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"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)

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    We are a community of confessing believers who love the gospel of Jesus Christ, affirm the Biblical and Christ-exalting truths of the Reformation such as the five solas, the doctrines of grace, monergistic regeneration, and the redemptive historical approach to interpreting the Scriptures.

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  • « Book Review: God's Indwelling Presence, by James M. Hamilton, Jr. | Main | Ascension Presbyterian Church »

    Regeneration, Faith, Love—In That Order

    Regeneration, Faith, Love—In That Order
    by John Piper

    In this chapter, we pick up on the very important text, 1 John 5:1–5, which we began to unpack in the last chapter. There is so much more. One of my aims here is to show that our ability to love others imperfectly is based on our assurance that in Christ we already love them perfectly. In other words, I want you to see for yourselves that, even when you fail to love as you ought, Christ’s perfection stands before God in place of that failure. And I want you to see that faith in Christ, not love for people, is the way you enjoy that union with Christ. Therefore, faith must come first and be the root of love and be different from love. Otherwise, love will be destroyed.

    If you don’t come at love this way, your failures will probably overwhelm you with guilt and hopelessness. If that happens, you will give way either to hardworking legalism or fatalistic immorality.

    Let’s start where we left off at the end of the previous chapter, namely, with the chain of thought in 1 John 5:3–4. The reason we are starting here is to see how regeneration, faith in Christ, and love for people relate to each other. And what will make all the difference is whether you see it for yourselves in the Word of God, not whether you read what I believe about it. That will guide how I lay it out.

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    Posted by John on April 1, 2009 11:38 AM

    Comments

    John 16:8

    "And He (the Holy Spirit), when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment;

    John 16:9

    of sin, because they do not believe in me;

    So the coming of the Holy Spirit occurs first in the human spirit (i.e. that person is regenerated) then the conviction about unbelief comes (that individual starts believing). The same thing happens to Lydia when Paul preached.

    So without regeneration it is not possible to have faith in the first place!!!

    These 2 verses do not say as many say today that we should have the saving faith first then the Holy Spirit enters (getting born again!)
    John 16:8 & 9 teaches the exact opposite. The Holy Spirit comes first and unbelief is removed next.

    Religious fakes were no surprise to Jesus. They do not contradict the new birth. They confirm it. Reformation cannot change vipers. They need regeneration.

    A paraphrase John Piper's "Finally Alive" book. page. 191. Great Book!!! Highly Recommended.

    Many wonderful points on every page. Very Helpful material even for the elite scholar to step back from empty intellectualism into warm truth.

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