John 15 Losing eternal life

Theo1689

Well-known member
Two ways. The whole topic of the parable is the condition of the land, and the description of each type of land is decribed by the way people lead their lives.

Sorry, but there is nothing in the parable about men "conditioning their own hearts".
That's why you didn't provide any verse or citation.
It sounds like you're treading very close to salvation by works.
 

Theo1689

Well-known member
Hebrews 11 By faith we understand that God made the world.

Why did you not give a valid citation, and not correctly quoting the verse?

Heb.11:3 By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.

This does NOT say, "by faith we know that God exists".
It says we understand that (1) God created the universe, and (2) He did it through His word.
 

Alexander the adequate

Well-known member
Why did you not give a valid citation, and not correctly quoting the verse?

Heb.11:3 By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.

This does NOT say, "by faith we know that God exists".
It says we understand that (1) God created the universe, and (2) He did it through His word.
So can you articulate your position about knowing God exists? IS it by faith?
 

Theo1689

Well-known member
Absolutely, and i believe it is teaching in concert with "Guard your hearts" that the ground is prepared by the way we live our lives

I can't find that phrase in Scripture (which is why it is annoying that you never give citations, it makes it 3 times more difficult to have a discussion with you).

All I could find was this:

Phil. 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
 

Slyzr

Well-known member
Again, you're assuming synergism.
In farming, soils don't condition themselves, the farmer does it.

And this fits perfectly with Scripture, which teaches that it is GOD who gives us a good heart:

Ezek. 11:19 And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh:

Ezek. 36:26 A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.

The soil does tend to regenerate.

The farmer, tends to the crops and might add stuff into it.

But that does not negate the soil.
 

Alexander the adequate

Well-known member
I can't find that phrase in Scripture (which is why it is annoying that you never give citations, it makes it 3 times more difficult to have a discussion with you).

All I could find was this:

Phil. 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
I don't accept that you don't know where the sower and the seeds is in scripture. I am simply drawing conclusions from what jesus taught there. If you think my conclusions are wrong, we can talk
 

Alexander the adequate

Well-known member
In Romans 2, God's existence is testified to through His creation.
It is not by faith.
I had said that I was discussing Hebrews 11, not Romans 2, but yes, there are simlarities between them. I would think that bewteen the two passages you could draw pretty clear ideas about faith and knowing God
 

Josheb

Well-known member
Calvinists help me here. I have never embraced the idea that eternal life could be taken away once we have been indwelt by Christ, but this passage has language that looks like we can be IN Christ and then be thrown away and burned.
What do Calvinists teach here about the dynamic being dicsussed by Jesus in te first few verses of John 15?
Let's start with an examination of the analogy Jesus is using. Have you ever planted anything that bore fruit (a vine, a tree, a fruit or vegetable seed)? If so, then what happened when that plant grew? Did it produce or not? What Jesus is referencing is a concept, idiom, analogy, or figure that runs from the Bible literally from its beginning to its end. It begins with the report in creation of God planting plants that produced..... according to their kind.

Genesis 1:11-12
Then God said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees on the earth bearing fruit after their kind with seed in them”; and it was so. The earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed after their kind, and trees bearing fruit with seed in them, after their kind; and God saw that it was good.

Elsewhere in the gospels Jesus speaks about the seed sown in or on various types of soil and the seed sown on good soil produces. It's the seed sown on not-good soil that does produce. The good-soil seed may produce at various rates (30%, 60% or 100%) but the salient point is it produces. That is what it does. Jesus uses a little hyperbole in Luke 6 when he speaks of a good tree never bearing bad fruit, nor a bad tree never bearing good fruit. There are dozens of examples like this throughout the Bible.

Therefore, we ask ourselves, "What kind of vine is Jesus?" NOT "What kind of fruit am I?" A fruit growing on an apple tree is going to be an apple. It's never going to be a peach or a pear. The questions pertaining to the loss of salvation have to do with whether or not the person is, in fact, a fruit of the vine that is Jesus because Jesus does not produce bad fruit. There are a variety of problems arising scripturally, theologically, and logically the moment we even remotely suggest Jesus is an imperfect vine that can and does produce bad fruit....... or no fruit at all.

Calvinists DO NOT subordinate God to the will or the conduct of the creature. EVER. We keep the "horse" at the front of the cart and measure everything God-centrically, not human-centrically.

Keep in mind the John 15 text is an analogy. It is figurative language. It is not literal. Jesus is not literally a vine. Not only is it not literal exposition but neither should it be read apart from the whole of God's word. Some passages seem to conflict with John 15, especially if we make God's salvation (it is God's salvation, not ours) dependent upon the sinful creature. Passages like 1 Cor. 15:9-15 tells us all our works can be burned up as worthless and we'll still be saved if we're building on the foundation of Christ. Not building on Christ? Then don't expect to be saved. If you're growing on the perfect vine that is Jesus then you will be the branch he produces and if you're not the branch he produces then you weren't really on the vine in the first place. As far as the fruit you produce..... if you're growing on the vine that is Jesus, then your branch produces will bear fruit and that fruit may or may not have any salvific merit. Even if it's otherwise "good" fruit it will be discarded any time it is the produce of the flesh. God does not need or want anything from human flesh. All of that will be tossed in the fiery pit but you'll still be the branch of the one true vine if you are, in fact, a branch of that vine.

One last point. We necessarily understand (or we should necessarily understand) we are not our own. The redeemed have been purchased. The price God paid was the life of His Son. He paid the price, and He paid that price as The Sovereign Almighty Creator God Who Saves, not as a feeble creature whose money can be made worthless, or a fool who can be conned by the item being bought. There is no, "Here, I don't like this item, let me give it back, and give me my money back." The blood was spent. It was not just spent, it was sovereignly spent. The purchase was a sovereign purchase. There's no return policy. That cheapens the life of His Son and makes the cost the Son paid fruitless, worthless. It doesn't matter whether it's God taking back the item or the bought and paid for creature demanding his sinful deadness back. God is a fruit-bearing God Who bears the fruit He intends to bear. We are slaves. There are no autonomous agents anywhere in creation. A person is either a slave of sin of a slave of righteousness. No non-slaves. Blessedly, by grace, by providence, the blood-bought slave of righteousness is also a bondservant of God, but also an adopted son (or daughter).

Apples don't wrest themselves from the vine. Apart from Jesus the branch can do nothing.

There is much, much more that could be said about the John 15 text because he's referencing a pile of Old Testament text and speaking about the intersection of soteriology, ecclesiology, and eschatology. For simplicity's sake it can all be summarized within a single concept:


God is in charge, and we are not.


God has not and does not make Himself not in charge of anything.
 

Theo1689

Well-known member
Earlier in this discussion i quoted where the concept of "guard your hearts" is found (Prov 4:23) and then used it as a reference for the sower and the seed

First of all, what was your arbitrary basis for linking Prov. 4:23 to the parable of the soils? It's like combining, "And Judas went out and hanged himself." "And Jesus said, go and do though likewise."

And there is nothing in the parable about "instructions" that we are to "condition" our hearts.
 

Theo1689

Well-known member
Yes, we are born with that natural ground, the heart of flesh, how we till it is up to us

Actually, the "natural ground" is a heart of stone.
God has to replace our heart of stone (stone cannot yield crops) with a heart of flesh (which is living tissue). God gives us life, that's regeneration.

And I think it was christ_undivided who had the good point that we are made from the dust of the Earth, and so the soil would not represent only our heart to the exclusion of the rest of our body.

My grandfather was a farmer, and my dad and uncles grew up on that farm. And soil doesn't "till" itself.

Rocky soil doesn't clear its own rocks.
Pathways don't break themselves up.
And every one of Jesus' hearers would have known that.
 
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