October 18, 2008

Promoting Lawlessness?

The following video clip is from three renowned Calvinists John Piper, Tim Keller, and D.A. Carson. This video is from their Gospel Coalition website.

I want to share this as another example of what's wrong with Calvinism. Keller and company are essentially discussing what they have coined as "Christ-centered" theology. Now on the outset this sounds really good. But the deception here is what they are truly promoting is "Lawlessness"!

Pay particular attention to what Tim Keller says at about 2:00 min. into the video. This statement is just unbelievable. Keller is explaining that he can continue to sin, that "no matter what he does" this will of course have no impact on his eternal security. He coins this as "costly grace". What exactly is "costly grace"? According to Keller, this is the grace that God supposedly has given the elect or Christ paid for on behalf of the elect, whereby God no longer see's or takes into account all of their future sins because they have been already paid for - so therefore how can God already punish them for those sins that Jesus had supposedly already been punished for on the cross. The deception here is there is NO WHERE in the bible that says all our future sins have been paid for - No where! Look it up! This is purely a product of Calvinism. It is only the past sins we have committed that have been covered on the cross - not your future sins! God still requires that if a Christians stumbles and sins they must repent over those sins and if they don't then they will find themselves once again in rebellion towards God.

Notice at about 2:30 into the video you will hear Tim Keller explain that Calvinism is neither "cheap grace" or "moralism" or "relativism" or "legalism", but someone in the "middle" - in other words Calvisnism it is at neither end of the doctrinal spectrum but somewhere in the middle. This all sounds really good, but what these gents are really promoting is "lawlessness" disguised as "grace". The underlining deception is that they are promoting a belief that the moral laws of God are either too difficult to keep or that man lacks the capacity or the ability in keeping God's Moral Law. This of course is a result of their adherence to Original Sin/Total Depravity.

John Piper goes onto to say what this "Gospel Coalition" is really about promoting a form of "Gospel-centered" living. Sounds good. But the deception is they have labeled their terms to sound good, but one has to dig a little beyond the surface into how they truly define these terms.

So what does this "Gospel-centered" living really entail. Well at about 4:19 of the video Piper makes an astonishing and unbelievable statement - He says:

"Jesus said your to gouge out your eye or your going to hell and and that's one kind of motivation and not a bad one, and it raises the stakes to eternity. But were saying success in that part this life better have been fought significantly with a centering on you being justified".

Jesus is clear in this teaching that if something is a source of sin, it is better that you stop or cut off your own hand or gouge out you own eye than go to hell for all eternity (Matt 5:29) . Jesus is saying that it is up to man stop his or her sinful behavior - even if it means entering into eternity lame or blind. Notice Jesus didn't say anything about a persons inability not to sin, but clearly and plainly tells us turning from sin is well within our means.

But yet pay close attention how Piper denies the very words of Christ by essentially saying all that really doesn't matter, he sidelines Christ teaching by subtly replacing it with one of his own. According to Piper all you really need to do is not stop sinning, but simply force your mind on the fact that you have been "justified". As a result, your sinful actions no longer matter to God, nor should it matter to you. But how do they come to this conclusion? The theology of Justification. Justification in the Calvinist sense really boils down to a theology that all your past present and future sins have already been paid for and as a result - no matter what you do your still saved or "eternally secured".

Another interesting claim Keller makes here is that he claims that most teens and young people have been "turned" off by churches that preach so called "legalism". I would venture to say that Keller once again has this all wrong. Most churches I see today aren't preaching legalism (Keller also openly admits this on the video), but I would venture to say that most churches preach an easy-believism or "greasy-grace" type theology. Young people are not being repulsed by a non-existent doctrine of legalism, but what they truly lack is conviction and repentance! Teens and young adults see no need for church because of the hypocrisy they see. It's all those people like Tim Keller, who say they can continue to sin and still be called a child of God! What young people can't stomach is the hypocrisy they see out of most churches today - not legalism! Most churches lacks substance, lacks the power to change peoples hearts. So why would they ever want to waste their time in such a theological system?

(A side note: Isn't funny that Keller speaks of these young people as if it is what they "hear" that helps influence or determine whether they will choose Christianity??? Again, this one of the inconsistencies we see with Calvinism. On one hand we see Keller speaking about doctrine and religion as if these terms are meaningful in drawing people to Christ, but yet on the other they will deny the very same statement they just made and lay the claim of mongerism)

I would be interested in hearing your thoughts about this video as I find it very interesting insights into the contradictions within Calvinism and the Gospel.


video

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

You wrote, "The deception here is there is NO WHERE in the bible that says all our future sins have been paid for - No where! Look it up! This is purely a product of Calvinism. It is only the past sins we have committed that have been covered on the cross - not your future sins!"

Are you telling me that the sins you committed were in the past - Before the cross??? How is that possible??? Every sin you have, or ever will commit is FUTURE in relation to the cross.

I for one am glad that I don't have to rely on my own righteousness to get into heaven. I will get into heaven not because I am perfect, but because I am in Christ, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from keeping the law (which by the way I strive to do)but that which comes through faith in Christ (see Philippians 2).

I am in no way saying that it is OK for a Christian to sin, but if you claim that you have no sin you are a liar and you do not belong to God (1 John 1:8-10).

Romans 8 also makes it clear that there is NO condemnation for those who are in Christ. It does not say for those who are in Christ and never sin, it says for those who are in Christ.

I couldn't imagine trying to live a life of absolute perfection; I choose instead to rest in Christ and trust that He paid for all of my sins - past, present, and future. And as He reveals that I have a sin in my life, I repent of it, I confess it, and I continue to rest in Him - not my own righteousness.

Preston N said...

I said "in the Calvinistic Sense". Calvinist beleive that your literal sins (past, present and future) were paid for on the cross, thus this is why they have a Limited Atonement because it is limited to those whose sins were literally paid for on the cross. This is also why some Calvinist beleive that once your saved you don't have to repent because your sins have already been forgiven as a result of Christ already paying for those literal sins. The atonement is not a card blanche of forgiveness.

As for your comments, where have I ever said my righteousness is what saves me from sin or that by keeping the law is what saves us - never! What I have clearly stated on this blog is that it is our love and devotion for the Lord that compels us not to sin. Jesus says "Love covers a multitude of sins", so one must ask themselves do they really love the Lord?? No man can serve two masters -either your fully devouted to the Lord and you will choose not to sin ("He that loves me will obey my commands!") or your still in love with yourself and you continue to abide in sin. I have always said that we must crucify our old self and be born again.

Let me put it to you another way. Let's say you claimed to love your husband or wife. As a result you make a vow to love your spouse and be fully devouted to that one person for the rest of your life. It is love and devotion that motivates you to remain faithful to that spouse. Now, the bible is very clear that sin is a product of the love of self (selfishness). So let's say you go to your spouse and tell them "Look honey I love you and all, but I can't help myself from going out on a weekly basis and cheating on you with other women or men, but please realize that I do love you?" Do you think your wife or husband would would begin to question your faithfulness and love that you claim to have for them???

Paul says that we as Christians are the bride of Christ. This is an analogy of how the church is to remain faithful to its spouse - Jesus. You can "rest" all you want - the bigger question is do you truly and faithfully love the Lord? Are you remaining every faithful to the bride of Christ or are you sinning in word thought and deed everyday? Are you dying to yourself daily in order to remain faithful and devoted to Christ??? Again it's not about outwardly following the regulations or laws, but if you have changed your heart and love Christ with every part of your being and self??

Chose you this day whom you will serve? Self or God!?

Anonymous said...

I don't disagree with what you are saying here about the need to repent and turn from sin, but I also know that the Holy Spirit reveals to me regularly that I am sinning in some area that I didn't even realize was a sin until He showed me. When that happens I confess that sin to God, I turn from it, and I am even more grateful for the grace and mercy that He provides through our Lord Jesus Christ.

I am not sinless, only Jesus is sinless. And that is why I need to be clothed in Christ and have His righteousness imputed to me. I have read enough of your blog to know that you think you don't sin, but my Bible tells me that all (myself included) sin and fall short of the standard that God has set for us - moral perfection - and that in all of history the only one who has ever achieved that standard in Jesus. For me to say that I have achieved that standard would be hypocritical, pride filled, and a lie.

Also, you said, "Calvinist beleive that your literal sins (past, present and future) were paid for on the cross, thus this is why they have a Limited Atonement because it is limited to those whose sins were literally paid for on the cross. This is also why some Calvinist beleive that once your saved you don't have to repent because your sins have already been forgiven as a result of Christ already paying for those literal sins."

As a Calvinist I will tell you that You do not understand Limited Atonement because that is not what the doctrine means. And as a Calvinist I find it offensive that you would say that we think we don't need to repent. Because of the grace that God has given me though the atoning death of His Son I am compelled by my love and gratitude for Him to repent of every sin He reveals to me.

Preston N said...

Anonymous - As for your use of 1 John 1:8 let me provide the following from Charles Finney explains this verse:

(1.) This verse is immediately preceded by the assertion that "the blood of Jesus Christ cleanseth us from all sin." Now it would be very remarkable, if immediately after this assertion, the Apostle should mean to say that it does not cleanse us from all sin, and if we say it does we deceive ourselves. But if this objection be true, it involves the Apostle in as palpable a contradiction as could be expressed.

(2.) If the Apostle meant to say that we deceive ourselves, if we suppose ourselves to be in a state of entire sanctification, his assertion in the next verse is truly another wonderful contradiction. "If," he continues, "we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." In another place he says, "all unrighteousness is sin." Now, if it be true that God is really just to forgive and cleanse us from all unrighteousness or from all sin, and "the blood of Jesus Christ cleanseth us"--not shall, but actually does cleanse us,--"from all sin;" how remarkable it would be, if, between two such assertions as these, the Apostle meant to be understood to teach, that if we say His blood cleanseth us from all unrighteousness, we deceive ourselves!

(3.) But the tenth verse shows plainly what the Apostle meant, for he merely repeats what he had said in the eighth verse: "If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar."

This then is the meaning of the whole passage. If we say that we are not sinners, i.e. have no sin to need the blood of Christ, that we have never sinned, and consequently need no Savior, we deceive ourselves. For we have sinned, and nothing but the blood of Christ cleanseth us from sin. And now, if we will not deny but confess that we have sinned, "He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." "But if we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us."

Anonymous Calvinist said...

I see you have turned off the ability to post anonymous comments. Just for the record, I am NOT the anonymous you have been having the discussion with on your other post; however, I do choose to remain anonymous for personal reasons.

Are you aware that in 1 John 1:8 the word "have" is a perfect indicative active verb, which means that it is referring to continuous, repeated, and ongoing action on the part of the subject. So in this case the verb means that if you say, and keep on saying that you have no sin, you are deceiving yourself.

Additionally, the word confess in verse 9 is in the present tense, which means that confession of sin is a present action as opposed to an action that happened in the past or will happen in the future.

Therefore, for someone to say that they have no sin (presently) is to be self-deceived.

Jesus said that the greatest commandment is to love God with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength. Can you really say that you have done that perfectly since the day you were born again - that every second of every day, in everything you think, say, or do, that you love God perfectly?

If you say yes you have much bigger problems than the way you interpret 1 John chapter 1.

An Anonymous Calvinist

Preston N said...

Anonymous Calvinist - The bigger issue you have is to stop trying to isolate verses to fit your particular view or interpretation of Scripture. I don't deny the grammar or tenses of this passage but I would emphasize more importantly the context these verses were written in. It is beleived that the Apostle John wrote this in response to the influece brought about by both “Jews” and “Judaizers” or “Judaizing Christians", “Ebionites,” and other Gnostics - imparticular the sect known as the Nicolaitanes (whom John Reference in Rev 2:6,15). This sect of Gnostics were thought to have been who John was addressing in these verses. The Nicolaitanes had a theology that essentially said since they were Christians they could commit any sin or abomination and still be saved (Sound familar??). Verse 8 is not about faithful Christians, but about those who presumed they didn't need a savior (as a result of their false doctrines) or claimed they had never sinned (Jews or Judaizers).

Furthermore, one needs to look only a few verses prior to v8 that we see a direct contrast to your claim (if indeed this is to apply to the faithful Christian). For example, just prior to v8 is v7 that states:

1Jn 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

Is walking in the light include sinning in word, thought and deed daily or residing in your so called Total Depravity? John is setting up a contrast to show that the false doctrines of the Gnostics is in dark contrast to what the actual Christian life is really exemplify - holiness!

Another verse that contradicts your notion is Chapt 2:3-6

1Jn 2:3-6 And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. (4) He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. (5) But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. (6) He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.

So Anonymous are you keeping the commands of God, or are you sinning in word, thought and deed daily? According to these verses your theology stands in contrast to the Christian life as described by John.

Finally, the verses that seem to sum up and totally contradict your idea that 1John1:8 is speaking to Christians is found in Chapt 3:

1Jn 3:6-10 Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him. (7) Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous. (8) He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. (9) Whosoever is born of God DOTH NOT COMMIT SIN; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. (10) In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.

I am not really sure how you can say you sin daily or for that matter your still "Totally Depraved" as according to your theology these verses are practically impossible - as a matter of fact they are impossible to Calvinism.

http://truthinheart.com/
EarlyOberlinCD/CD/Mahan/ChrPerf.htm

Anonymous Calvinist said...

So then you are saying that you do love God perfectly, with your whole being, every second of every day. And that you have done so perfectly since your conversion?

If that is your position then you have a lot bigger problems than the way you interpret 1 John 1:8-10

naphtali777 said...

It's always interesting to me how the opponents of practical holiness have to resort to "proving" that you are a sinner to win the debate.

Let's just treat both claims as though they are true:

Preston: Claims to sin no more, and love and obey God daily.

Anonymous (and millions of others): Claims to sin daily in word thought and deed.

Who, in practice, is the friend of God in this case? Who is His enemy?

Anonymous Calvinist said...

In this case I would say that the friend of God is the one who, while striving for practical holiness realizes that they fall short, and instead of relying on their own righteous deeds they put themselves fully in the arms of Christ trusting in His righteousness for the forgiveness of their sin.

Preston N said...

naphtali777 - My sentiments exactly. For reasons beyond me I can't understand why I am sitting here wasting my time having a discussion with a so called beleiver who is exhausting copius amounts of time trying to defend sin. Personally I begin to question why they go to such great length to defend sin and deny even that holiness is not only attainable, but practical! Just as with Sin, holiness is not a place or a thing, but a change of the human will and heart.

Then I realize they must defend sin. Any person who goes around telling others they sin everyday in "word, thought and deed" must defend sin in order to quiet their conscience. If they can somehow rationalize that saints are sinners, then they can hush their conscience and be comforted in someway that they too are now saints also.

As to answer your question Anonymous Calvinist let me just say that I have indeed stumbled since my conversion - out of ignorance, forgetfulness. To that I am repentful and humbled that I have sinned against God and he is merciful to forgive. But even though I have sinned, it is still no excuse for sin, nor does it excuse our efforts as Christians not to continue in our day to day efforts in the pursuit of holiness. I realize in the back of your mind you might be wringing your hands and saying "See I told you couldn't do it", but alas this is the same old expression the enemy has been telling people for over a millenia - that holiness is not possible. I wonder Anonymous do you gloat over my stumblings or pray that we all strive to reach and attain that which Christ has rightfully commanded "By perfect as I am perfect"?

As Asa Mahan once said regarding our pursuit of holiness:

All (Christians) agree that the fact, that one is not thus perfect, should be to him a subject of deep repentance and humiliation, and of unfeigned sorrow and contrition of heart. It is certainly no pleasing feature of Christian character, that we are living in partial disobedience to the reasonable requirements of our God and Saviour; and the individual that can contemplate the fact that he is thus living, without deep' unfeigned, and unmingled contrition, penitence,
and self-abasement, gives fearful evidence that he is a stranger to the love of Christ. All(Christians) admit that it is the indispensable duty of every Christian to aim at entire perfection in holiness, and that the individual, who is not aiming at a full discharge of every duty, is wanting in, at least, one fundamental requisite of Christian character.

Patrick Durkee said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous Calvinist said...

Let me be clear; I am NOT, let me repeat, NOT, defending sin!!!! All Christians are to strive for holiness in word, thought, and deed, and any "Christian" who is not needs to question their conversion.

You wrote:
All (Christians) agree that the fact, that one is not thus perfect, should be to him a subject of deep repentance and humiliation, and of unfeigned sorrow and contrition of heart.

I couldn't agree more!

"It is certainly no pleasing feature of Christian character, that we are living in partial disobedience to the reasonable requirements of our God and Saviour; and the individual that can contemplate the fact that he is thus living, without deep' unfeigned, and unmingled contrition, penitence,
and self-abasement, gives fearful evidence that he is a stranger to the love of Christ."

Again, I completely agree. Any Christian that does not face their sin with contrition and repentance should be fearful.

"All(Christians) admit that it is the indispensable duty of every Christian to aim at entire perfection in holiness, and that the individual, who is not aiming at a full discharge of every duty, is wanting in, at least, one fundamental requisite of Christian character."

Again, I have no disagreement here. We ARE to AIM for perfection in holiness, and no sin is OK. But the reality is that this is a process that will last from conversion until we go home to be with the Lord, and it is only then that we will be completely free from sin.

How does this position possibly make me a defender of sin?

Preston N said...

A.C. - Would you ever AIM at a target you knew you could never hit? That's my point with Calvinism. Holiness to a Calvinist is an impossibility, a pipe dream, a target they know they will never hit (and for many why even try) Why? Because just look at what your doctrines promote:

Total Depravity - A theology that tells people even after their saved or born again they can still never truly overcome the flesh and thus they must and will continue to sin. It tells people sin is not a moral choice but something that resides within their flesh.

Once Saved Always Saved - a theology that states because of your totally depravity you can (or must) commit gross sins as a Christian and still never go to hell (as sin is in the flesh). Sin then is really never their fault, but Adams. It turns sin into a physical issue rather than a moral one.

Justification (Calvinistic definition) - This theology states all your exact future sins were literally paid for by Jesus. This is because of God's combined foreknowledge of sin and the elect, therefore God has already ordained what sins you will commit in the future. Since God cannot commit double jeopardy and charge or punish you twice for sins He has already forgiven in the past, your already pre-forgiven of these sins you'll commit in the future - thus allowing a person to know that they can commit any act of sin and still be "justified". This also is tied into OSAS as well.

Mongerism - the Calvinistic belief that any and all holiness is the direct work and responsibility of God. That holiness is not the partial responsibility of the individual - as this would be considered a "work". Therefore, this promotes an attitude of its God's fault that I am not holy as clearly I can not do anything good on my own (as a result of one's Total Depravity) so therefore it is God's responsibility to make me holy. Again this can promote a spiritual laziness and an attitude of apathy.

Calvinism in essence promotes a pseudo holiness. A false holiness and that is your positionally holy only in God's eyes and yet never truly free from the ravages of sin. But if this were true then God is only concerned about your position and not your actual well being. God is not really interested in alleviating you from sin, but merely forgiving you. But what is more cruel than that - to tell someone their holy but yet they are still living in sin? This is like telling a criminal they have been pardoned from prison and yet still allowed to go around committing crimes all the while the sheriff or police dept tell the citizens that same criminal is a part of the police dept!

As for myself I believe that holiness is attainable for several reasons. First, because sin is a choice and we have control over the choices we make in this life. Second, and foremost is because God clearly promises this in the scriptures:

Rom. 8:3, 4,—"For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God, sending his own Son, in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh; that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the spirit."

Again - is Paul speaking only of "positional" holiness or that the law might be fulfilled truly within each of us?

2 Cor. 5:15,—"And he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him that died for them, and rose again."

In other words, Christ died that his people might be free from all selfishness, and become purely and perfectly benevolent. Did he fail to accomplish his work?"

2 Peter 1:4,—"Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises; that by these ye might be partakers of the Divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust."

2 Cor. 7:1,—"Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God."

If to "escape the corruption that is in the world through lust," and to be "made partakers of the Divine nature," to "cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit," and to "perfect holiness," does not imply real and actual sanctification, how then can this verse be expressed - through positional holiness as expressed through Calvinism?? Then this verse is false. That the Christian may thus be sanctified is the declared object for which the promises were given. Does this verse speak of this occurring only on the other side of eternity?

Finally, let me add this. Calvinist have a dispensational theology whereby they believe the "Law" (Moral Law that is) does not apply to the new covenant, as it is impossible to keep the Moral Laws of God and that those laws only applied to the Jews. However, holiness is clearly required of not only the Jews, but of everyone.

Here is what Asa Mahan states regarding this (I suspect since you agreed with his comments from my last post you would also agree with these also?):

"Perfection in holiness is promised to the Christian in the new covenant under which he is now placed. To present this part of the subject distinctly before the reader's mind, we will first inquire what is the old or first covenant.

Exod. 34:27, 28,—"And the Lord said unto Moses, Write thou these words; for after the tenor of these words have I made a covenant with thee and with Israel. And he was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights; he did neither eat bread nor drink water. And he wrote upon the tables the words of the covenant, the ten commandments." Deut. 9:11, 15,—"And it came to pass at the end of forty days and forty nights, that the Lord gave me the two tables of stone, even the tables of the covenant." "So I turned, and came down from the mount, and the mount burned with fire; and the two tables of the covenant were in my hands." The first, or the old covenant, then, is the moral law, that law by which we are required to "love the Lord our God with all our powers, and our neighbor as ourselves." This covenant, as we learn from Heb. 9:1-4, had annexed to it the types and shadows of the ancient dispensation. "Then verily the first covenant had" attached to it "ordinances of Divine service, and a worldly sanctuary," etc.

What the new covenant is, we learn from Jer. 31:31-34, and Heb. 8:8-11,—"Behold the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah; not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers, in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt (which my covenant they brake, although I was a husband unto them, saith the Lord); but this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel: After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord; for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord; for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sins no more."

The following blessings, specifically promised in this covenant, demand our special attention:—1. A confirmed state of pure and perfect holiness, such as the first covenant, or moral law, demands—"I will put my law In their inward parts, and write it in their hearts." 2. The pardon of all sin, or perfect justification—"I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sins no more." 3. The perpetual fruition of the Divine presence and favor—"I will be their God, and they shall be my people." 4. The general spread of the Gospel among mankind—"All shall know me."


The differences A.C. is I believe holiness is literally attainable here on earth, while you believe holiness is something a Calvinist can only dream of and experience in eternity.

Anonymous Calvinist said...

And yet you still won't answer my question:

Do you love God with your whole heart, soul, mind, and strength perfectly every second of every day without exception?

Preston N said...

My answer:

YES! How is loving God any different than loving anything else in your life? Do you stop loving your wife and children every other day?? One day you hate your wife the next do you do love her?? Love is a committal of the will. Love is a result or product of knowledge. As my knowledge of God grows there to will my love and devotion for him grow also. God only requires us to presently love according to the amount of knowledge we have of him. We are to love Him with all of our heart, mind and strength that we presently have. God does not require man to love him beyond his present ability - that would be unloving and unjust. But God does require us to love Him with that which we currently posses.

Think of it this way - God is not in the business of giving commands that mankind cannot rightfully do or keep. If God is requiring us to do something that we are presently unable to accomplish and thus sending us to Hell for it - then He would considered a bad and unrighteous God. God's commands are just!

So to answer your question, yes I love God with all my heart, mind and strength. Don't you??? If not, repent and turn and love God!

Anonymous Calvinist said...

When did I ever say that you stop loving God (or your wife, or your children)? Do I love my wife? Yes! more than I could ever express to you. Do I love her perfectly? No, and neither does she love me perfectly. We are sinful people and we allow things like pride and jealousy creep into our relationship from time to time (just like everyone else does).

Do I love God? Yes! i love Him more than I love anything else, but I will never delude myself into thinking that when it comes to my love for God that I do so perfectly.

The overall direction of my life is that of moving toward Him and getting to know Him more each day, but to say that I love Him perfectly, at all times, with my whole being, would not only be false - it would show that I don't know Him.

God is so far above us that as we sit at His feet throughout all eternity we will still be no closer to fully knowing Him than we are right now. He is infinite and He is holy, and for me to think that I have come to the place where I am perfect before Him would show that I don't really know Him at all.

You are self deceived, my friend.