Speaking Out Against Last Generation Theology

(Allen Shepherd) #449

I thought someone might like them! I knew one (opprobrium) but did not know how to spell it, so had to look it up, and there found the other, which I had heard of.

Note the difference between these views and he one by Ellen in Mount of Blessing:

Not by painful struggles or wearisome toil, not by gift or sacrifice, is righteousness obtained; but it is freely given to every soul who hungers and thirsts to receive it. “Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat, . . . without money and without price.” “Their righteousness is of Me, saith the Lord,” and, “This is His name whereby He shall be called, The Lord Our Righteousness.” Isaiah 55:1; 54:17; Jeremiah 23:6.
No human agent can supply that which will satisfy the hunger and thirst of the soul. But Jesus says, “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me.” “I am the bread of life: he that cometh to Me shall [19] never hunger; and he that believeth on Me shall never thirst.” Revelation 3:20; John 6:35.

Now I agree that his grace is sufficient. But I think there is more than that here. He provides the righteousness, and that does not mean that it is just imaginary. After all, hungering and thirsting are not satisfied with fake food and water. It must be real and possible for us to receive such a gift. And it is not through striving. And to insist it is impossible is to really disagree with Jesus himself.

In your case with your orientation, I don’t think you can expect it to disappear. But it can be held in check, as you did for some time. Temptation is not sin.

But you have heard this before, and I do not mean to beat you with anything. But I think to believe that being victorious is impossible is to deny Christ, for he seems to have said it is.


I’m new to Spectrum and new to this discussion.

The way I understand it, simply put…

  • God loves us but He hates sin.
  • He hates it so much that He died for our sins in our place.
  • When we love God and give ourselves to Him, He gives us the desire to do His will.
  • We will then hate sin because He hates it and it separates us from Him.
  • But there is conflict. Sometimes it’s hard to give up our darling sins, so sometimes we struggle.
  • Our part is to surrender to Him, trust Him, and allow Him to remove those sins from our lives.
  • God does it all, but we have to cooperate in the process.
  • This is called Righteousness by Faith.

(Allen Shepherd) #451

Welcome, Graceful. Nice handle. I hope you enjoy your stay. I agree with your assessment.

I think this issue is put forth very well in John 3:16-19:

16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. 19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil.

16-17 speak of God’s free gift received by faith. Righteousness _by_Faith. Not work, effort, striving, or sacrifice (that is giving of something for it).

18-19 speak of the reason that many do not become righteous. They love darkness. That is the verdict, because righteousness is a gift. etc.

(Tom Loop) #452

You have summed it up quite well, Graceful. Welcome to the discussion.

(George Tichy) #453

Not that fast “my friend”… :wink:
I bet he will be back fresh, as if we had not asked any questions about the “survey” or even pretending there was no survey at all.

Maybe, like KP, he will be raptured routinely but then will show up again and again to check on our perfection. I am sure they trust us, but they have to verify. “Trust but verify.” :wink:

(George Tichy) #454

Welcome to Spectrum, I hope you will enjoy our conversations and will participate for many years to come.
Your post describes the process of sanctification very well.

(reliquum) #455

Oh how perfectly uncalvinist of you!
Once perfect always perfect doesn’t translate to once raptured always?
I’m soooo confused.

In other news, religious neuroscience (a field in its infancy, if not waiting birth), interesting that a few small studies in last few years suggests that the dopamine fix released from the nucleus acumbens from “religious experiences” is akin to that in drug addicts brains. Foods (like cheese!) and sex (particularly risky, fetish, illicit sex), gambling also. Pride as been implicated-particularly when attached to “religious rightness”. Hopefully new and well designed studies are transpiring as we speak.

Is it “dopamine, or the devil”, who made me do it?

(Elmer Cupino) #456

Here’s a book on Neurotheology by Andrew Newberg of Jefferson University Hospital. You should enjoy it.

(Brad(Luna)) #457

That’s hilarious lol.

I think LGT proponents are taking an idea of one becoming more like Christ, which in the eastern tradition would be called theosis(known as becoming more absorbed into the image of Christ) and transform it into some sort of moral checklist. While they claim perfection can be possible, they can’t actually produce any evidence of the sort, so they shift the goal posts to the end of the world.

There is certainly evidence of Christianity leading to changed lives(sometimes), but there’s no evidence of perfection.

(Elmer Cupino) #458

Welcome to Spectrum. Excellent formulation of our ongoing conversation. As they say, the devil is in the details. For instance a sub segment of SDA have no conflict and is confident of attaining full perfection the likes of only God. A sub segment of SDA believe that sin is anatomically based whereas some believe it is behaviorally base. Stick around and you will enjoy and learn all at the same time. Should we have disabling conflict, rest assured our Spectrum prophet-in-residence George @GeorgeTichy will lead us out of the wilderness as the prophets of old did of the Israelites.

(Brad(Luna)) #459

If they believe it’s purely behavioral, then LGT proponents are Pelagian, full stop.

(George Tichy) #460

With the advantage of having four new baby parakeets already in training for their job in assisting the “prophet”… :slight_smile:

(George Tichy) #461

Not purely behavioral, but behavior being part of it. They actually mix such a complex “salad of thoughts” that people become amazed at it even without understanding it.

Just read KP’s posts here. Some people fall for his eloquence and get distracted by his “theological authority” as he quotes so many verses from the Bible and unending paragraphs from EGW. The victims just become so distracted that they lose the ability to think by themselves (brainwashing!), to a point of missing the simple fact that LGT is nothing but the perfectionism heresy disguised. Which was rejected by the Church many times in the past.

(Steve Mga) #462

George –
It is the difference between Living gritting our teeth to “not” do something.
OR, letting the Holy Spirit REMOVE, as Paul says, "having a change in our
brains, our thinking, and replacing our thinking with Mature Behavior, as
described in Gal 5: 19-21.
And enjoying MATURE Behavior, and not Immature, Adolescent type behavior.


One of the things I try to do each week (an exercise in “counting your blessings”) is to look back over the last week of my life and detail the events, details, interactions with others, and try to be thankful, and to review God’s grace in my life.

While looking at a video online, specifically the nativity scene from the “The Bible” series that came out a few years ago, I noticed something. I try to view this scene once a month when the freshness and self awareness of God’s holiness… fades out due to the noise of life. Jesus is born, and Joseph and Mary are focused on the newness of his birth… at this point the wise men appear. Mary turns away to focus on Jesus momentarily, and as Joseph begins to turn… he notices that all creation bows in worship. It is a very powerful scene. It’s a deep reminder to me that “wise men still seek Him”…

while musing on this for several days, it occurred to me that the LGT belief of perfection, doesn’t really fit into the holiness of God even from a behavioral perspective. Sin may be the “transgression of the law”, but it doesn’t take into account the actual “self awareness” that occurs when you are truly in God’s presence.

And each of us in our own individual way, are given specific opportunities to “experience God” and of course that includes our “obedience”… but that obedience (our heart response to the reality of God in our lives)… must be based in the “awareness” of His presence (grace). Obedience otherwise is a totally human extant thought and/or process.

Here are a few axioms:

  1. The closer you get to God - the more Holy he appears… and the more sinful you appear to yourself… More experience in vulnerable connection with God, builds trust and relationship… and meekness, and humility.

  2. The closer you get to God - the more you realize you are valuable to him, your “behavior”/motivation… becomes “relational” based, not obedience based. You want to honor your deepening relationship, therefore your choices “behavior” are based on “getting to know him” …

On this point my SDA experience… was never based in getting to know Him. ONLY in the “sin is the transgression of the law” perspective. Which is technically true, but not “relational true”.

  1. I cant see myself currently as either arminean (spelling) or calvinist… because (SDA mindset = you CAN loose your salvation at any time) which = NO ASSURANCE vs you can NEVER loose your salvation… = no experience or “growth / self discovery / relationship” (calvinist - OSAS concept).


One of the things I look forward to - at potlucks AFTER the Bema judgment, is when, while in heaven. *** This is after laying my crown as Jesus’ feet --**** is sitting at the table next to David, Enoch, Elijah, Moses, and listening to them share stories, of how awesome it was to live for God, as they recall the times, trials and tribulations. Even then we will be looking for ways to “be thankful” and recall God’s leading in our lives.

with kind regards,


Thank you, and others, for the warm welcome! I do believe God does it all. Nothing I do merits salvation. It’s His free gift to me. But I do believe it takes some effort on my part in cooperating with Him to cleanse me of sin.
My own selfishness, my desire for indulgence in some things that aren’t good for my health, etc., continue to keep me from a closer walk with God and from being a better witness to others. I’ve asked God to take these things from me, but I realize that He will not remove them from me without my cooperation. Since God believes in my free choice, He will not remove something that I am not willing to give up. This causes conflict, effort, and struggle on my part. I pray that God will give me the willingness to be willing! We’re working on it, and by God’s grace, I know I will be victorious!

I want to be with the Apostle Paul who said to the Corinthians, “Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.”

(Kim Green) #466

Well…that is about as clear as mud…lol

(Kim Green) #467

“they are selling a product with not one case of success to support it.”

Not only this…but the number one challenge for copywriters is to come up with “solutions” to “problems”. So, what is the “pain” that LGTism “solves”? What are it’s “benefits”? I haven’t observed/heard one thing that it does concretely and creates even more “problems/pain” that cannot be resolved. Perfectionism is a trap on so many levels.

You have defined a incontrovertible issue…where is the “proof” for the LGT “benefits”? If the “product” cannot be proven to work or even produce one “case of success” (i.e. “testimonials”)…this is extremely difficult to “sell”.

Their brand “messaging” is way off. They are trying to spin out of what they have been arguing for years now to no avail. Instead of arguing, they should be working on “reframing”… but I am not going to give any more free pointers. :slight_smile:

(Kim Green) #468

Or…the “Dopamine Devil” which is similar to the “Caffeine Devil”. The difference is that one is produced by our bodies and the other by beans. :rofl:

(Kim Green) #469

“While they claim perfection can be possible, they can’t actually produce any evidence of the sort, so they shift the goal posts to the end of the world.”

Wow…love the way that you have expressed this! By moving the “goal posts” there is always the possibility that they could be correct.