Skip navigation

Tag Archives: Sanctification

 

Every Person Reflects His-Story:

A Criticism of Traditional Behavioral Genetics

Image result for pictures of jesus creating the earth

The Book of Genesis illuminates how humanity is created in the Image of God. However, as a result of temptation and in the use of our freewill external forces through the leading of peer pressure of The Serpent and in our intent and action eating of The Fruit of knowledge of Good and Evil, or use of Pride, Our perfected image, or genetic composition, became corrupted. As a result, all humanity becomes vulnerable to death, and the environment turns against mankind as a reaction sin. The result of this corruption is our initial perfected holistic or completely mental, essential and spiritual presence is separated from God and all creation.

Throughout the Bible, we see a progression of diffusion of growth and decay or various struggles and loss that correlate to this continual imperfect-perfection stage growth progress. However, we also see the sovereignty of God at work in the restoration of humanity and all humanity. First expressed in the Old Testament through the various lesser messiahs such as Abraham, Moses, Melchizedek, and Boaz and in the New Testament through the teachings life examples.  Finally, this process is illuminated in the prophesized death, resurrection and ascension of Christ in which the genetic curse of Adam, or all humanity, was removed to all whom come to live in obedience in and by faith in Christ in cooperation with God through the aid of the Holy Spirit.

Faith like any other form of belief begins with curiosity, then may transform into convincing, a wavering understanding or Probability, and finally evolves into conviction or the pursuit and living in and by the possibility-probability and assurance of truth.

The Bible is in part a book of history, part a scientific journal, part a philosophical dialogue, part legal guidelines for social living, but in truth is an illustration of both the never-ending process of creation.

This Eugenic process involving in various stages required for our transformation back into the Likeness of Christ was stolen from us as a result from our initial sin of pride and involves overcoming ones’ continual transgressions as well as acceptances of shortcomings and forgiveness. The reaction of sin often produces hostility within us and in all creation around us. Furthermore, over 2/3 of the Bible is written in story form using allegory, metaphors, contextual language and such to tell of mankind and God’s  interaction and relational aspects and expectations of morality and general wisdom.

The Bible is a qualitative or an active telling of God’s Love Story for Man and his continual involvement and efforts to redeem us throughout history. His-Story and that of all men is told in stages within scripture. Ecclesiastes 3 compares life to spring, summer, fall and winter.  Finally, the Gospel is told in stages from the Birth of Jesus, to his baptism and then his death. This progressions can be further broken down in a 3 day waiting period followed by his  resurrection and finally his ascension, (after 40 days) and the sending of “His Presence, or Holy Spirit” at Pentecost ( 50 days/ during Jewish Harvest Fest).

Quantification studies seek to identify and correlate variables that exist within a subject or between issues or factors within groups, the environment, or outside individuals (Martorell, Papalia, & Feldman, 2014). In contrast Qualitative Methods express traits in symbols, graphs, or other forms that focus on the perception and prospective of subjects and thus tend to tell a story (Martorell, Papalia, & Feldman, 2014).  The weakness of a traditional behavioral genetic study whether the basis is on an individual, family, or on adoption studies or even group dynamics is it only accounts for the genetic variables and underestimates the influence of environmental forces (Martorell, Papalia, & Feldman, 2014).  Forces of natural origin such as virus, disease, and natural disasters, and manmade conditions such as war, famine and other concerns need to be account for.

Additionally all external environmental elements include issues of nurture, such as the amount of encouragement and love present in the household and by peers, as well as social, political, economic, spiritual and as mentioned biological and environmental crisis, and other influences of individuals, society need to be accounted for.

Finally, We evolve and attempt to coexist in peace, hope, love and joy and endure graciously in suffering awaiting our finally restoration of all creation and our assurance of retransformation in to the exactness of Christ himself for those of us striving to live obediently in faith for his glory. Awaiting the return of our Savior King and serving not Principalities or the Ways of the World but living as Ambassadors of the Way and Stewards and Citizens and Ambassadors of the Kingdom of Heaven.

In defense of the genetic view or Nature. All of us inherit recessive and dominate genes that determine certain bio-socio-cognitive-emotional traits and the potentiality or certain innate abilities and disabilities (Martorell, Papalia, & Feldman, 2014). Yet, there is merit to the oppositional view of those who support a view towards more of an extrinsic-environmental or nurture based approach.as many of these inborn traits must be activated by external forces whether of physical or of a metaphysical nature (Martorell, Papalia, & Feldman, 2014).

The traditional methods of qualitative studies tend to focus on genetic traits and at times can overemphasis environment variables.  Whereas quantitative studies focus on thoughts, feelings and other reactions and often are obtained from self-reporting methods, simple observation, and as such are subject to a certain degree of bias by either the subject, the environment or the observer / tester or other forms of bias (Martorell, Papalia, & Feldman, 2014).

Thus, to gain full comprehension of people and culture one should use a combination of both types of research method.  This form of analysis, or critical thinking, involves abstraction, logic and reason. Additionally, a combination of theories and methods should form the basis of a systematic model and then become the foundation of an eclectic or holist method.

The word holistic is derived from whole or wholesome, which means “completeness”. This word has origins in Old English, Greek and Latin deriving from “Holy” or “without sin”.

The Bible states, all humanity entered perfected creation before the fall (Gen. 1: 26-27) and thus will return to perfection after Christ returns and establish his Eternal Reign. This reunion and restoring of  All Creation to Oneness with God and All Humanity whom so chose to live obediently in and by faith to his Image is a unity of mind-body, soul & Spirit (Rom 6, 8, 12; 2 Cor 4; Phil 1-6; Isa 11).

Thus, Our Blessed Assurance offered and repaid by the Gracious and Merciful Sacrificial Love Offering on the Tree of Life is a gift to everyone who chooses to accept the gift, repent from Sin, walk in Christ’s Steps, practicing and living in faith and love. For true freedom is not found in works or deed of man but In Christ alone.

In God, Christ and Spirit,

Trent Rindoks

Word Count # 1161

Image result for genetics image

References

Martorell, G., Papalia, D. E., & Feldman, R. D. (2014). A Child’s World: Infancy through Adolescence (13th ed.). New York: McGraw Hill Education.

 

Image result for unity in diversity

Advertisements

 Image result for Salvation

In Regards to Salvation: Is One Truly Eternally Secure?

In regards to the issue on whether or not once a person professes faith in Jesus Christ as one’s Lord and Savior can lose the gracious gift of salvation is based on ones view of freewill.  Many Evangelicals are forsaking the concept of eternal security or the basis that the Bible does supports the notion that once a person accepts Christ as their savior salvation is secure.  This  premise is based on a theological theory that sanctification is an ongoing process and thus one is may never be truly restored to the “Likeness of Christ”[1], and  is as result of the nature of sin, one’s free will and the accumulation of  unrepented sins in one’s life. Thus, one given a free agent may be able to surrender the gift of gracious salvation. Although, Some Evangelicals believe the only  mortal sins will result in the removal of salvation  such as  the Sins of apostasy   and blasphemy, which would include  a willful denial of  Salvation,  a denouncement of God to enter in the worship of false religions or to engage in the service of the beast and worship of the devil.[2]

Erwin Lutzer offers an apologetic defense in favor of unconditional security as stated the last five points of Calvinism affirmed at the Synod of Dort. “There it was spoken of the perseverance of saints, the belief that all who truly believe will persevere in Grace until the end.”[3]

Lutzer offers Scriptural support of Christ sovereignty and Authority as Savior and King to solidify his position, “And this is the will of Him who sent me, that all that He has given me will not be Lost (John 6:39).  Christ additionally states, “My sheep hear my voice and I know them and they follow me and I give Eternal Life to them and they shall never perish. No one shall snatch them out of my hands as the father has given them to Me an none is Greater than the Father and able to snatch them out of the Father’s Hands( John 10: 27-29).”

Further Evidence is provided in the Bible “for The Holy Spirit is the seal of inheritance (Eph 1:14) as well as the seal until the day of redemption (Eph 4:30).”[4]

Lutzer finally strengthens his position by explaining the Doctrine of Assurance. He states there are three witnesses that will attest to the fact of who is saved and eternally secure. “First Christ himself stated those who believe will have eternal life but one must understand the word believe as to trust and rely on him. One must acknowledge a personal need and an understanding of one’s sinful nature and one’s helplessness without the substitutionary sacrifice that was given by Christ on the cross. Additional faith must be directed on total reliance on Christ. Additionally some place trust in Baptism or good works or the Mass, or even in prayer. This misplaced trust or objective faith not Christ centered faith. Lutzer boldly states “’that all the prayed stated by all people never changed the mind of God on the nature of sinners.’”[5] The second Witness is the Holy Spirit who through his indwelling brings sanctification and regeneration and leads to the final witness “New Life” or outer change.[6] This is proven in testimony of action, and conduct as the Blossoming of the Fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5) Becoming Christ Minded (Phil 1-4) and exhibiting the characteristics of love (1 Cor 13, Matt 22: 36-40).

Those who hold the view of conditional security believe that although one’s Salvation is secure on God’s part man can return the gracious gift by either committing, apostasy, blasphemy, the hardening of the heart by the accumulation of unrepented sin and thus by blocking or removing the seal of protection, or the worship of false Gods or Satan. Any of the above must be an of self will enacted by the freewill of the free agent and it is debated among Evangelicals on whether or not once one chooses to give up the gift one can reenter the kingdom of God.  While some claim that Hebrews 10:26-27 supports this claim as the notion of freewill is based on the concept that God is Love and what a loving relationship it would beg to reason this is a misinterpretation y those who hold such a view. [7]

Additionally, scripture evidence for the redemption of the Lost is stated by Jesus in the parable of the Lost Son (Luke 15: 11-32). Additionally one could cite That Jesus holds the keys to death and Hades ( underworld), Jesus judges the living and the Dead so that the spirit may live as God does( 1 Peter 4:6) and the fact Jesus  descended into the lower parts of Earth before he conquered death( Eph 4:8-9; Rom 10:7).

Additional who are we to questions the providence of God and the will of Spirit or the Power and Authority of Christ. The main issue on free will is that for one to truly love one must be able to choice thus have fee will and if one must profess believe in Christ in order to come to Salvation the same free agent can denounce it.  It would be presumptuous to state Jesus have given us the Lord’s Prayer, stressed forgiveness and Emphasized love if sanctification was not at least partially are responsibility.   Paul teaches all people will be judged be for God and Christ in Romans 2:16 and 2 Timothy 4:1.

Additionally, while Lutzer holds the Blessed Assurance is proof of eternal security it could also argued simply against Lutzer that all this proofs is salvation is Eternally secure from The Divine perspective but from the human perspective it conditional. One could see this in the process of sanctification after the process of repentance, profession of Faith, indwelling of Spirit and the ongoing process of sanctification and spiritual maturation and the continual battle of flesh and Spirit the Paul warns about in his various Epistles( Rom 12:12; Gal 5…). In addition, one can also deduce the entire process of faith itself just like any relationship is one of interdependent for although the individual must come to belief by faith the Holy Spirit provides and strengthens the faith of the believer and the church. Providing the necessary gifts of inspiration, encouragement, protection, healing, signs, wonders and all else need to equip the individual and the Body for the Kingdom calling and serve the glory and will of God.

In God, Christ, & Spirit,

Trent Rindoks

Bibliography

Boyd, Gregory A, and Paul R Eddy. Across the Spectrum: Understanding Issues in Evangelical Theology. Edited by 2nd. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2009.

Lutzer, Erwin. The Doctrines That Divide. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 1998.

 

 

[1] Image Dei in Latin: Created in Image of God (Genesis 1:27,2:15,21) Eikōn in Greek: drawn from a direct image direct representation or not a mirror of but the same likeness of ( 2 Cor  4:4; Col 1;15, 2:21, 3:10)

[2] Boyd, Gregory A, and Paul R Eddy. Across the Spectrum: Understanding Issues in Evangelical Theology. Edited by 2nd. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2009.

 

[3] Lutzer, Erwin. The Doctrines That Divide. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 1998.

 

[4] Lutzer, Erwin. The Doctrines That Divide. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 1998.

 

[5] Lutzer, Eric. The Doctrines That Divide. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 1998.

 

[6] Lutzer, Eric. The Doctrines That Divide. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 1998.

[7] Lutzer, Eric. The Doctrines That Divide. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 1998.

Image result for Salvation

%d bloggers like this: