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  • When is spirituality eternal life?

    There is a lot of confusion here about precisely what Salvation is! Is it just receiving Christ's life, or is it also doing works to validate the receiving of that life?

    I think we can all agree that we receive new spiritual life from Christ, and that we are also to do good works, validating our Christianity as authentic. But it is an entirely other thing to say that we are never really "Saved," and never really possess "Eternal Life" until after death. I think we are told, in Scriptures, that the spiritual life we experience can actually constitute Eternal Life possessed now, and not only held ttentatively.

    I would agree with those who believe that spiritual life can be experienced without actually possessing Eternal Life. Judas, for example, followed Jesus, obeyed his word, and produced miracles. But he did not possess Eternal Life, obviously.

    So we can experience Christ's spirituality, we can obey his word, and we can produce spiritual gifts. But this does not constitute Eternal Life in all cases. So what makes the experience of Christ's spirituality "eternal?"

    My belief is that the supreme and critical difference between the experience of spiritual life and the eternal possession of Eternal Life is the element of receiving *Christ's character." If we receive spirituality from him it is equally important to receive his *likeness.*

    This is the whole essence of the OT concept of "regeneration." In the Hope of Israel, the "Regeneration" has to do with the rebirth of Israel from a fallen State into a Reborn, spiritual State. For the individual that meant, according to Jesus, that Nicodemus should not only follow Christ as teacher, but also be remade into his image.

    John 3.13 No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven—the Son of Man. 14 Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15 that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.”

    If we receive the revelation of Christian Salvation we will note that it is not just a list of instructions to do things, but it is also a profound spirituality that is entirely different from our own. It involves *Christ's character," suggesting that if we obey his word we must also be *like him.*

    This is, I believe, the essence of Christian Salvation, and the only means to actually possess Eternal Life now. We must have Christ reproduce his character within us, once we've received the revelation of what that is. Then we may not only do what he tells us to do, but we may be also able to do it in the likeness which which he wants us to do it.

    1 John 3.2 Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. 3 All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure.

    Spiritual life can be experienced, and Christ's character imitated. But to be truly Saved, and to have Eternal Life, requires that we not just imitate Christ--we must also become *like him!*

  • #2
    Originally posted by randyk View Post
    There is a lot of confusion here about precisely what Salvation is! Is it just receiving Christ's life, or is it also doing works to validate the receiving of that life?

    I think we can all agree that we receive new spiritual life from Christ, and that we are also to do good works, validating our Christianity as authentic. But it is an entirely other thing to say that we are never really "Saved," and never really possess "Eternal Life" until after death. I think we are told, in Scriptures, that the spiritual life we experience can actually constitute Eternal Life possessed now, and not only held ttentatively.

    I would agree with those who believe that spiritual life can be experienced without actually possessing Eternal Life. Judas, for example, followed Jesus, obeyed his word, and produced miracles. But he did not possess Eternal Life, obviously.

    So we can experience Christ's spirituality, we can obey his word, and we can produce spiritual gifts. But this does not constitute Eternal Life in all cases. So what makes the experience of Christ's spirituality "eternal?"

    My belief is that the supreme and critical difference between the experience of spiritual life and the eternal possession of Eternal Life is the element of receiving *Christ's character." If we receive spirituality from him it is equally important to receive his *likeness.*

    This is the whole essence of the OT concept of "regeneration." In the Hope of Israel, the "Regeneration" has to do with the rebirth of Israel from a fallen State into a Reborn, spiritual State. For the individual that meant, according to Jesus, that Nicodemus should not only follow Christ as teacher, but also be remade into his image.

    John 3.13 No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven—the Son of Man. 14 Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15 that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.”

    If we receive the revelation of Christian Salvation we will note that it is not just a list of instructions to do things, but it is also a profound spirituality that is entirely different from our own. It involves *Christ's character," suggesting that if we obey his word we must also be *like him.*

    This is, I believe, the essence of Christian Salvation, and the only means to actually possess Eternal Life now. We must have Christ reproduce his character within us, once we've received the revelation of what that is. Then we may not only do what he tells us to do, but we may be also able to do it in the likeness which which he wants us to do it.

    1 John 3.2 Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. 3 All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure.

    Spiritual life can be experienced, and Christ's character imitated. But to be truly Saved, and to have Eternal Life, requires that we not just imitate Christ--we must also become *like him!*
    We do not have ETERNAL LIFE.

    If we come to GOD through Jesus AND are found worthy we can receive from Him Immortal Life.

    We can Live WITH HIM (Jesus) in Immortality.

    Eternal is what God is.

    Comment


    • #3
      Somebody liked this, I left an important word out.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Jp101 View Post

        We do not have ETERNAL LIFE.

        If we come to GOD through Jesus AND are found worthy we can receive from Him Immortal Life.

        We can Live WITH HIM (Jesus) in Immortality.

        Eternal is what God is.
        I don't agree, as I said. The Scriptures indicate we presently *possess it.* We don't just get it in the future. Having eternal life is a matter of possessing Christ's spirituality today--not tomorrow. We are judged tomorrow by what we have and do today. To do and to be like Jesus we must have his spirituality now.

        The world does good too. Why are they cursed? It is because their idea of good is not the same as God's idea of good. True good, for God, is what His Son represented. If we do what Christ said to do, we can truly do good.

        But even then many people merely imitate the works Christ said to do. Or they do part of it--the deed--without exhibiting the character that Christ indicated had to be a part of it.

        If you want salvation, you must have it today. And you must be more than an imitator of it--you must *be* it. You must have Christ's character and ensure that the good you do is what his word tells you to do. To know what this is you must know what his word is, and you must recognize that it requires you be like him now. Otherwise, you will be judged.

        You must know what Christ's spirituality is now, and you must know what his character is now. If so, then you can be saved now. You simply let him live at the center of your being, through the Spirit which he promised for all who obey his word.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by randyk View Post

          I don't agree, as I said. The Scriptures indicate we presently *possess it.* We don't just get it in the future. Having eternal life is a matter of possessing Christ's spirituality today--not tomorrow. We are judged tomorrow by what we have and do today. To do and to be like Jesus we must have his spirituality now.

          The world does good too. Why are they cursed? It is because their idea of good is not the same as God's idea of good. True good, for God, is what His Son represented. If we do what Christ said to do, we can truly do good.

          But even then many people merely imitate the works Christ said to do. Or they do part of it--the deed--without exhibiting the character that Christ indicated had to be a part of it.

          If you want salvation, you must have it today. And you must be more than an imitator of it--you must *be* it. You must have Christ's character and ensure that the good you do is what his word tells you to do. To know what this is you must know what his word is, and you must recognize that it requires you be like him now. Otherwise, you will be judged.

          You must know what Christ's spirituality is now, and you must know what his character is now. If so, then you can be saved now. You simply let him live at the center of your being, through the Spirit which he promised for all who obey his word.
          It is the use of the words.

          You can not have ETERNAL LIFE, if you did not exist from eternity.

          You are claiming you will become as as God.

          The Bible states the GOD was ABOVE JESUS Living in Unapproachable Light.

          To make it simple it is you use of the word Eternal.

          No Human will ever Eternal.

          Eternal is GOD ALONE.

          You can become Everlasting, Immortal,

          You can never become Eternal.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by randyk View Post

            I don't agree, as I said. The Scriptures indicate we presently *possess it.* We don't just get it in the future. Having eternal life is a matter of possessing Christ's spirituality today--not tomorrow. We are judged tomorrow by what we have and do today. To do and to be like Jesus we must have his spirituality now.

            The world does good too. Why are they cursed? It is because their idea of good is not the same as God's idea of good. True good, for God, is what His Son represented. If we do what Christ said to do, we can truly do good.

            But even then many people merely imitate the works Christ said to do. Or they do part of it--the deed--without exhibiting the character that Christ indicated had to be a part of it.

            If you want salvation, you must have it today. And you must be more than an imitator of it--you must *be* it. You must have Christ's character and ensure that the good you do is what his word tells you to do. To know what this is you must know what his word is, and you must recognize that it requires you be like him now. Otherwise, you will be judged.

            You must know what Christ's spirituality is now, and you must know what his character is now. If so, then you can be saved now. You simply let him live at the center of your being, through the Spirit which he promised for all who obey his word.
            =========================
            We can have righteousness...today. ......That gets us ......eternal salvation .......tomorrow.

            We can be righteous but only God can give eternal salvation after His judgement which comes after physical death.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Jp101 View Post

              It is the use of the words.

              You can not have ETERNAL LIFE, if you did not exist from eternity.

              You are claiming you will become as as God.

              The Bible states the GOD was ABOVE JESUS Living in Unapproachable Light.

              To make it simple it is you use of the word Eternal.

              No Human will ever Eternal.

              Eternal is GOD ALONE.

              You can become Everlasting, Immortal,

              You can never become Eternal.
              That doesn't follow. You are defining "eternal" in your own way, and in a way I don't agree with. God is eternal, but He is also able to produce revelations of Himself within time. That means that He can Himself appear in a form that has a beginning in time, even thought the origin of this revelation is from eternity.

              This kind of philosophical argument is used against the Trinity. But it doesn't hold water for the simple reason that we cannot deny what we ourselves cannot experience. Since, as you say, we're not eternal, we cannot possibly comprehend what an eternal Being can do.

              I believe the eternal God could and did produce a revelation of Himself in time--a revelation that had a beginning in time. And yet that revelation issued from eternity. That revelation was the Word become flesh, aka Jesus.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by preston39 View Post

                =========================
                We can have righteousness...today. ......That gets us ......eternal salvation .......tomorrow.

                We can be righteous but only God can give eternal salvation after His judgement which comes after physical death.
                You cannot be assured of eternity tomorrow if you don't already have righteousness today. And if we have righteousness today, that merits eternity tomorrow, then our eternal future actually begins today.

                We already have eternal life. That's what Jesus said. He is he is the way, truth, and the life. If we already possess his spiritual life and character, we have eternal life.

                The whole purpose for Jesus' death was so that the spiritual life Israel already had could be made eternal. Under the Law, they were blessed, but they could not overcome the curse and condemnation of sin.

                So Jesus rendered spiritual life "eternal life" when he died on the cross, and gave it to all who wanted it and were willing to pay the price to have it.

                The price for having this life is giving up our own life for his. There must be no other God than the one God. We must yield our lives over to Christ in service, to serve the spirituality that he gives us.

                Then we are assured of eternal life. There is nothing more we can do than live in fellowship with him, deferring to him in all things. When we let him live at the center of our beings, we properly put him on the throne of our lives, where he is able to rule as our savior from sin and death.

                If we don't have eternal life now, it is because we have not yet placed him at the core of our being. And if we put him at the core of our being we generate in our lives a new character like his, doing the good things that he does. That is the assurance of our salvation, that we are like him.

                1 John 3.2 Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. 3 All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure.
                Last edited by randyk; Mar 25th 2020, 05:34 AM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by randyk View Post

                  That doesn't follow. You are defining "eternal" in your own way, and in a way I don't agree with. God is eternal, but He is also able to produce revelations of Himself within time. That means that He can Himself appear in a form that has a beginning in time, even thought the origin of this revelation is from eternity.

                  This kind of philosophical argument is used against the Trinity. But it doesn't hold water for the simple reason that we cannot deny what we ourselves cannot experience. Since, as you say, we're not eternal, we cannot possibly comprehend what an eternal Being can do.

                  I believe the eternal God could and did produce a revelation of Himself in time--a revelation that had a beginning in time. And yet that revelation issued from eternity. That revelation was the Word become flesh, aka Jesus.
                  I think what Jp101 is getting at is to make a distinction between God (who had no beginning and has no end), and us who did have a beginning. God is eternal. We can be immortal (never having an end), but we did have a beginning. I think that is the distinction JP is trying to make.

                  The point you are making here is valid. Jesus, who is eternal (had no beginning and no end) can manifest Himself in time as a human that had a beginning and still be the eternal God.

                  I hope this adds clarification to the conversation.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by randyk View Post

                    You cannot be assured of eternity tomorrow if you don't already have righteousness today. And if we have righteousness today, that merits eternity tomorrow, then our eternal future actually begins today.

                    We already have eternal life. That's what Jesus said. He is he is the way, truth, and the life. If we already possess his spiritual life and character, we have eternal life.

                    The whole purpose for Jesus' death was so that the spiritual life Israel already had could be made eternal. Under the Law, they were blessed, but they could not overcome the curse and condemnation of sin.

                    So Jesus rendered spiritual life "eternal life" when he died on the cross, and gave it to all who wanted it and were willing to pay the price to have it.

                    The price for having this life is giving up our own life for his. There must be no other God than the one God. We must yield our lives over to Christ in service, to serve the spirituality that he gives us.

                    Then we are assured of eternal life. There is nothing more we can do that live in fellowship with him, deferring to him in all things. When we let him live at the center of our beings, we properly put him on the throne of our lives, where he is able to rule as our savior from sin and death.

                    If we don't have eternal life now, it is because we have not yet placed him at the core of our being. And if we put him at the core of our being we generate in our lives a new character like his, doing the good things that he does. That is the assurance of our salvation, that we are like him.

                    1 John 3.2 Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. 3 All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure.
                    You are mixing eligibility for with having. That will not work.

                    I fail to see your point with that attempt....?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Doug Brents View Post

                      I think what Jp101 is getting at is to make a distinction between God (who had no beginning and has no end), and us who did have a beginning. God is eternal. We can be immortal (never having an end), but we did have a beginning. I think that is the distinction JP is trying to make.

                      The point you are making here is valid. Jesus, who is eternal (had no beginning and no end) can manifest Himself in time as a human that had a beginning and still be the eternal God.

                      I hope this adds clarification to the conversation.
                      No, I already understood his argument. And my answer was just as you put it. Jesus originated from his own eternal Deity, as the revelation of God's Son emanating from God his Father. He is one God expressed in time as the Son. Inasmuch as the Son was from eternity he is the eternal Son. The revelation of his humanity had a beginning in time, but his personhood as God originated from eternity.

                      This is the kind of thing Origen dealt with in describing the eternal generation of the Son. Tertulllian also described it in distinction from the Father as an inseparable emanation from God, like rays of light emanating from a center. And so there was a distinction of persons, and yet a unity of divine substance (I don't wish to get into the argument involved with Subordinationism.

                      And so what I'm saying, and what these Church Fathers were saying, is that eternity can mark something in time with a beginning, namely God's words. Those words emanate from the eternal God, and yet are spoken in time. The fact they are spoken in time do not make their source any less eternal. And therefore, the quality of those words are eternal, as well.

                      But the subject involves created men. Can they be born in time, and be eternal, as well? God said so. When we receive Christ, who is the spirituality that comprises our eternal life, we become eternal. All men are eternal, because God's eternal Word made us eternal.

                      But I'm speaking of enjoying eternal life and fellowship with God. When we accept Christ's life as our life, we have eternal life. The fact we had a beginning makes no difference. And we need not wait until we die to experience this spiritual life. In fact, it is critical that we experience it as soon as possible. This spiritual life is, in fact, Eternal Life when we accept it permanently in our heart.

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