Sunday, March 1, 2020

Sardis – The Dead Church - Part 2

Temple Baptist Church - 3-1-2020
Revelation 3:1-6


A.  Last week, we saw 7 major happenings that brought about the Protestant Reformation:

1.  The Renaissance Period. 

2.  The St. Peter’s Basilicas and Sistine Chapel financial fiasco.

3.  The false doctrine and abuses of Indulgences.

4.  The invention of the Printing Press that placed literature and God’s Word in the hands of men in general.

5.  The Reformation or intent thereof of the Roman Catholic Church along with the excommunication of Martin Luther.

6.  The entrance of various translations of the Bible into German, French, and English.

7.  The abiding presence of churches with biblical succession from the Apostolic churches.

B. Tonight, I want to look at the results of the Protestant Reformation.  The Protestants (Martin Luther-Germany, Ulrich Zwingli-Switzerland, John (Jean) Calvin-French, Jacobus Arminius-Dutch, John Knox-Scotland, John and Charles Westley-England) tried to do a right thing the wrong way.  Reform but not separate! 

C.  What caused the deadness of the Protestant churches which had a combination of right and wrong doctrines.  Though they got some things right, they continued to have some parts of Roman Catholicism in their doctrine and worship.  This past week, we have seen the Protestant churches plus the Southern Baptist churches observing Shrove Tuesday, Ash Wednesday, and setting up their ecumenical Lentin Services.

D.  Mainline Protestant Churches born out of the Protestant Reformation. 

1.  Lutheran – Branches out of it: Evangelical Lutheran. 

2.  Anglican (Church of England) – Congregational, Episcopal, Methodism. Out of Methodism: United Methodists, Wesleyan, Holiness, Pentecostal, Charismatic, Non-denominational.

3.  Protestantism - Reformed Churches, Presbyterian, Church of Scotland.

E.  These mainline Protestant denominations continue with the use of vestments, liturgical services, along with pedo-baptism and the acceptance of sprinkling instead of immersion for baptism.  Some of these teachings vary in individual churches.

F.  Later Protestant Churches – Presbyterian, Methodists, Church of God, Assemblies of God, A.M.E., evangelicals, etc. along with a variety of off-shoots.  Most of these denominations split along the lines of:

1.  Baptism.

a)  Some still practice pedo-baptism while most do not.

b)  Some allow sprinkling, pouring, or immersion as methods of baptism.

c)  Again, these practices can vary from church to church.

2.  Calvinism vs. Arminianism.

a)  The teachings of John Calvin - Calvinism or Reformed Theology (TULIP Theology).

b)  The teachings of Jacob Arminius – Armenism.

G.  Calvinism vs. Arminianism.

Calvinism                                                                           Arminianism

1.  Total Depravity or Total Inability.                                1.  Free Will or Human Ability.

2.  Unconditional Election.                                                2.  Conditional Election.

3.  Limited Atonement.                                                       3.  General Atonement.

4.  Irresistible Grace.                                                           4.  Grace Resisted.

5.  Perseverance of the Saints.                                           5.  Uncertainty of Perseverance.

h.  A true biblical perspective:  Protestants say that you are either Arminian or you are Calvinist.  We are not either!  As Bible believers, we cannot agree with any point of Calvinism and are not Arminian. 

1.  Total Depravity or Human Ability.  God has given man free will and faith to be exercised.

John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Revelation 22:17  And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

2.  Unconditional Election or Conditional Election.  Salvation is based upon repentance and faith.

Acts 20:21  Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.

Hebrews 6:1  Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,

3.  Limited Atonement of General Atonement.  Jesus Christ died for the sins of the whole world.

1 Timothy 2:4  Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.

1 John 2:2  And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.

4.  Irresistible Grace or Grace Resisted.  Man’s free will allows him to resist the wooing of the Holy Spirit.

John 5:39-40  Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.  (40)  And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life.

Acts 7:51  Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye.

5.  Perseverance of the Saints or Uncertain Perseverance.  At this point, the Bible departs from both Calvinism and Armenism.  Calvinism teaches that the elect will persevere because they have no choice while Armenism teaches that the saved can become lost if they do not endure to the end.  The Bible believer rejects perseverance and embraces preservation. 

John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

John 10:28  And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.

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