slander, which is a sin against the 9th commandment, for your unsubstantiated allegations.
Well here is just a sample to show Hanko's sloppy scholarship.

"There were many in the church that were dissatisfied with this condemnation of the Marrow of Modern Divinity. Twelve such men, later called "The Marrow Men," protested this action of the Assembly. These twelve included, among others, such well-known theologians as Thomas Boston, James Hog, Traill, Ralph and Ebenezer Erskine."​

Let alone the fact that he could not even spell Hogg correctly, Robert Traill was not a Marrow Man nor was he a member of the Scottish Assembly at that time. Robert Traill, while a great influence on the MM died 17 years before the Marrow Controversy ever came about. The 12 that are spoken about are "James Hogg, James Bathgate, Thomas Boston, John Williamson, John Bonnar, Gabriel Wilson, Ebeneizer Eerskine, Ralph Erskine, James Wardlaw, James Kid, Henry Davidson, James Hunter (The Story of the Scottish Church, 458)."

This is the kind of sloppy scholarship I was talking about Bert. He can't even get his facts correct. This is not to mention the theological error permeated throughout that chapter.
Did I say "Hanko butchered the Marrow Controversy and displayed a great lack of knowledge on the subject of the Free Offer in that piece"?
Yep. More to come in time...
 

BertMulder

Puritan Board Junior
And you need to substantiate your claim of heresy against Erskine, Mr. Mulder. Preferably, I'd like you to evaluate Erskine's statment in light of his whole theology rather than just bits taken out of context.
Believe the sermon I quoted (and linked in its entirity) was by Ebenezer Erskine, who was suspended by the general assembly, the charge being, I believe, heresy. They knew a lot more of his doctrine than me. So my charge is substantiated. I was just stating a historical fact, as much as you might disagree with the decision of the assembly.

Excerpt from wikipedia:
Some time before this, he, along with some other ministers, had been rebuked and admonished by the general assembly, for defending the doctrines contained in the Marrow of Modern Divinity (Thomas Boston). A sermon which he preached on lay patronage before the synod of Perth in 1733 furnished new accusations, and he was compelled to defend himself from rebuke by appealing to the general assembly. Here, however, the sentence of the synod was confirmed, and after many fruitless attempts to obtain a hearing, he, along with William Wilson of Perth, Alexander Moncrieff of Abernethy and James Fisher of Kinclaven, was suspended from the ministry by the commission in November of that year.
 

JOwen

Puritan Board Junior
Believe the sermon I quoted (and linked in its entirity) was by Ebenezer Erskine, who was suspended by the general assembly, the charge being, I believe, heresy. They knew a lot more of his doctrine than me. So my charge is substantiated. I was just stating a historical fact, as much as you might disagree with the decision of the assembly.

Excerpt from wikipedia:
This is amusing. I guess we could say the same thing about Herman Hoeksema.


Excerpt from Wikipedia:

" In 1924 he refused to accept the three points of common grace, which became official church dogma of the CRC. The result of this controversy was that he and some other ministers with their congregations were put out of the Christian Reformed Church."

Seems Erskine has a friend ;)
 

BertMulder

Puritan Board Junior
Excerpt from Wikipedia:

" In 1924 he refused to accept the three points of common grace, which became official church dogma of the CRC. The result of this controversy was that he and some other ministers with their congregations were put out of the Christian Reformed Church."

Seems Erskine has a friend ;)

And we are all laughing. We will let history, and the current state of affairs in the Christian Reformed Church judge who was on the right side of that issue. The same Christian Reformed Church that recently decided that the Popish mass is not an accursed idolatry.
 

JOwen

Puritan Board Junior
And we are all laughing. We will let history, and the current state of affairs in the Christian Reformed Church judge who was on the right side of that issue. The same Christian Reformed Church that recently decided that the Popish mass is not an accursed idolatry.
Of course the same could be said for the Church of Scotland which Erskine seceded from who now is one of the most liberal denominations on earth. The Secession line however remains faithful to the WCF in denominations like the Free Church Continuing, ans Free Presbyterian Church of Scotland. History has spoken for the Marrow men as well.

Anyway, Bert, what do you say about the Hanko quote I put up? Is that not a good start in defending my name in the face of your charge?

Blessings!
 

JOwen

Puritan Board Junior
It does not touch the substance of his pamphlet, as you well know.
What do you mean? My contention was he misrepresented the history of the Marrow Controversy in sum and substance in that article. Then you decry me a violator of the ninth commandment and subsequently brush of Hanko's historical foibles as inconsequential!? Is that how you argue for the truth Bert?

In Reformed courts, when a Christian brings charges against a brother (say the 9th commandment) who is subsequently vindicated of said charges the accuser is lovingly rebuked for his error.
 

Puritan Sailor

Puritan Board Doctor
We could also add that he only quotes the Marrow twice (that I can see), and ignores Boston's notes on those two passages which explain them, quite extensive notes at that. He quotes alot from people who talk about the Marrow, but not the Marrow itself. If you're going to critique Marrow theology, you have to critique the Marrow of Modern Divinity, not people's opinon of the Marrow.
 

BertMulder

Puritan Board Junior
Fisher wrote, "God the father, as he is in his Son, Jesus Christ, moved with nothing but his free love to mankind lost, hath made a deed of gift and grant unto them all ... And hence it was, that Jesus Christ said unto his disciples, Mark xvi.15, 'Go and preach the gospel to every creature under heaven:' that is, Go and tell every man without exception, that here is good news for him; Christ is dead for him; and if he will take him, and accept of his righteousness, he shall save him." Boston's notes state, "... the deed of gift or grant is to every man. This necessarily supposeth Christ crucified to be the ordinance of God for salvation, to which lost mankind is allowed access. ... Therefore he says not, 'Tell every man Christ died for him;' but, Tell every man 'Christ is dead for him;' that is, for him to come to, and believe on; a Saviour is provided for him; there is a crucified Christ for him, the ordinance of heaven for salvation for lost man, in the use-making of which he may be saved."

So the Marrowmen are not hypothetical universalists?
 

JOwen

Puritan Board Junior
Fisher wrote, "God the father, as he is in his Son, Jesus Christ, moved with nothing but his free love to mankind lost, hath made a deed of gift and grant unto them all ... And hence it was, that Jesus Christ said unto his disciples, Mark xvi.15, 'Go and preach the gospel to every creature under heaven:' that is, Go and tell every man without exception, that here is good news for him; Christ is dead for him; and if he will take him, and accept of his righteousness, he shall save him." Boston's notes state, "... the deed of gift or grant is to every man. This necessarily supposeth Christ crucified to be the ordinance of God for salvation, to which lost mankind is allowed access. ... Therefore he says not, 'Tell every man Christ died for him;' but, Tell every man 'Christ is dead for him;' that is, for him to come to, and believe on; a Saviour is provided for him; there is a crucified Christ for him, the ordinance of heaven for salvation for lost man, in the use-making of which he may be saved."

So the Marrowmen are not hypothetical universalists?
No more than Calvin. Bert you still do not see that there is a general love and a special love in God. "Christ is dead for you" does not mean "Christ died for you". If you or Hanko would read Boston's note you would see that. "Christ is dead for you", although not the best way of formulating it, means that there is an atoning Saviour for lost sinners (as sinners), any kind of sinner, of any sinful persuasion.

Ponder for a moment Bert the words of Calvin on the two loves in God.

Mark 10:21 ~Jesus beholding him, loved him.~

The inference which the Papists draw from this, that works morally good — that is, works which are not performed by the impulse of the Spirit, but go before regeneration — have the merit of congruity, is an excessively childish contrivance. For if merit be alleged to be the consequence of the love of God, we must then say that frogs and fleas have merit, because all the creatures of God, without exception, are the objects of his love. To distinguish the degrees of love is, therefore, a matter of importance. As to the present passage, it may be enough to state briefly, that God embraces in fatherly love none but his children, whom he has regenerated with the Spirit of adoption, and that it is in consequence of this love that they are accepted at his tribunal. In this sense, to be loved by God, and to be justified in his sight, are synonymous terms.

But God is sometimes said to love those whom he does not approve or justify; for, since the preservation of the human race is agreeable to Him — which consists in justice, uprightness, moderation, prudence, fidelity, and temperance — he is said to love the political virtues; not that they are meritorious of salvation or of grace, but that they have reference to an end of which he approves. In this sense, under various points of view, God loved Aristides and Fabricius, and also hated them; for, in so far as he had bestowed on them outward righteousness, and that for the general advantage, he loved his own work in them; but as their heart was impure, the outward semblance of righteousness was of no avail for obtaining righteousness. For we know that by faith alone hearts are purified, and that the Spirit of uprightness is given to the members of Christ alone. Thus the question is answered, How was it possible that Christ should love a man who was proud and a hypocrite, while nothing is more hateful to God than these two vices? For it is not inconsistent, that the good seed, which God has implanted in some natures, shall be loved by Him, and yet that He should reject their persons and works on account of corruption (Calvin's Commentary on the harmony of the Gospel. Vol. 2. p.297).


posted by Pastor Lewis @ 8:42 AM​

I see here in Calvin a discriminating love that is not salvific for the reprobate. It is a lesser love than the love for the elect, and would seem to terminate upon the temporal object of wrath. Calvin indicates that this is not an ardent and eternal love for those who are not elect, but a temporal condescending love found in His own (albeit marred) image in them. It is a love nonetheless.

Bert, what will you do with Calvin here?
 

BertMulder

Puritan Board Junior
Then how can you say that the Word is a two edged sword?

A savour of life to life and a savor of death to dead?
 

JOwen

Puritan Board Junior
Then how can you say that the Word is a two edged sword?

A savour of life to life and a savor of death to dead?
It is a two edged sword and a savor of death unto death. We are not talking about the salvific activity of the Word of God when we are talking about the general love of God. That belongs to His special revelation and the personal operation of the Holy Spirit. The general love of God for his creation does not impinge on His eternal and electing love or His justified eternal damnation.
 

BertMulder

Puritan Board Junior
now you are mixing apples and oranges.

First of all I excerpted Fisher's statement that "God the father, as he is in his Son, Jesus Christ, moved with nothing but his free love to mankind lost, hath made a deed of gift and grant unto them all ... And hence it was, that Jesus Christ said unto his disciples, Mark xvi.15, 'Go and preach the gospel to every creature under heaven:' that is, Go and tell every man without exception, that here is good news for him; Christ is dead for him; and if he will take him, and accept of his righteousness, he shall save him". In other words, Fisher makes the statement that God has a saving love for every sinner.

Then you quote Calvin: "But God is sometimes said to love those whom he does not approve or justify; for, since the preservation of the human race is agreeable to Him — which consists in justice, uprightness, moderation, prudence, fidelity, and temperance — he is said to love the political virtues; not that they are meritorious of salvation or of grace, but that they have reference to an end of which he approves. ". In other words, Calvin makes the statement that God has a love for some, which is not a saving love.

Then to my statement illustrating election and reprobation with the Scriptural statement of the two-edged sword, you reply:

It is a two edged sword and a savor of death unto death. We are not talking about the salvific activity of the Word of God when we are talking about the general love of God. That belongs to His special revelation and the personal operation of the Holy Spirit. The general love of God for his creation does not impinge on His eternal and electing love or His justified eternal damnation.
Which is something quite different that what Fisher said. Don't you see that????
 

JOwen

Puritan Board Junior
It is the difference between the general call and the effectual call. The general call of the Gospel, common love, common grace stem from the warrant to believe as mankind lost. Effectual calling however is the Word and Spirit working in the heart of unregenrate to the saving of their souls. There is not apples and orenges in Calvin or the Wrod. Only two kinds or degrees of love.
This is evident as Calvin has explained.
 

Puritan Sailor

Puritan Board Doctor
Bert, lets go at this from another angle. Perhaps it will help you better understand Fisher, Boston, and Calvin. A sinner comes to you and says, "What must I do to be saved." What are you going to tell him?
 

AV1611

Puritan Board Senior
It is the difference between the general call and the effectual call. The general call of the Gospel, common love, common grace stem from the warrant to believe as mankind lost. Effectual calling however is the Word and Spirit working in the heart of unregenrate to the saving of their souls.
I must object to this most strongly. The general call is not common love and nor did Calvin teach that:

The expression of our Savior, “Many are called, but few are chosen” (Mat_22:14), is also very improperly interpreted (see Book 3, chap. 2, sec. 11, 12). There will be no ambiguity in it, if we attend to what our former remarks ought to have made clear, viz., that there are two species of calling: for there is an universal call, by which God, through the external preaching of the word, invites all men alike, even those for whom he designs the call to be a savor of death, and the ground of a severer condemnation.[Institutes, 3, 24, 8]
As the Lord by the efficacy of his calling accomplishes towards his elect the salvation to which he had by his eternal counsel destined them, so he has judgments against the reprobate, by which he executes his counsel concerning them. Those, therefore, whom he has created for dishonor during life and destruction at death, that they may be vessels of wrath and examples of severity, in bringing to their doom, he at one time deprives of the means of hearing his word, at another by the preaching of it blinds and stupefies them the more.[Institutes, 3, 24, 12]
Nor can it be questioned, that God sends his word to many whose blindness he is pleased to aggravate. For why does he order so many messages to be taken to Pharaoh? Was it because he hoped that he might be softened by the repetition? Nay, before he began he both knew and had foretold the result: “The Lord said unto Moses, When thou goest to return into Egypt see that thou do all those wonders before Pharaoh, which I have put in thine hand: but I will harden his heart, that he will not let the people go” (Exo_4:21). So when he raises up Ezekiel, he forewarns him, “I send thee to the children of Israel, to a rebellious nation that has rebelled against me.” “Be not afraid of their words.” “Thou dwellest in the midst of a rebellious house, which has eyes to see, and see not; they have ears to hear, and hear not” (Eze_2:3, Eze_2:6; Eze_12:2). Thus he foretells to Jeremiah that the effect of his doctrine would be, “to root out, and pull down, and to destroy” (Jer_1:10). But the prophecy of Isaiah presses still more closely; for he is thus commissioned by the Lord, “Go and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not, and see ye indeed but perceive not. Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert and be healed” (Isa_6:9,Isa_6:10). Here he directs his voice to them, but it is that they may turn a deafer ear; he kindles a light, but it is that they may become more blind; he produces a doctrine, but it is that they may be more stupid; he employs a remedy, but it is that they may not be cured. And John, referring to this prophecy, declares that the Jews could not believe the doctrine of Christ, because this curse from God lay upon them. It is also incontrovertible, that to those whom God is not pleased to illumine, he delivers his doctrine wrapt up in enigmas, so that they may not profit by it, but be given over to greater blindness. Hence our Savior declares that the parables in which he had spoken to the multitude he expounded to the Apostles only, “because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given” (Mat_13:11). What, you will ask, does our Lord mean, by teaching those by whom he is careful not to be understood? Consider where the fault lies, and then cease to ask.[Institutes, 3, 24, 13]
Let us look at the Canons:

Canons I, 3 "And that men may be brought to believe, God mercifully sends the messengers of these most joyful tidings, to whom he will and at what time he pleaseth; by whose ministry men are called to repentance and faith in Christ crucified. Romans 10:14, 15:"How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach except they be sent?""

Canons II, 5 "Moreover, the promise of the gospel is, that whosoever believeth in Christ crucified, shall not perish, but have everlasting life. This promise, together with the command to repent and believe, ought to be declared and published to all nations, and to all persons promiscuously and without distinction, to whom God out of his good pleasure sends the gospel."

Canons III/IV, 8 "As many as are called by the gospel, are unfeignedly called. For God hath most earnestly and truly shown in his Word, what is pleasing to him, namely, that those who are called should come to him. He, moreover, seriously promises eternal life, and rest, to as many as shall come to him, and believe on him."

I do not find your teaching taught herein.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top