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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : Finney, a heretic?

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roaringlamb
Member



Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 1519
Santa Cruz California

 Re:

The following statement from Finney's Systematic Theology should alone cause us great concern-

[i]"The doctrine of imputed righteousness, or that Christ’s obedience to the law was accounted as our obedience, is founded on a most false and nonsensical assumption."[/i]

That strikes at the very heart of the Gospel.

Consider also these words from Finney-

"Whenever he sins, he must, for the time being, cease to be holy. This is self-evident. [b]Whenever he sins, he must be condemned; he must incur the penalty of the law of God[/b] ... If it be said that the precept is still binding upon him, but that with respect to the Christian, the penalty is forever set aside, or abrogated, I reply, that to abrogate the penalty is to repeal the precept, for a precept without penalty is no law. It is only counsel or advice. [b]The Christian, therefore, is justified no longer than he obeys, and must be condemned when he disobeys[/b] or Antinomianism is true ... In these respects, then, [b]the sinning Christian and the unconverted sinner are upon precisely the same ground[/b] (p. 46)."

Of course that would render Paul's words of there being no more condemnation in Romans 8 as nothing more than a lie.

As I have said before, Finney had more in common with the philosopher Immanuel Kant than he did with Orthodox Christianity as they both viewed Christ as only a Moral example to be followed, but little more.


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patrick heaviside

 2009/10/1 14:19Profile









 Re:

Yes Finney didn't believe in OSAS but that doesn't make him a heretic. Just because He said a Christian is condemned if he sins (murders or commits adultery for example) and therefore needs to repent does not make him a heretic. Was David condemned when He committed adultery and murder? Yes. Did David need to repent? Yes. The same goes for any Christian. Peter denied the Lord and was in danger of being denied by the Lord. Peter repented. If a Christian sins, they must repent or perish Luke 13:3

Finney did teach Perseverence of the Saints. He said that if a believer sins and falls under condemnation, God will bring him to repentance. He said all those who have been saved will persevere unto the end. If they sin and come under condemnation, they will repent.

I personally disagree with his view of Peresverence of the Saints, but I do agree with his view of conditional security. We are saved from God's wrath as long as we are not doing anything listed in 1 Cor 6:9-10 for example.

Quote:
Of course that would render Paul's words of there being no more condemnation in Romans 8 as nothing more than a lie.



Paul said in Romand 8:1 that those who walk after the Spirit, instead of after the flesh, are not condemned (KJV). Paul never said that we wouldn't be condemned if we walked after the flesh.

In fact, Paul told Christians that if they lived after the flesh they would die - Romans 8:13

Notice how Romans 8:13 is after Romans 8:1

 2009/10/1 14:24
roaringlamb
Member



Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 1519
Santa Cruz California

 Re:

Brother it comes down to one point, did or did not Finney deny that Christ's death paid for the sins of His people APART from their obedience? Or did he(Finney) teach that in order to be justified, one had to be sanctified?

If he taught that, then he is no different than the Judaizers who taught that one had to keep the Law in order to be a Christian. You know the ones Paul tells that they have fallen from grace and might as well emasculate themselves.


_________________
patrick heaviside

 2009/10/1 14:35Profile









 Re:

Finney did not teach that you needed to obey the law (the Torah) to be saved. That is what the Judiazers did and it was condemned in Galatians and refuted by Paul in Romans.

Finney taught that to be saved, a person must repent and believe. To repent is to change your mind about sinning and to believe is to trust in Christ. Even some Calvinists believe in repentance. Not all Calvinists are antinomians.

Quote:
I don't think I misrepresented him at all



You said that Finney said the cross was divine child abuse. That is a blatant lie. I have read everything Finney has written on the atonement (to my knowledge) and he never said anything bad about the atonement at all! He taught vicarious substitution. He said that the blood atonement of Christ was a governmental substitution for the eternal punishment of sinners.

Again, prove that you are not a liar. Give us this quote from Finney where he spoke so negatively and blasphemous about the cross, calling it child abuse? That is a modern Emergent quote. Finney said no such thing.

 2009/10/1 14:50









 Re:

Do you really think that Finney is a heretic because he said that if a believer commits adultery or murder (violates the law of God) that they are condemned until they repent?

Do you think that if a believer commits adultery and murder, they are still going to Heaven? If so, what about 1 Cor. 6:9-10 and 1 John 3:15?

Or do you think that a true believer would not commit adultery and murder? If so, what about King David??

Suppose a believer simply tells an intentional lie. The law says thou shalt not bear false witness. According to Revelation 21:8 all liars will go to hell. Doesn't that mean "all non-Christian liars" will, but Christian liars will go to Heaven?

If a believer does sin or breaks the law of God (commits adultery or murder) don't they need to repent according to Luke 13:3? Or are they forgiven before they repent? If you are forgiven before you repent, was Jesus wrong??

 2009/10/1 15:02
roaringlamb
Member



Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 1519
Santa Cruz California

 Re:

Quote:
Again, prove that you are not a liar.



Did you see that little word "paraphrase"?

I said that because Finney viewed Christ's death and obedience as only sufficient for Himself and having no other meaning for those afterward except for making salvation possible. Thus rendering the Cross an act of "abuse" because it really didn't accomplish anything.

Perhaps I misspoke by using that phraseology and if I have I am sorry.

The bottom line is that we(you and I) will never agree on Finney as we start from two very different views of man. Yours is a more Pelagian view(man is morally able and unstained by the fall), and mine is more Pauline(there are none that do good).

That is the main point of all of this. If man is not able, then He needs more than an example.


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patrick heaviside

 2009/10/1 15:06Profile









 Re:

Quote:
I said that because Finney viewed Christ's [u]death and obedience[/u] as only sufficient for Himself



Again you prove yourself either a liar or just ignorant. Finney didn't say that the death of Christ was only sufficient for Himself! Finney taught that Christ was obligated to obey the law for Himself, but Christ was not obligated to suffer and die since He never violated the law. Therefore His suffering and death were for us! It was a "vicarious" "substitution" according to Finney's own words.

“That Christ's sufferings, and especially his death, were vicarious, has been abundantly shown when treating the subject of atonement. I need not repeat here what I said there. Although Christ owed perfect obedience to the moral law for himself, and could not therefore obey as our substitute, yet since he perfectly obeyed, he owed no suffering to the law or to the Divine government on his own account. He could therefore suffer for us. That is, he could, to answer governmental purposes, substitute his death for the infliction of the penalty of the law on us. He could not perform works of supererogation, but he could endure sufferings of supererogation, in the sense that he did not owe them for himself. The doctrine of substitution, in the sense just named, appears everywhere in both Testaments.” Charles Finney

Now you have falsely accused Finney of saying:

1. The cross was child abuse
2. The death of Christ was only sufficient for himself

You cannot prove either of these false accusations because Finney said no such thing. You are a slanderer, either intentionally or unintentionally. You should do your homework before you falsely accuse a man of God that was used mightily in Revival.

You should just stop your false accusations before you continue putting yourself in a deeper hole and continue to make yourself look ignorant or as a liar.

Quote:
The bottom line is that we(you and I) will never agree on Finney as we start from two very different views of man. Yours is a more Pelagian view(man is morally able and unstained by the fall), and mine is more Pauline(there are none that do good).

That is the main point of all of this. If man is not able, then He needs more than an example.



My view is Pauline, that man is able (1 Cor 10:13) yet with our ability we have chosen to sin (Romans 3:12). Men could obey God but sinners do not obey God.

If men couldn't obey God, sin is not their fault.
If sin is not their fault, they don't deserve punishment for their sin.
If men don't deserve punishment for their sin, they don't need an atonement.
Therefore if men couldn't obey God, they need no atonement

If men could obey God but refuse to do so, sin is their own fault.
If sin is their own fault, they deserve punishment.
If they deserve punishment, they need an atonement.
Therefore if men could obey God but refuse to do so, they need the atonement of Jesus Christ.

Jesus is both our example and our Savior. As our example, He showed us what we are capable of. He said, "come follow me" which implies that we have the ability to imitate his example. As our Savior, He died for our sins so that we don't have to go to hell for our sins. Through His atonement we can have pardon. His atonement saves us from the practice of sin by bringing us to repentance and His atonement saves us from the penalty of sin by providing a subsitute for it.

We need both the example of Christ and the atonement of Christ. The Bible teaches both.



 2009/10/1 15:12
TaylorOtwell
Member



Joined: 2006/6/19
Posts: 927
Arkansas

 Re:

Quote:
SALVATION BY GRACE DOES NOT DISPENSE WITH A RETURN TO FULL OBEDIENCE AS A CONDITION OF SALVATION.

There is a class of scripture texts which have been quoted by antinomians in support of the doctrine, that salvation is not conditionated upon personal holiness, or upon a return to full obedience. It has been found very convenient, by many who were lovers of sin, and never conscious of personal holiness, to adopt the idea of an imputed holiness, contenting themselves with an outward righteousness imputed to them, instead of submitting by faith to have the righteousness of God wrought in them. Unwilling to be personally pious, they betake themselves to an imputed piety.



This is extremely close to the Roman Catholic position on salvation, i.e. the position that we are saved by [i]infused[/i] righteousness and not by [i]imputed[/i] righteousness.

It seems to me that Finney had a confused and muddled view of the distinctions between sanctification and justification, and this is very dangerous ground to walk on.


_________________
Taylor Otwell

 2009/10/1 15:16Profile
roaringlamb
Member



Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 1519
Santa Cruz California

 Re:

Quote:
Do you really think that Finney is a heretic because he said that if a believer commits adultery or murder (violates the law of God) that they are condemned until they repent?



I think Finney is a heretic because he denies justification by faith and the imputation of Christ's righteousness to His people.

Quote:
Do you think that if a believer commits adultery and murder, they are still going to Heaven?



Yes. Because the true believer will be chastened and will not find pleasure in their sin.

But we must not limit this to only outward expressions of sin. Christ made that point in the Sermon on the Mount.

Luke 13:3 is being addressed to those who thought that people died because they were deserving of it, or were not right with God in some way. It is similar to the man in John 9 to which the disciples ask, "who sinned that he was born this way?"

Quote:
are they forgiven before they repent?



Yes. If they have already been truly born again, and if we are talking about repenting of a specific sin, they are forgiven. They were sealed by the Holy Spirit the moment they believed, and He who began a good work in them will complete it.

There are going to be sins that we have not repented of at the moment of our deaths, so we had better hope that Christ's death is sufficient to pay for those.


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patrick heaviside

 2009/10/1 15:17Profile
PaulWest
Member



Joined: 2006/6/28
Posts: 3405
Dallas, Texas

 Re:

Quote:
Again you prove yourself either a liar or just ignorant.

Quote:
You are a slanderer

Actually, it's libel, and not slander.
Quote:
You should just stop your false accusations before you continue putting yourself in a deeper hole and continue to make yourself look ignorant or as a liar.


This is just ugly and shameful. The result and fruit of these stupid conversations. This thread is finished, just like the other "heretic" thread. Do not start anymore of them. Post edifyingly or do not post at all.

Locked.


_________________
Paul Frederick West

 2009/10/1 15:18Profile





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