527 Comments
  1. Harold, I have been trying to keep up with the posts and yeah it is wonderful fellowship on here isn’t it! So many brothers and sisters all around the world.

    Do you believe it’s not possible for people to *become* Jesus’ sheep/become “of God”? (IE new creation in the Lord)

    Also, what if one is drawn, denies the Lord by rejecting His ways? (I suppose some scripture you can look at is, John 12:47-48, 2 Timothy 3:8-9, Jude 1:4,Titus 13-14, 1 Timothy 1:19 and 1 Thessalonians 4:8)

  2. Or here, this is some food for thought Harold;

    John 5:40 (NKJ)
    But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life.

  3. Harold,

    Sorry, but I’m quite pressed with some other projects now and haven’t been following the posts, but I encourage you to tune in to my debates with Dr. White on his Dividing Line broadcast on March 25 and April 1. I believe the first one I’ll be discussing John 6 among other passages he wants me to exegete.

  4. Eric,

    I do believe that people can become people/sheep of God, but the fact that people do not believe **because** they are not people/sheep of God should demonstrate that they cannot do so by believing. Those who believe in John 1 only can do so because they “were born not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man but of God.”

    So based upon the Scripture, Jesus makes His sheep to be His own, just as any shepherd chooses his sheep. The sheep never sort of decide who will be their shepherd. According to this Scripture, Jesus must make a person one of His sheep before a person can come to Jesus, and Jesus will raise all His sheep/people up on the last day.

    One can be drawn by the Gospel generally and not be saved, but every one who is drawn in John 6 is raised on the last day, and so given eternal life.

    So how do you understand John 6?

  5. Dr. Brown,

    I understand fully that you are pressed for time. And if I have not done so, I want to thank you for all of your work and for debating Dr. James White, as you have and will. 😀

  6. Exactly, people do not believe because they are not of God. Now when they believe they become sheep/of God. You can’t ignore the scripture that says Jesus will draw all to Himself just because you see that it causes a dilemma with your interpretation of John 6.

    Since you asked, this is how I understand John 6.

    John 6:44 No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day.

    Back up a little bit to verse 39.

    John 6:39 This is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day.

    Cross reference this with 2 Peter 3:9
    2 Peter 3:9 “….not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.”

    So it’s the will of the Father that all He gives Jesus, will not be lost, but that He should raise them up on the last day.

    However it does NOT say that Jesus will not lose any, it just says it’s the will of the Father that Jesus does not. Which is why I would make a cross reference to 2nd Peter 3:9 which says it’s not God’s will any should perish but that *ALL*, should come to repentance (repentance makes you a sheep).

    That’s how I understand John 6.

  7. Sorry, and also the raising on the last day part.

    John 6:40 And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.”

    So, once you are drawn you make the choice to believe or not, when you believe – you will have everlasting life AND then Jesus will raise you up on the last day.

    You hear the gospel, faith is given, the choice is made to believe or not to believe.

  8. I don’t mean to make 3 comments in a row but I just want to be understood, this is just my interpretation on John 6 and the cross reference I made. I am willing to change my views if they are wrong, and further my view of the truth – but you asked for my interpretation so that is it.

    Blessings!

  9. Hello Dr. Brown,

    You wrote:

    “Sorry, but I’m quite pressed with some other projects now and haven’t been following the posts, but I encourage you to tune in to my debates with Dr. White on his Dividing Line broadcast on March 25 and April 1. I believe the first one I’ll be discussing John 6 among other passages he wants me to exegete.”

    White has 5 primary proof texts. They are Genesis 50, Romans 9, John 6, John 10, and Acts 13:48. You already know Genesis 50 very well and have dealt with it extensively here. A friend of mine wrote two very good articles on Romans 9 and John 10 that may be helpful for you in your preparation for the next debate with White..

    The one on John 10 is the best presentation from a non-Calvinist perspective that I have ever seen. If you want to check it out for yourself here it is:

    http://evangelicalarminians.org/files/Hamilton.%20The%20Order%20of%20Faith%20and%20Election%20in%20John's%20Gospel..pdf

    He also did a very good article on Romans 9 as well, here it is:

    http://evangelicalarminians.org/files/Hamilton.%20Election%20in%20Romans%20Chapter%20Nine.pdf

    Dr. Brown I realize you are very busy, but in your preparation for your next debate with White, read these two articles particularly the first one on John 10 as part of your preparation.

    Robert 777

  10. Eric,

    As I am sure you wish to understand the Scriptures rightly, I must ask you about what you just said.

    First, why do you as step one jump out of John 6, assume a meaning to the textyou quote in order to interpret it?

    Second, if some people that are drawn in John 6:44 do not come to Christ, then why does Jesus state in John 6:44 “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws *him*; and I will raise *him* up at the last day.” Do you think that him who Jesus *may* come and be raised or doesn’t Jesus say, “I *will* raise him up on the last day”?

    If Jesus will, not may, raise the one who His Father draws, up on the last day, then how can you say that some do not come because of a decision or anything else?

    Thanks. 🙂

  11. Eric,

    As I am sure you wish to understand the Scriptures rightly, I must ask you about what you just said.

    First, why do you as step one jump out of John 6, assume a meaning to the textyou quote in order to interpret it?

    Second, if some people that are drawn in John 6:44 do not come to Christ, then why does Jesus state in John 6:44 “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws *him*; and I will raise *him* up at the last day.” Do you think that him who Jesus *may* come and be raised or doesn’t Jesus say, “I *will* raise him up on the last day”?

    If Jesus will, not may, raise the one who His Father draws, up on the last day, then how can you say that some do not come because of a decision or anything else?

    Thanks. 🙂

  12. To me John 6:39 shares the same “will of God” as 2nd Peter 3:9. I think Jesus is just paraphrasing what He said earlier, which would be verses 39-40 to the crowd He was talking to. I can’t just look at verse 44 and dismiss 39-40 which seem to me, more clear and detailed.

  13. Harold said, “You have to deal with Ephesians 2 and especially verse 8 rather than importing your theological presumptions and making what you see are logical conclusions.”

    I believe vs 5 is really the clue here. It tells us that, “(God) even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved)”

    We have been saved strictly by His grace – this alone is the gift.

    However, Paul knew that we had to appropriate the benefits of His grace and that is why he added “through faith” in vs 8.

    How I am I confident that Paul was referring to grace ALONE as the gift and not faith? Because that would imply that faith is a work according to vs 9 which I disagree. People could possibly boast about building a tower to heaven and saving themselves. However, no one, as discussed many times before, is ever going to boast after someone saves them from hell.

    Additionally, you never really addressed the final point in my previous post: “spiritually DEAD people had faith in Him long before the blood-stained cross. Therefore, we need not be regenerated in order to believe.”

  14. Eric,

    If Jesus was trying to express God’s desire to have all people saved, in this chapter, then why does Jesus state in John 6:44 “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws *him*; and I will raise *him* up at the last day.”

    You have to let Jesus give His context. He says twice that No one can come to Him unless His Father draws/grants them, but He does end what He says right there. Rather, He says thad He will actually raise the person that the Father draws up on the last day, that is give the eternal life.

    This is not just my interpretation, this is what Jesus says in John 6:44 “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws *him*; and I will raise *him* up at the last day.”

    Again, rather please look at what Jesus says, rather than giving an opinion about what Jesus says based on another passage entirely.

    If Jesus is talking about God’s general desire for all people to be saved, then you will have to hear what Jesus says, and explain what He says in His own words. Only then can I or you begin to see if Jesus is talking about what other Scriptures are talking about.

  15. Greg,

    Verse five and eight says that we’ve been saved by grace, but how does this cause one to ignore what Paul says in verse 8?

    Grace is no doubt a gift, as is all of salvation. However, this gift includes fath itself according to Eph2:8.

    I would be happy to talk about how God saved people in the old testament, but we first must answer the question of how He does so now. (I would have to say according to Rom 3-4 and numerous OT verses, that God has always saved the same way even though He has revealed much more of His salvation in the New Testament explicitly.)

  16. Harold,

    You wrote:

    “I would have to say according to Rom 3-4 and numerous OT verses, that God has always saved the same way…” I like this kind of thinking. (Heb. 4:2: 1 Pet. 1:25)

  17. “I would be happy to talk about how God saved people in the old testament, but we first must answer the question of how He does so now.”

    Let’s stick with the New Testament… How can John the Baptist, the Samaritan woman, Martha, the 12 disciples, the 70 (etc) believe in Jesus before they received God’s grace which was only possible after the Resurrection? People in the very presence of Jesus (not merely OT saints) believed that He was the Son of God prior to the Resurrection. How can this have occurred if spiritual rebirth is required in order to believe? All these people were still DEAD spiritually.

    Your doctrine eliminates the need for the cross. If people are spiritually reborn before the cross than the cross is not necessary.

    Peter rebuked Jesus for saying that He would suffer and die in Jerusalem, but Jesus told Him, “Get behind me Satan!”

    If you’re doctrine either eliminates or seems to eliminate the cross than be assured that Satan is influencing it.

  18. Harold,

    I really wouldn’t put as much stock on your reading of John 6 as you’re doing! As you’ll see when I discuss this on the air with James White, there are very simple explanations for the passages that seem to point you to Calvinism.

  19. Hello Greg,

    “Additionally, you never really addressed the final point in my previous post: “spiritually DEAD people had faith in Him long before the blood-stained cross. Therefore, we need not be regenerated in order to believe.””

    That is a ***great observation*** Greg. Prior to Acts 2 most of us do not believe that people received the Spirit in the Old Covenant as we do in the New Covenant. And yet the Old Covenant believers had faith without being regenerated. Very good point Greg, that is a “keeper”! 🙂

    Couple observations on John 6.

    Many, many determinists will run to 6:44 as a proof text for their deterministic theology and system. But all that the TEXT ACTUALLY STATES is that this preconversion work is necessary in order for someone to end up having saving faith in Jesus.

    The text DOES NOT SAY: GOD ONLY DRAWS THOSE WHOM HE HAS PRESELECTED FOR SALVATION (cf. Jn. 12:32 which says that ALL are drawn, written by the same author and in the same book, compare scripture with scripture).

    The text DOES NOT SAY: ALL WHO ARE DRAWN WILL BECOME CHRISTIANS. This is the determinist’s false doctrine of irresistible grace. It is part of their system BUT NO WHERE TO BE FOUND OR STATED IN ANY BIBLICAL TEXT.

    The text **does say** and says so explicitly and unequivocally, that in order to have saving faith in Christ a person had to have been drawn. I do a lot of evangelism so I have seen how this works literally. You present the gospel and the Spirit works in individual hearts revealing things to that person. Things that unless they know and understand they cannot make the choice to trust in Christ alone for salvation. They have to experience this preconversion work by the Spirit or they cannot be saved. And yet some people experience this work of the Spirit and end up becoming believers while others experience the work of the Spirit and are still not yet saved and may never be saved (this demonstrates that while the work of the Spirit enables a person to have faith this work does not necessitate a faith response).

    If we keep with what the text says and do not read in deterministic ASSUMPTIONS OR PRESSUPOSITIONS (e.g. God only draws those whom he preselected for salvation, that is a mere assumption, presupposition of the Calvinistic system READ INTO THE TEXT; all who are drawn will become Christians) then the texts of John 6 present no problems at all. They **only become problematic** when we allow the determinists to READ IN their presuppositions into the text rather than exegeting from the texts to our exegetical conclusions.

    Robert 777

  20. Harold, you interpret Scripture with Scripture, why am I not allowed to interpret this with 2 Peter 3:9? This is why it’s hard to explain what I am trying to say here to you. I am cross referencing John 6:39-40 with 2nd Peter 3:9 simply because they both express the will of God. Jesus says, (paraphrasing) “This is the will of the Father that I should lose none He has given me.” Now, this doesn’t say NONE will be lost like you are reading it as. It simply says this is the will of God that none will be lost, that are drawn. Now, that is why I cross reference it with 2 Peter 3:9 because that same will of God is expressed there, God wants none to perish, Jesus says God wants none to be lost.

    What is the problem?

    You can’t isolate John 6:44 from John 6:39-40, or the rest of Scripture for that matter. Jesus is paraphrasing what He said in vs 39-40 in vs 44. You can compare the text yourself and look what is being said. I think I would agree with most of Robert777’s post as well and excited to see what Dr. Brown says on Dr. Whites show!

  21. ‘Very good point Greg, that is a “keeper”!’

    Thanks Robert777, and I think it’s even more interesting when we take pre-cross NT believers into account such as Martha, John the Baptist, Samaritan woman, blind man who washed in pool of Siloam, etcetera…

  22. Hello Eric,

    I have had a lot of experience with non-Christian cults and they do a lot of proof texting. Meaning they read into some selected text their concepts, their assumptions, their presuppositions, their erroneous system of theology. One of the ways you show their error is precisely by comparing scripture with scripture, showing they are proof texting and showing what other bible texts on the same subject say as well.

    Of course cultists will then say that’s not right or fair, that you have to stay with the text they are proof texting from! 🙂 Does any of this sound familiar here Eric? 🙂

    Eric you wrote:

    “Harold, you interpret Scripture with Scripture, why am I not allowed to interpret this with 2 Peter 3:9?”

    I guess what is good for the goose in not good for the gander now is it? 🙂

    This is both a double standard and again exactly something that cults do. When they are making their point from one of their proof texts, we are not allowed to go to any other text. But when THEY WANT TO GO OUTSIDE THE TEXT TO OTHER TEXTS TO FUTHER PROOF TEXT, that is OK in their thinking!

    It is ironic that I have heard James White engage in exactly the same thing when he is “interpreting” John 6 and specifically 6:44 (he reads in his Calvinistic concepts and presuppositions and assumptions into the text) and yet when a non-calvinist brings up John 12:32 he then argues that is not right. You can’t do that, it is not fair, it is not the proper way to interpret scripture! And yet then when he is talking about a text he will bring up other texts from other places to bolster his proof text! In other words here is this expert on cults doing precisely what the cults do with Jn. 6:44 and Jn. 12:32 being compared.

    Again I say forget White, forget what the cultists want, forget what any ideologues want, compare scripture with scripture on a given issue or topic.

    Eric you stated:

    “You can’t isolate John 6:44 from John 6:39-40, or the rest of Scripture for that matter. Jesus is paraphrasing what He said in vs 39-40 in vs 44. You can compare the text yourself and look what is being said.”

    Don’t let cultists or Calvinists or anyone else, ever dictate that you are not to compare scripture with scripture. Someone who really wants the truth is not afraid of carefully examining what different scriptures on the same topic say. It is cultists and others with a theological axe to grind and agenda that forbid comparing scripture with scripture.

    Robert 777

  23. Greg,

    Of course all the gifts of salvation, including faith, and the people themselves are purchased by Jesus on the cross. Those saved in the Olld Testament era were purchased by Jesus on the cross with his blood just as those of the New Testament era.

    Again I ask you to please consider the texts that I have asked you to because it seems that you are wanting to do almost anything but this. Verse five and eight again says that we’ve been saved by grace, but how does this cause one to ignore what Paul says in verse 8?

    Grace is no doubt a gift, as is all of salvation. However, this gift includes fath itself according to Eph2:8, does it not?

    If not, show me from the text. Please stick with the text at hand before you talk about other things as you have.

  24. Robert 777,

    You say the text “DOES NOT SAY: ALL WHO ARE DRAWN WILL BECOME CHRISTIANS.”

    The text says that those who are drawn are raised up on the last day, and this is to be given eternal life. Just look at the text. John 6:44 says, “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws *him*; and I will raise *him* up at the last day.”

    If I am mistaken, then show me. But you are simply not dealing with the text.

  25. Dr Michael L Brown,

    I look forward to your debate with Dr. James White as I am sure many do.

    I am putting all the stock in what I see that the text says. If you, or anyone else, can explain this text, doing justice to it, I would very much look forward to it.

    Thank you.

  26. Eric,

    You say, “I am cross referencing John 6:39-40 with 2nd Peter 3:9 simply because they both express the will of God.”

    The problem with what you are doing is that you are leaving John 6 to that other Scripture, before you even interpret John 6.

    Again, you may compare 2 Peter 3:9 with John 6. But you are not truly comparing them, because you are in the end, not interpreting either text. Before you compare one text with the other, understand John 6 within its context.

    I am not isolating “John 6:44 from John 6:39-40, or the rest of Scripture for that matter.” Please show me where I am doing such, if you see me doing such.

    In John 6, those who are drawn are raised, i.e. given eternal life.

    You have said that I am not interpreting John 6:44. Please show me where I have done this.

    Proof texting is where one someone just quotes a text and assumes it’s meaning. This is not what I am doing. I am interacting with the text.

    Also, I would be glad to interpret 2 Peter 3:9 within what Peter is saying in the immediate Chapter and the rest of Scripture, because it seems to me that you are just sort of assuming the meaning of that text as well.

    But again, please interpret John 6 first.

  27. Harold, I enjoy talking to you but I can’t get into much deeper into this discussion as I already stated my views on the text and hope I understand yours. Thanks for the fellowship, maybe another time we can pick up on this, that would be great.

    God bless!

  28. For starts, Harold, the one who is raised up on the last day is the one who comes; keep reading to see who that is in John 6! No one come unless drawn; not all who are drawn come!

  29. I don’t really want to spend much time discussing things concerning biblical texts with Harold because he tends to hold positions on the texts that no matter what you say he will just keep holding onto those positions. If someone is going to be strongly committed to false presuppositions no matter what evidence or information is given to them, it is a waste of time trying to persuade such a person. It is best just to move on. When dealing with such a person, I will sometimes choose to deal with something they have said not because what I will say will convince them but for the sake of others who are watching who may profit from it. With that in mind, Harold wrote:

    “You say the text ‘DOES NOT SAY: ALL WHO ARE DRAWN WILL BECOME CHRISTIANS.’
    The text says that those who are drawn are raised up on the last day, and this is to be given eternal life. Just look at the text. John 6:44 says, “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws *him*; and I will raise *him* up at the last day.
    If I am mistaken, then show me. But you are simply not dealing with the text.”

    In the gospel of John the phrase “come to Jesus” means come to Jesus for salvation through faith. A person who **comes** in this way is someone who has experienced the pre-conversion work of the Spirit and has decided to trust in Jesus for salvation. A person who makes this decision to trust is said to be according to the language of John, one who has come to Jesus. It does not mean literally anyone who walks up to Jesus. The rich young ruler literally came up to Jesus and had a conversation with him. But he was not saved as far as we know, he did not “come to Jesus” in the sense meant by the apostle John in his gospel.

    The 6:44 text also says of those who have “come to Jesus” (i.e. been saved through faith, made the decision to trust in Jesus alone for salvation) that Jesus will raise them up (meaning at the end if they have died physically Jesus will raise them up from the dead, or if alive at his coming he will change their bodies to be suited for the eternal state). This raising of believers has not yet occurred. So there is a gap in time between “coming to Jesus” and “being raised up” by Jesus.

    Jesus also says in the text that no one can “come to Jesus” (i.e. be saved by trusting in Jesus alone for their salvation) unless they have been drawn. So the drawing precedes the “coming to Jesus” in time. But there is also a gap in time between being drawn and coming to Jesus. Again I do lots of evangelism so I have seen some drawn the time they first heard the gospel and then they came to Jesus within the same hour. I have also seen others who heard the gospel message and interacted with different believers over time. Their being drawn took more time, but eventually they “came to Jesus”. I have also seen people who clearly received new understanding through the pre-conversion work of the Spirit who are not yet saved (and may never be saved). My point is that there is a time gap between being drawn and coming to Jesus. Being drawn and coming to Jesus are not the same thing. Drawing refers to the preconversion work of the Spirit who seeks to lead people to Christ for salvation (i.e. he seeks to lead people so that they “come to Jesus”). “Coming to Jesus” on the other hand refers to when an individual responds in faith to the preconversion work of the Spirit.

    Now if we understand these things, we can easily understand what Jesus was saying in Jn. 6:44. He says that no one who has come to Him (i.e. “come to Jesus”, had a response of saving faith) could do so unless that person had been drawn (i.e. experienced the preconversion work of the Spirit). And those who have in fact “come to Jesus” (i.e. had a response of saving faith)in this way, will be raised by Him at the end. Note Jesus does not say that ***only those who have been preselected for salvation*** will be drawn (that is not stated in the text but is read into it by calvinists such as Harold). Note Jesus does not say that all who are drawn will “come to Jesus”/be saved through faith (again that is not stated in the text but is read into it by calvinists such as Harold). Note Jesus does not say that the drawing cannot be resisted (that is not stated in the text but is read into it by calvinists such as Harold).

    No, what he does in fact say is that all who “come to Jesus” (i.e. have a faith response to the preconversion work of the Spirit) HAD TO HAVE BEEN DRAWN (they had to have experienced the preconversion work of the Spirit, or they could not “come to Jesus”).

    If we understand what the drawing is, if we understand the work of the Spirit before conversion, if we understand what the phrase “come to Jesus” means as used by John, then we have no trouble understanding Jn. 6:44 and we have no trouble seeing that it does not teach calvinism at all (unless you read in assumptions and presuppositions derived from the Calvinistic system into the text). We also understand that while all will be drawn according to Jn. 12:32 not all drawn will be saved, which again suggests that a person can be drawn and yet continue to resist and not be saved.

    And if we evangelize we have all seen this as well, and even looking at our own experience, we may see that we heard the message multiple times, through the preconversion work of the Spirit we knew it was true, we understood it and yet we may not have “come to Jesus” until days, months or years later. And during this time when we had been given understanding of our spiritual condition and about scripture and about the way of salvation, etc. etc. and yet had not yet “come to Jesus” we were still unbelievers at that time, were we not? And if we had this understanding and yet had not yet “come to Jesus” though we knew and understood the message having heard it multiple times, that means we were resisting the drawing for a time. If we had not resisted we would have believed and come to Jesus, but we had not yet come to Jesus, and we were not yet saved. And it is only those who resist the work of the Spirit for a lifetime that are not going to be saved.

    Robert 777

  30. Dr. Brown,

    Yes, “the one who is raised up on the last day is the one who comes” as you say.

    You ask who is drawn? Verse 44 says,

    “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws *him*; and I will raise *him* up at the last day.”

    It seems very clear that “him” who is drawn is “him” who is raised. The same one of course comes and learns and hears from the Father. But this does not negate the fact that Jesus said that the one drawn is the one raised.

  31. Dr. Brown,

    The one who is raised up on the last day is the one who comes. But the one who is drawn is the one who comes according to verse 44,

    “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws *him*; and I will raise *him* up at the last day.”

    This same one hears from the Father, learns from Him, sees Him, and believes in Him. However, he who is drawn is he who is raised in the 44th verse, no?

  32. Robert 777,

    I would only ask you to examin the text and show me where I have not understood it.

    I may agree with you that drawing includes pre-conversion work of the Holy Spirit, but if this is true then all who experience this work come to Christ, because the text says, the one who is drawn is the one who is raised.

    Also, if God is drawing all people, then why does Jesus explain the unbelieve of the people who followed Him, not in terms of them not choosing to have faith, but rather in terms of God’s drawing?

    “Jesus said to them, ‘I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. But I said to you that you have seen me and yet do not believe. All that the Father gives me will come to me’ ” (John 6:35-37a).

    Why does Jesus say whoever comes to Me will not hunger but you don’t–ALL the Father gives me will come to me”? Does this not say that they have not been given to the Son by the Father?

    Verse 39 says, “And this is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise it up on the last day.”

    Some have said something like, “Well, it doesn’t say Jesus is going to to actually accomplish the will of the Father.” But what does Jesus say is the Father’s will for Him in the very next verse?

    “For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day” (John 6:40).

    Does the Son actually accomplish the will of His Father here???? I should say, Yes!!!

    The Jews He was speaking with then began to grumble about Him, not believing. And what does Jesus say?? Does He say, “Well, if you would just turn to Me by making your will free from sin, then I would make you born again.” No!

    Verses 43-44 say, “Jesus answered them, ‘Do not grumble among yourselves. No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him: And I will raise him up on the last day.’ ”

    Verses 45-46 say, “It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Everyone therefore that has heard , and has learned of the Father, comes to me.”

    Every one who learns and hears from the Father comes to Jesus.

    Jesus then explains that He must be eaten as the bread of life and drunk as the fountian of life by a person if that person is to be saved.

    He explaines why people could not hear Him, “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life” (v. 63).

    He says, “But there are some of you who do not believe…This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father” (verses 64-65).

    The pattern is clear. Jesus explains their unbelief in terms of their inability to believe. Then He explains that no one can believe unless His Father grant them to believe and draw them. And the one who is drawn is raised up on the last day, that is given eternal life.

    Please show me FROM THE TEXT, if I have misunderstood something. Please, do not tell me *what* something means what it does, unless you show me *why* it means such, *from the text*.

    Thank You. 🙂

  33. Again, to anyone who will consider the words of Jesus,

    Please explain why Jesus says that the one who is drawn is raised in verse 44, and that ALL that the Father gives Him WILL come to Him.

    Does this not mean that God will actually accomplish the salvation of those He wills?

    Keep in mind, I have not pointed you anywhere but the Scriptures and I have not asked you to except any preconseptions. I have only asked you to consider the words of Jesus.

    Thank you all. 🙂

  34. Harold said, “Again I ask you to please consider the texts that I have asked you to because it seems that you are wanting to do almost anything but this. Verse five and eight again says that we’ve been saved by grace, but how does this cause one to ignore what Paul says in verse 8?”

    Respectfully, I believe I answered your question. I looked at the verse contextually and made a determination that Paul was specifically referring to Grace as the gift of God (the IT) in Ephesians 2:8. I don’t believe that it can be argued reasonably that faith is a work that deserves boasting.

    If I’m wrong I’m wrong, but, having read and considered both your posts as well as the text, this is my current position.

    Alternatively, in my opinion, I don’t feel that you’ve adequately addressed my refutation of pre-faith regeneration.

    Do you believe that the Cross is necessary for spiritual rebirth yes or no? Just a yes or no answer will be sufficient.

  35. Harold,

    You wrote, “he who is drawn is he who is raised in the 44th verse, no?” The answer is No. The one who comes is the one raised up, as I stated previously. It’s really self-evident, given the fact that “all” are drawn (according to 12:32, using identical language in the Greek) and yet not all come, and Jesus rebukes people for refusing to come. And if they had no choice, there was no reason for them to be rebuked. Note also that the promises in John 6 are made to those who come, not to those who are drawn.

    Anyway, I’ll be dropping out for some days but I do hope you prove open to receiving the clear testimony of Scripture, being willing to humble yourself and admit error if proven wrong. Based on what you tried to make John 3:16 state (after admitting what kosmos meant in context), I’m concerned that you are really seeing everything through the lens of a theological system rather than letting the Word speak for itself.

  36. Dr. Brown,

    I you happen to have time whenever, you can feel free to answer, I understand limited time. So whatever you can do is fine.

    I do see through a theological lense, as do you and we all. The point is to test that lense by seeing if that lense can let one see all the Scripture.

    You say, “The one who comes is the one raised up, as I stated previously.”

    This is true but it does not mean that Jesus did not say, “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him: And I will raise him up on the last day.” It plainly says that “him” who is drawn is “him” who is raised up.

    I am willing to augment my lense, as I have shown. And thus far, my lense, as small as it is, at least it comprehens these two truths: (1) Jesus died so that any human being will be saved if he believes and (2) no one comes to Jesus except all those who are granted and drawn.

    Respectfully, it seems to me that your lense cannot accept these two truths because you do not recognize the second from the mouth of Jesus.

    “No *one* can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws *him*: And I will raise *him* up on the last day.”
    –John 6:44

    Thank You

  37. Messiah Yeshua (Jesus Christ) said…
    the pure in heart will see God.

    “Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God.”
    Matthew 5:8

    Seems simple, actually. If we are pure in our hearts before God, we will see Him. If we keep our hearts washed in the blood of the Lamb, every day, turning to the Lord for our hearts’ washing by the cleansing power of the Holy Spirit…I believe we will be raised to be with Him forevermore.

  38. Greg,

    You say, “I looked at the verse contextually and made a determination that Paul was specifically referring to Grace as the gift of God (the IT) in Ephesians 2:8. I don’t believe that it can be argued reasonably that faith is a work that deserves boasting.”

    So there is no problem grammatically, with understanding faith as part of what is given and faith is the closest antecedent to the “that” which is given. Nevertheless, you say that faith cannot be given because it could not be considered something which is a “work”?

    Well, to answer this question, faith as you said in pointing to John 1, a recieving of Christ for who He is. (“To all who received Him, who believed in His name…”)

    So why does it seem unlikely that a person would boast or take pride in that he had been wise or sensible enough to know to come to receive Christ. I, for one, have spoken with those who say they know Christ who would take pride in that they were able to come to a right understanding and acceptance of Christ. These people would not tell you, “I’m saved because I did everything right”, they might even say that it was because of God, but if you ask, they will say it was only partly because of God. They would say God did most but they did the determining thing, without them finally determining things they wouldn’t be saved, not knowing that even their receiving Jesus, believing on His name, was not from their own wisdom.

    God means to leave no thing of which we could say, “I am saved because I did this. This is why God is so explicit as to say that even faith is from God. Also, John makes it explicit in another way. He says in the first chapter of his Gospel that those who “received Him, who believed in His name,” to whom He gave the right to become the Children of God “were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”

    This could not be more clear that we are not born of God because of our bloodline, fleshly will, OR human will. It could not be more clear. The context and grammar of Ephesians 2:8 is clear that faith is given. I do not understand how you could understand Ephesians 2:8 to say anything other than that faith is given along with the grace. Please how you understand the words,

    “By grace you have been saved through faith, and THAT is not from yourselves; it is a gift FROM God, not from works so that no one may boast.”

    Do you not see the basic facts that there is no problem grammatically with understanding faith as part of what is given and that faith is the closest antecedent to the “that” which is given? If so, then why do you not see the faith as given?

  39. Harold,

    In my previous post, I at least gave a brief explanation of why I believe that Eph.2:8 is referring to grace alone as a gift. If you want me to address your subsequent passages and illustrations, you should give me the courtesy of addressing my simple question:

    Yes or no – do you believe that the Cross is necessary for spiritual rebirth?

  40. Greg,

    I apologize for not answering you.

    My answer would be a resounding yes.

    I believe Hebrews teaches that all salvation was acomplished at the cross, so the rebirth (I would say that regeneration-ie new life-is rebirth) was purchesed along with all of salvations, and thus secured, at the cross.

    Thanks

  41. Greg,

    Oh, and I should add that those who were saved in the Old Testament era were saved by the cross, according to Romans 3 and the book of Hebrews. So I just do not see why you ask if I believe the cross is necessary for rebirth.

  42. “…I just do not see why you ask if I believe the cross is necessary for rebirth.”

    Harold, I’m so glad you asked! 🙂

    The Reformed position is that men are SO dead in trespasses and sins that they must be spiritually reborn (e.g. regenerated) in order to believe that Jesus is Lord (Total Depravity). However, as I have mentioned and demonstrated previously, there are numerous New Testament accounts of people directly confessing that Jesus is Lord, or the Son of God, or the Son of David.

    These accounts all preceded the Cross by different lengths of time. Thus, you have people that have not been forgiven of their sins (dead in trespasses and sins) that believe in Jesus! Therefore, the reformed idea of total depravity is incorrect, and to be brief – if part of the system is wrong – it’s all wrong.

  43. Greg,

    I must say that your objection’s reasoning is not based on any Scripture that I know of. I mean specifically that I know of of no Scripture that takes the fact that people were saved before the cross as evidence that the cross did not acomplished their salvation. This is truly encredible to me because Romans 3-4 and Hebrews in particular, along with many other texts, say that Jesus’ work on the cross acomplished the salvation, not only of all those saved after it, but also of all those saved before it. This argument seems suspiciously to be a bit contrived.

    But I will digress to ask you to deal with the text of Ephesians 2 and especially verse 8.

    If my points still stand that there is every grammatical reason to understand fath as a gift there, no grammatical reason to think it is not, and that faith is the closest antecedent to the “that” which is given, why do you not recognize this text? (Also, notice what I have said in my previous post on Ephesians 2.)

    Notice I am not trying to get you to accept my pesumptions, but just to explain the text. I am not constructing big logical arguments outside of the Bible, but am seeking to understand the Scripture for what it says.

    Thanks.

  44. Harold,

    With regard to your argument that seems very specific to Ephesians 2:8, I must admit that, due to my lack of current knowledge of proper English grammar, I am unable to make an informed, grammatical decision regarding this passage. Hence, in all honesty, I’ll have to perform research on what you’re specifically addressing before I can either agree or disagree with your point.

    I believe that I understand what you are saying, but I don’t believe that it harmonizes well, with surrounding passages, other passages, or even logic (as mentioned previously “boasting about having faith”).

    Again, I can’t currently comment on the grammar issue, but I’ll look into it. I think it’s a reasonable point.

    Having said that, regarding my previous point you mentioned, “This argument seems suspiciously to be a bit contrived.”

    Okay…

    You confessed earlier that the cross is necessary for spiritual rebirth, and I heartily agree with you. The Gospel accounts of people believing in Jesus before the cross is problematic for the Reformed position (IMHO) on TD because you have people walking around confessing that Jesus is the Christ (etc) whose sins have NOT yet been atoned for. Thus, they are somehow regenerate (born-again) while SIMULTANEOUSLY dead in trespasses and sins.

    I honestly don’t understand how my argument is either illogical or “contrived.”

    But I digress… Have a blessed day friend.

    Greg

  45. Harold,

    It seems that we’ve come to an impasse on these particular issues [ which is probably an understatement 🙂 ]. I look forward to future discussions on different topics.

    Blessings,
    Greg

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