You studied under William Lane Craig? And you don't believe in the resurrection of Jesus?
Aw man. You've gotta be one of the heaviest disappointments in WLC's life.
Since you're an atheist apostate, I guess it's senseless to ask whether you think you were once a true believer who fell away and lost salvation (Arminian view) or a never-was-believer false convert (Calvinist view).
3/27/2008 12:38 PM
Blogger John W. Loftus said:
Well, truth since this interests you we've written on this question several times to be found here, (questions 3-7).How utterly incoherent:
1. If you were a *true* believer, you actually fell away.
2. If so, then Arminian theology would be true, at least theoretically.
3. That, in turn, commits you to LFW.
4. Yet, as a believer in determinism (of the naturalistic sort), you deny LFW; or at least you would if you were consistent.
5. If LFW is not true, Arminian theology cannot be true. Why? Because the premise that believers can fall away is predicated on the exercise of LFW.
6. So, if you were consistent, you'd just admit that you weren't truly a believer. You were simply self-deceived. In the end your biological or sociological imperative won the day. Determinism won out over LFW.
7. That would commit you, at least in theory, to Calvinistic theology, that is to at least admit that, if Christianity is true, Calvinistic soteriology is true. Yet you go out of your way to deny this, both as an Atheist and as an Arminian.
And look at the way you argue for the "reality" of your faith. In essence you say, "I was really a believer, I really, truly was, because I felt I was and I did these things. My faith was "sincere."
Theresa, whose work I'm presuming of course you endorse, since you pointed "Truth" to it as an answer to his question writes:
I used to have a devotional time every morning where I prayed for my friends and family and myself, I read the Bible from cover to cover numerous times during my devotions. I witnessed to my family and they were saved (except my dad, no matter how hard I prayed), I brought up my kids as Christians and led them in the sinners prayer, I spoke in tongues and gave prophecies, I went to prayer meetings and Bible studies, I studied the Bible and prayed with my Christian friends. I believed God had a plan for my life, I believed he would help me through any situation, I believed I had a personal relationship with him. I lived my life for him.
1. Having morning devotions is not proof a person is a believer.
2. Reading the Bible is not proof.
3. Witnessing to others is not proof.
4. Rearing your children as Christians is not proof.
5. Praying the sinner's prayer is not proof - neither is it an instrument of conversion to justification. It's a tool, not a magic formula, and never, ever does it appear in the Bible. Faith, which may be expressed as a prayer, is the instrument - and that is evidence of regeneration, not its cause.
6. Speaking in tongues is not proof.
7. Prophesying is not proof. (More could be said about that too...).
8. Praying and studying with Christians is not proof.
9. Believing God has a plan for your life is not proof (of what the plan actually is, it seems).
10. You believing you had a personal relationship with God is not proof you have one.
11."Living your life for Him," is so vague it could mean anything.
These are all "proof" of a credible profession of faith. But a credible profession of faith and a saving profession of faith aren't the same. They intersect, but they aren't the same thing. You would think that a man who had been to seminary would know that. The fact that you measure the "reality" of your past faith by these things is a testimony to why you fell away. Your faith was shallow and largely content free, likely drawn from the well of Evanjellyism and Easy Believism.
But the Bible never says our feelings of sincerity are a measure of assurance. The Bible never says that we should accept an apostate's testimony that he was "sincere" about his faith.
But this is precisely the way that Arminians (and other Libertarians like "Orthodox") have argued their position on the perseverance of the saints. In order to maintain that true Christians can (and do) "lose their salvation," they wind up ignoring what the Bible actually says about assurance and the distinctions it actually draws regarding true and false faith, all due to their "will worship."
Once again, then, we have Arminianism / Soteriological Libertarianism proving itself to be convertible with Atheism. Arminians, this should give you great pause. Why is it that when Arminians argue their soteriologicy, they agree with the Orthodox (whom they should, as consistent Protestants, say cannot give a credible profession of faith), and Atheists.
Yet Arminians are not Atheists....Another reason I'm not an Arminian.