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Thread: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

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    The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    “If the righteous is scarcely saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?”

    What is your understanding of being "scarcely" saved? It certainly implies it is not easy or simple. The notes say the righteous are saved in the midst of suffering. This is in-line with Christ's statement in Matthew 24:13 "But the one who endures to the end will be saved."

    The ones who persevere are the same ones who are saved—not the ones whose love grows cold (24:12). This does not suggest that our perseverance secures our salvation. Scripture everywhere teaches precisely the opposite: God, as part of his saving work, secures our perseverance. True believers “are being guarded through faith for a salvation” (1 Pet. 1:5). The guarantee of our perseverance is built into the New Covenant promise. God says: “I will put the fear of me in their hearts, that they may not turn from me” (Jer. 32:40). Those who do fall away from Christ give conclusive proof that they were never truly believers to begin with (1 John 2:19). To say that God secures our perseverance is not to say that we are passive in the process, however. He keeps us “through faith” (1 Pet. 1:5)—our faith. Scripture sometimes calls us to hold fast to our faith (Heb. 10:23; Rev. 3:11) or warns us against falling away (Heb. 10:26–29). Such admonitions do not negate the many promises that true believers will persevere (John 10:28–29; Rom. 8:38–39; 1 Cor. 1:8–9; Phil. 1:6). Rather, the warnings and pleas are among the means God uses to secure our perseverance in the faith. Notice that the warnings and the promises often appear side by side. For example, when Jude urges believers, “keep yourselves in the love of God” (Jude 21), he immediately points them to God, “who is able to keep you from stumbling” (Jude 24).

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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    The NAS reads - And if it is with DIFFICULTY that the righteous is saved, what will become of the GODLESS MAN and the sinner? Difficulty (3433) (molis from molos = toil, labor pains) is an adverb which means hardly, barely, with difficulty, scarcely, not easily. If the righteous need disciplinary judgments, how much more will the unrighteous suffer the wrath of God whose offer of righteousness they have rejected? Believers "scarcely" saved reveals the difficulty with which believers are brought to the end of their faith, the salvation of the soul through the fires of suffering, divine purging, and God-ordained discipline. Peter could be contrasting the believer's refining "judgment" of God versus the ungodly person's "judicial judgment," and will face the unquenchable wrath of God. This fits perfectly into the context of 1 Peter 4 where the apostle was relating the earthly suffering of believers to the judgment that must begin in the house of God - and end with unbelievers.

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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    “If the righteous is scarcely saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?”

    What is your understanding of being "scarcely" saved? It certainly implies it is not easy or simple. The notes say the righteous are saved in the midst of suffering. This is in-line with Christ's statement in Matthew 24:13 "But the one who endures to the end will be saved."

    The ones who persevere are the same ones who are saved—not the ones whose love grows cold (24:12). This does not suggest that our perseverance secures our salvation. Scripture everywhere teaches precisely the opposite: God, as part of his saving work, secures our perseverance. True believers “are being guarded through faith for a salvation” (1 Pet. 1:5). The guarantee of our perseverance is built into the New Covenant promise. God says: “I will put the fear of me in their hearts, that they may not turn from me” (Jer. 32:40). Those who do fall away from Christ give conclusive proof that they were never truly believers to begin with (1 John 2:19). To say that God secures our perseverance is not to say that we are passive in the process, however. He keeps us “through faith” (1 Pet. 1:5)—our faith. Scripture sometimes calls us to hold fast to our faith (Heb. 10:23; Rev. 3:11) or warns us against falling away (Heb. 10:26–29). Such admonitions do not negate the many promises that true believers will persevere (John 10:28–29; Rom. 8:38–39; 1 Cor. 1:8–9; Phil. 1:6). Rather, the warnings and pleas are among the means God uses to secure our perseverance in the faith. Notice that the warnings and the promises often appear side by side. For example, when Jude urges believers, “keep yourselves in the love of God” (Jude 21), he immediately points them to God, “who is able to keep you from stumbling” (Jude 24).

    Unwittingly, no doubt, you have complicated the matter. The verses you chose all show salvation by some effort or another. You can add Philippians 2:12 to the list, and there are more verses that show a salvation by human effort. This is very different from the salvation NOT by works in Titus 3:5.

    How shall we reconcile this dilemma without voiding a single scripture?

    In past threads I have shown the need to define "salvation" in every case. Now it is up to you, for if you don't you will shortly overthrow "salvation as a free gift", devoid of man's works.

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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    The righteous are chosen from among those of the nations who did not know Christ. They will be saved (as we all are) by God's mercy.
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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    Quote Originally Posted by mailmandan View Post
    The NAS reads - And if it is with DIFFICULTY that the righteous is saved, what will become of the GODLESS MAN and the sinner? Difficulty (3433) (molis from molos = toil, labor pains) is an adverb which means hardly, barely, with difficulty, scarcely, not easily. If the righteous need disciplinary judgments, how much more will the unrighteous suffer the wrath of God whose offer of righteousness they have rejected? Believers "scarcely" saved reveals the difficulty with which believers are brought to the end of their faith, the salvation of the soul through the fires of suffering, divine purging, and God-ordained discipline. Peter could be contrasting the believer's refining "judgment" of God versus the ungodly person's "judicial judgment," and will face the unquenchable wrath of God. This fits perfectly into the context of 1 Peter 4 where the apostle was relating the earthly suffering of believers to the judgment that must begin in the house of God - and end with unbelievers.
    One must finish the idea....then WHERE will the ungodly appear? This ia about the condition of a destiny. God will deem some men righteous by their deeds...without having known Christ.


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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    Quote Originally Posted by Walls View Post
    Unwittingly, no doubt, you have complicated the matter. The verses you chose all show salvation by some effort or another. You can add Philippians 2:12 to the list, and there are more verses that show a salvation by human effort. This is very different from the salvation NOT by works in Titus 3:5.

    How shall we reconcile this dilemma without voiding a single scripture?

    In past threads I have shown the need to define "salvation" in every case. Now it is up to you, for if you don't you will shortly overthrow "salvation as a free gift", devoid of man's works.
    How about this….Salvation is a gift from God that requires human effort on our part. The Holy Spirit can and will give us the needed strength and power if we trust in him. The problem, at least for me, is that I get in the way of that. I have my agenda and God's has His agenda. We're not always on the same page which what causes separation and internal conflict.
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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    Quote Originally Posted by Walls View Post
    Unwittingly, no doubt, you have complicated the matter. The verses you chose all show salvation by some effort or another. You can add Philippians 2:12 to the list, and there are more verses that show a salvation by human effort. This is very different from the salvation NOT by works in Titus 3:5.

    How shall we reconcile this dilemma without voiding a single scripture?

    In past threads I have shown the need to define "salvation" in every case. Now it is up to you, for if you don't you will shortly overthrow "salvation as a free gift", devoid of man's works.

    One cannot work their way into the Spirit..Christ is entered into by faith. Christ is our salvation and perfection right this minute. We enter into life (or not) this very day. We walk as Jesus walked today (or not). But judgment day is something entirely different. ALL men will be judged by what they have DONE....and not what they have believed. Faith without works is dead.

    God will save those who did His will whether they call themselves Christians or not. It is immaterial....we do not control our own salvation.
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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    Quote Originally Posted by episkopos View Post
    One cannot work their way into the Spirit..Christ is entered into by faith. Christ is our salvation and perfection right this minute. We enter into life (or not) this very day. We walk as Jesus walked today (or not). But judgment day is something entirely different. ALL men will be judged by what they have DONE....and not what they have believed. Faith without works is dead.

    God will save those who did His will whether they call themselves Christians or not. It is immaterial....we do not control our own salvation.
    I also believe we do not control our own salvation. I had little to do with being saved, but that's my belief based on my personal experience. The uncertainty for me comes after being saved. That is where I believe we have choices. The Holy Spirit can nudge me in a direction but I can also choose to ignore that nudge and act on self-will. The result of that never ends well and over time, through the sanctification process, the tendency to seek God's will over my own becomes more natural. And that is where human effort comes into play. I have to practice these principles and that requires effort.
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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    How about this….Salvation is a gift from God that requires human effort on our part.
    Thank you for your answer. I appreciate your dilemma. But I have to say that this is a contradiction. It is either a "gift", in which case nothing was required from you, or it was an effort, in which case you earned it. The two are mutually exclusive.

    The Holy Spirit can and will give us the needed strength and power if we trust in him.
    I think I know what you mean, but this statement implies that you dictate to the Holy Spirit. My wife is facing a knee replacement. I would much prefer a healing from our Lord Jesus to avoid the pain and rehab. But no amount of trusting the Holy Spirit will get my wife miraculously healed. It will completely depend on His will, not my trusting.

    The problem, at least for me, is that I get in the way of that. I have my agenda and God's has His agenda. We're not always on the same page which what causes separation and internal conflict.
    On this we can fully agree. I should know better but I still fall in this matter.

    But back to the theme of the thread. It would do us all good to examine the statement carefully. The bible has stated that none are righteous (Rom.3:10). That is why salvation is a free gift. None can earn it. So who then are the already "righteous" who are "scarcely" saved? See the problem?

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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    Quote Originally Posted by episkopos View Post
    One cannot work their way into the Spirit..Christ is entered into by faith. Christ is our salvation and perfection right this minute. We enter into life (or not) this very day. We walk as Jesus walked today (or not). But judgment day is something entirely different. ALL men will be judged by what they have DONE....and not what they have believed. Faith without works is dead.

    God will save those who did His will whether they call themselves Christians or not. It is immaterial....we do not control our own salvation.
    Judgement is not in view in this thread. Salvation is.

    But even if it was, your two conclusions are mutually exclusive. In the first you claim salvation by mere faith. We believe - and are transported into Christ like going through a door without even walking. In the second you claim that massive effort is required. To do God's will is almost beyond the spectrum of human endeavor. Has any Christian hated their family yet? (Lk.14:26). This command applies to those who have a close, loving family as well.

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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    I also believe we do not control our own salvation.
    But this is just the problem. Scripture says in Philippians 2:12;
    "Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling."

    Shall we scratch this verses from scripture?

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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    Quote Originally Posted by Walls View Post
    Judgement is not in view in this thread. Salvation is.

    But even if it was, your two conclusions are mutually exclusive. In the first you claim salvation by mere faith. We believe - and are transported into Christ like going through a door without even walking. In the second you claim that massive effort is required. To do God's will is almost beyond the spectrum of human endeavor. Has any Christian hated their family yet? (Lk.14:26). This command applies to those who have a close, loving family as well.
    The way in Christ is indeed narrow. But He is our salvation today.
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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    Quote Originally Posted by Walls View Post
    Thank you for your answer. I appreciate your dilemma. But I have to say that this is a contradiction. It is either a "gift", in which case nothing was required from you, or it was an effort, in which case you earned it. The two are mutually exclusive.
    It doesn't have to be mutually exclusive. The initial gift did not require human effort but the maintenance of that gift does. If someone bought me a new car I would still have to maintain or it would cease to run.


    I think I know what you mean, but this statement implies that you dictate to the Holy Spirit. My wife is facing a knee replacement. I would much prefer a healing from our Lord Jesus to avoid the pain and rehab. But no amount of trusting the Holy Spirit will get my wife miraculously healed. It will completely depend on His will, not my trusting.
    That's not what I meant. Trusting in Spirit means listening and obeying. I don't always do the latter. I will at times purposely ignore the nudge of the Spirit or fight it.

    But back to the theme of the thread. It would do us all good to examine the statement carefully. The bible has stated that none are righteous (Rom.3:10). That is why salvation is a free gift. None can earn it. So who then are the already "righteous" who are "scarcely" saved? See the problem?
    If I knew the answer to that question I would't have started the thread.
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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post

    ....

    If I knew the answer to that question I would't have started the thread.
    And so we return to my original statement. We have to define "salvation" in every case. If we don't, for instance, then salvation is neither a gift nor a matter of our work. It is just a matter of child-bearing (1st Tim.2:15). No! "Salvation" is to be a restored to the original purpose that God had with man. It was;
    1. That man be in His image and likeness
    2. That man subdue and rule the earth and its environs of sea and sky righteously
    3. That man fence about and bring to order a Garden where God can meet with man
    4. That man be the bride of His Son Jesus
    5. That man eat from the Tree of Life
    6. That man enjoy his life to the fullest

    That man fell away and came short of all of these is well known and obvious. So God started a process whereby He would restore any man who wanted to be restored. This process is the process of "Saving" a man from the consequences of NOT attaining to the above points. There is one thing that definitely annuls man's ability to ANY of the above. It is DEATH. A dead man CANNOT;
    1. be in God's image and likeness - for God is Life
    2. subdue and rule - for a dead man is helpless. He cannot even stand
    3. bring anything to order - for his body does not function
    4. be the Bride of Christ - for she must be "meet" for Him (like Him, or up to His standard)
    5. eat of anything - rather he is eaten by worms
    6. enjoy life - because he has none to enjoy

    And the cause of this death is sin (Rom.6:23). So if God wants to save a man His first actions must be to deal with sin. This our Lord Jesus does by becoming a man, living without sin (otherwise He could only die for Himself), and voluntarily dying for other men's sins. This He does.

    But now a problem arises. The Substitute for sins is dead Himself. Of what use is that? So the Substitute is raised to life again in resurrection by God. Now four things have been accomplished.
    1. We have a man who is totally righteous - having never sinned
    2. Sins have been judicially dealt with
    3. This Man has resurrection life - a life that conquers death
    4. All three have been added to the Godhead

    Now God offers this package of established righteousness, sins put away judicially, resurrection life and the Person and Character of Jesus Christ to all men. If a man voluntarily takes this package, he is SAVED from the effects of sin and death. As God ACCOMPLISHED it and GAVE it, IT IS FREE GIFT. But the journey to full restoration is only beginning. So the man is invited to COOPERATE with God in achieving the rest of the six points He made man for. They are;
    1. To be transformed back to the image and likeness of God after all the damage that has been done
    2. To be trained to be a king, a ruler of this earth
    3. To build and bring to order the Church, the present "Garden of Fellowship" with God
    4. To fall in love with, and have an intimate relationship with, Jesus Christ his Bridegroom
    5. To daily eat of the Tree of Life in order to have life and be constantly fed with the source of life
    6. To enjoy this life to the fullest when all the above is accomplished (for while there are unaccomplished things it cannot be enjoyed)

    To accomplish these points immediately above, man NEEDS TO COOPERATE WITH GOD. He needs to set aside his wishes and passions to move forward in this transformation process. Thus, in the above points a man must provide EFFORT. This EFFORT is made of;
    1. Obedience to God no matter what
    2. Setting aside the fallen flesh because it is constantly the enemy of EFFORT for God (Lk.14:27; Gal.5:17)
    3. Denying the desires of the soul, that is, putting its desires to death (Matt.10:39, 16:25, etc. - the word "life" is the same as "soul". It can be translated "soul-life")

    If a man engages in the above three points diligently and even violently (to himself - Matt.11:12), he is able to apply the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit to change himself from the effects of fallenness to a man who will accomplish God's purposes listed in the first list above. Thus HE IS SAVED FROM HIS FALLENNESS AND INABILITY TO MEET GOD'S REQUIREMENTS.

    Now, instead of me giving an exegesis on the whole New Testament, I propose an exercise. Why not write down (or cut and paste) every verses containing the word "save", "saved" and "salvation" in the New Testament and see if you can find which category it falls into - God's free gift or man's effort coupled with God's power to be restored to God's original purpose. Example; I mentioned 1st Timothy 2:15 above.
    "Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety."

    In what way is a woman saved by childbearing? Is it a free gift of God to put away sin and death, or is it part of her training and transformation to be a ruler of this earth, and manager of God's affairs one day?

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    Re: The righteous are scarcely saved - 1 Peter 4:18

    In the previous verse it talks about Eve being the deceived and the transgressor, not Adam. Adam gets a pass according to Paul.

    My notes: Take it for what it's worth:

    That Paul does not have Eve in mind here is clear because the verb translated “will be saved” is future, and he also uses the plural pronoun “they.” He is talking about women after Eve. will be saved. The Greek word can also mean “to rescue,” “to preserve safe and unharmed,” “to heal,” or “to deliver from.” It appears several times in the NT without reference to spiritual salvation (cf. Matt. 8:25; 9:21–22; 24:22; 27:40, 42, 49; 2 Tim. 4:18). Paul is not advocating that women are eternally saved from sin through childbearing or that they maintain their salvation by having babies, both of which would be clear contradictions of the NT teaching of salvation by grace alone through faith alone (Rom. 3:19–20) sustained forever (Rom. 8:31–39). Paul is teaching that even though a woman bears the stigma of being the initial instrument who led the race into sin, it is women through childbearing who may be preserved or freed from that stigma by raising a generation of godly children (cf. 1 Tim. 5:10). through childbearing. Because mothers have a unique bond and intimacy with their children, and spend far more time with them than do fathers, they have far greater influence in their lives and thus a unique responsibility and opportunity for rearing godly children. While a woman may have led the human race into sin, women have the privilege of leading many out of sin to godliness. Paul is speaking in general terms; God does not want all women to be married (1 Cor. 7:25–40), let alone bear children. if they continue in faith and love and holiness, with self-control. The godly appearance, demeanor, and behavior commanded of believing women in the church (1 Tim. 2:9–12) is motivated by the promise of deliverance from any inferior status and the joy of raising godly children.
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