Friday, October 10, 2008

"Once Saved, Always Saved" heresy refuted by Charles Finney

Right now I'm doing an essay on Charles Finney's Lectures on Revivals of Religion, it's mostly how Americans tend to anthropomorphize God into an image of themselves, etc. (You know those Canadian profs). Finney was a Baptist Preacher, Abolitionist, and the founder of Evangelicalism's greatest weapon: "The Altar Call" and anxious seat manuevers, yes this is the man who destroyed the Monergism of historic Protestantism. But I found one passage I like, he lets loose on the popular twisting of Calvin's doctrine of perseverance. This is the detestable heresy known as 'Once Saved, Always Saved'. I've found it everywhere -even Capernwray- but to throw the Mennonites a bone here, they reject it (one of their few but notable successes). I'll let Finney do the talking from here out though:

"Sanctification is obedience, and, as a progressive thing, consists in obeying God more and more perfectly. Young converts should be taught so as to understand what perseverance is. It is astonishing how people talk about perseverance. As if the doctrine of perseverance was "Once in grace, always in grace," or "Once converted, sure to go to heaven." This is not the idea of perseverance. The true idea is, that if a man is truly converted, he will continue to obey God. And as a consequence, he will surely go to heaven. But if a person gets the idea that because he is converted, therefore he will assuredly go to heaven, that man will almost assuredly go to Hell." - Charles Grandison Finney "Instructions of Young Converts in Lectures on the Revivals of Religion".

2 comments:

  1. "The true idea is, that if a man is truly converted, he will continue to obey God. And as a consequence, he will surely go to heaven."

    Yuck. Honestly I don't think Finney understood the first thing about theology. Finney betrays here that he believes obedience brings about eternal life, rather than the atonement of Jesus Christ. Finney, I believe, is a greeter at the gates of hell.

    The basis of our salvation is not that we don't sin. but "But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins."

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  2. did you mean mr. Jared Nelson, that the truly converted never sin again after he accept Jesus Christ as personal savior and Lord?

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