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 The Falling Away

I have been doing a study on the falling away. I believe we are entering that period of time in the church where we will soon begin to see an even greater falling away than we have already seen.


Temporary Disciples
by Dr. Francis Turretin

XI. If the temporary are sometimes called "disciples of Christ" and "sons of God," "faithful" and "believers," it is either according to opinion (kata doxan) (because they seem to be such in the opinion of others) and out of the judgment of charity (because by a profession of faith and reception of the sacra­ments, they mingle in the public society of the church); but not according to the truth of the thing. Hence Augustine says, "Certain persons are sons of God to God, who are not such to us, and there are certain others, who on account of grace received even temporarily, are called by us sons of God and yet are not such in the sight of God" (Admonition and Grace 9 [20] [FC 2:269; PL 44.928]).

XII. Faith is not true because it perseveres, but it perseveres because it is true. Thus perseverance is not the cause of the verity of faith, but the consequent and the effect—for because it has solidity and a deep root in the heart, on this ac­count it is constant and perpetually endures. As from lightness arises liability to fall, so from solidity arises stability. For although duration does not properly con­stitute the essence of a thing, still it so follows it that from it a judgment can well be formed concerning the truth of a thing a posteriori. Duration is an index of truth, as truth is the principle of duration.

XIII. Nothing is said of the temporary (Mt. 13) which proves that their faith agrees in kind with justifying faith and differs only in degree. Not that "they hear the word, and immediately receive it with joy" because that reception is into the mind, not into the heart (as seed falling upon stony places is received indeed upon the upper surface of the earth, but does not penetrate farther). And the joy with which it is received is not solid and true, arising from a fiducial sense of God's grace, but from perishable things (to wit, the novelty and pleasantness of the doctrine or even the hope of earthly advantage). Not that "the seed springs up" (although it did not come to maturity) because that superficial germination as it takes place in a different kind of ground, so it ought to differ specifically from the intimate and true, which brings forth good fruit. Not that "they do cer­tain good works," as is said of the Israelites that they seek God and are pleased with the knowledge of his ways (Is. 58:2); of the Jews, who exulted in the light of John the Baptist (Jn. 5:35); of Herod, that he did many things after hearing him (Mk. 6:20). These are no other than external good works (as to the substance of a work and moral virtue), but not truly such as to the truth of the thing and the manner according to which they ought to be done.

XIV. Heb. 6:4-6 does not prove that the apostates were true believers and that their faith was the same in kind as justifying faith. (1) The apostle speaks hypo-thetically, not absolutely; for to parapesontas is the same as if he had said "if they shall fall away" (ean parapesosi). From the hypothetical to the absolute the conse­quence does not hold good, unless the condition be posited. Nor did the apostle threaten to no purpose because by such conditional threatenings God prevents the renewed from falling, frightening them by the fickleness of the apostate and exciting them to the desire of perseverance. And although the condition on God's part and as to the event is impossible, it would be very possible on the part of man left to himself. (2) Whatever is ascribed to them can be predicated of the unrenewed and reprobate, who can "be made partakers of the Holy Spirit" (if not as to the fundamental and saving gifts of conversion and consolation, still as to the initial gifts of illumination and conviction or even as to extraordinary, mirac­ulous and ministerial gifts). They can be illuminated and have a knowledge of the truth, if not a practical and consoling, yet a theoretical and constraining. They can "taste the good word of God" with an outward and labial, but not an inner and radical taste. They can "taste the powers of the world to come," not so much by hope and joy (which are the first fruits of heavenly glory) as with respect to miracles (which are often termed powers and which were usually per­formed in the primitive church, which is called the future age, "the world to come" [as in Heb. 2:5] because it was such in the time of the fathers of the Old Testament). They can "taste the heavenly gift" as to a participation of faith, if not saving, still true in its kind and which could be obtained only from heaven. (3) These things are ascribed to them rather sacramentally and extrinsically (as to a profession of the truth and the reception of baptism), than spiritually and in­ternally (as to the reception of faith without hypocrisy [anypokritou], which is the gift without repentance [ametameleton] of the elect).

XV. Although the faith of the temporary is true in its own order because it truly receives the seed with joy and is not feigned by those who thus believe, who not only think they believe, but really and truly believe (hence they are even said "to believe," ]n. 2:23; Lk. 8:13), still it is not a true and living justifying faith, in which sense it is even called hypocritical because it is emulous of the faith of the elect and has an external resemblance to it (although destitute of its truth); and so great is its similarity to it often that a greater is not seen between an image and its prototype. Hence not only others who see them are easily deceived by them, but the believers themselves also are deceived and impose upon them­selves; not feigning, but believing that they are truly believers (God alone, who searches the innermost recesses of the heart, knowing the truth). Still it is cer­tain that there is a manifold and most essential difference (as was said before) which shows that they mutually differ not only in degree or duration, but in very kind and nature.

http://www.apuritansmind.com/FrancisTurretin/francisturretintemporarydisciples.htm


 2008/10/20 8:16
sojourner7
Member



Joined: 2007/6/27
Posts: 1573
Omaha, NE

 Re: The Falling Away

Jesus has many fair-weather friends; but few
devoted disciples who are willing to follow
and serve Their Master no matter what the
cost !!


_________________
Martin G. Smith

 2008/10/20 17:25Profile
rowdy2
Member



Joined: 2007/1/21
Posts: 528
Southern USA

 Re: The Falling Away

Reply to Rebecca_L Hello,and this is my understanding on the matter of "falling away".
As a Christian Jesus is Lord of my life, not me. But that was not always the case.

Before I was born again spiritually the son of perdition had been doing his own will pretending to be lord. I even though I was still under the curse,"death". I acted as my own lord. I thought I knew right from wrong. I was eating from the tree of good and evil and deciding what was good and what was evil through my own spiritually blind eyes. I was pretending to be lord and had not been consumed by the coming of my true Lord, Christ Jesus.

Perdition means he (us) is carnal and sentenced to death, when you see that then you will have spiritual eyes to see that your flesh mind has been deceiving you. The falling away of spiritual blindness reveals the first man, the son of perdition, the first you, the son not under grace but under the sentence of death by Holy God for pretending to be lord and not honoring our true Lord Who bought us all on the cross.

We all served the beast (flesh) until the spiritual man, the second man that has eternal life by grace (has been begotten) of our Heavenly Father Who quickens us and opens our spiritual eyes and we see ourselves as we are and we cry Woe is me!

The falling away is the exposing the man of perdition in us. The spirit of antichrist in us is exposed as our spiritual eyes are opened. The son of perdition is the man of flesh, the first man(666) who has the spirit of antichrist, the rebellious natural man who gets his power from the beast [flesh man] is consumed by us being reconciled by the coming of Christ Jesus to each one of us. The spiritual man is begotten of God, The Holy Spirit and not of the flesh of your earthly father and mother.

If Christ Jesus has not come to you and you have not received Him then you are still lost without a Holy Shepard and under the guidance of and doing the will of your flesh. The first man born of a woman is carnal and does not have eternal life and is still subject to death. The son of perdition is that flesh man or the first man. As long the son sentenced to death, or perdition, is still in control you mind the things of the flesh and not the things of the spirit because the second man, the man of the spirit has not been born.

To receive your spiritual birthright you must ask your Heavenly Father for it, but don't ask amiss and trade your spiritual birth right for earthly things to waste on the flesh.

Eddie


_________________
Eddie

 2008/10/20 18:05Profile









 Re:



I know we can know them by thier fruits but that we just can't root them up because we could end up destroying the true wheat. I am interested in being better able to discern more clearly the wheat from the tares. I have some understanding of this but facing some serious issues in my church right now this is very heavily on my mind.



Matthew 7:15-21

15Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

16Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?

17Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.

18A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.

19Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

20Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.

21Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

 2008/10/20 18:17
rowdy2
Member



Joined: 2007/1/21
Posts: 528
Southern USA

 Re:

Rebecca_L We are taught not to contend with them.

2 Peter 2

1. But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
2. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.
3. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.
4. For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment;
5. And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly;
6. And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly;
7. And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked:
8. (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;)
9. The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:
10. But chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government. Presumptuous are they, selfwilled, they are not afraid to speak evil of dignities.
11. Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not railing accusation against them before the Lord.
12. But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption;
13. And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you;
14. Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children:
15. Which have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness;
16. But was rebuked for his iniquity: the dumb ass speaking with man's voice forbad the madness of the prophet.
17. These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever.
18. For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error.
19. While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage.
20. For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.
21. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.
22. But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, the dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.

Eddie


_________________
Eddie

 2008/10/20 18:25Profile









 Re:

Here's an article I found by Zac Poonen from brother Patrick's site:

[url=http://www.obeyjesus.net/index2.php?option=com_content&do_pdf=1&id=354]Zac Poonen - WARNINGS TO THE CHURCH FOR THE LAST DAYS[/url]

This is really interesting about the "daily sacrifice" being put to an end. This is teaching I have never heard before.


 2008/10/20 19:28
stromboli
Member



Joined: 2008/7/13
Posts: 44


 Re:

The falling away has already occured, just look around.

 2008/10/20 20:06Profile









 Re:

Quote:

stromboli wrote:
The falling away has already occured, just look around.



Sometimes I think we in America have become desensitized or does it get much worse than this?

 2008/10/20 20:39
stromboli
Member



Joined: 2008/7/13
Posts: 44


 Re:

Quote:

Rebecca_L wrote:
Quote:

stromboli wrote:
The falling away has already occured, just look around.



Sometimes I think we in America have become desensitized or does it get much worse than this?

CAN YOU EXPLAIN?

 2008/10/20 21:10Profile









 Re:

Quote:

stromboli wrote:
Quote:

Rebecca_L wrote:
Quote:

stromboli wrote:
The falling away has already occured, just look around.



Sometimes I think we in America have become desensitized or does it get much worse than this?

CAN YOU EXPLAIN?



We'll most christians will tell you that you are just too critical that it's really not as bad as it appears to be ect..But like you said I believe we are in the falling away.

This is a really good article by Zac Poonen, please read this:

http://www.obeyjesus.net/index2.php?option=com_content&do_pdf=1&id=354



 2008/10/20 21:19





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