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Thread: "He is likely not saved."

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    "He is likely not saved."

    These are a known theologian's words and directed at me, this week, via email to my son in law.

    Why?

    Because I am a smoker and have been for about 10 years now.

    Apparently, a man can not be a Christian and a smoker at the same time.

    But apparently, a man can be a legalist and a Christian at the same time.

    Glenn

    Edit: I removed the name as I have not been provided with all of the communications between them.
    Last edited by Razor; 02-02-19 at 08:14 AM. Reason: To remove a name.

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    Jesus saved all kinds of people, even smokers! I'm reminded of this article written years ago on "regional sanctification": https://www.pristinegrace.org/media.php?id=296

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    Talking

    Maybe you should ask him "if I were to quit smoking, then what must I do to earn Christ's grace?"

    Then read him this:

    Gal 3:1You foolish Galatians, who has bewitched you, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified?
    2This is the only thing I want to find out from you: did you receive the Spirit by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith?
    3Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?
    After that you can exercise your liberty and call him an idiot if you wish
    Isaiah 45:7, (KJV), I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

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    Hi Razor,

    I agree with everybody else here..... this pastor seems to be off his rocker....

    But, I have to say, I don't agree with smoking. The evidence is pretty much in on smoking: its bad for you. And, its bad for others. My boss at work just lost his wife to lung cancer. She never smoked in her life. He, on the other hand, was a prolific smoker. She basically died through his second-hand smoke, which is meant to be worse for you than first hand smoke. He just didn't consider her. And, had he died from lung cancer, what about making his wife and family have to suffer through all that, while he had cancer? Smoking is just not loving.

    Now, it seems to me that you basically have three options: 1) you can either deny the truth that smoking is bad for you (I'd say this is the worst option, and a very bad idea, since our allegiance should always be to the truth above everything), or, 2) you can recognize that smoking is bad for you (and others) but continue doing it. This is surely wrong, because God has given us these bodies and so we should take good care of them, and for the reasons stated above, or, 3) you can recognize that smoking is bad for you and seek to take appropriate measures to stop, first by cutting down and then moving towards cutting it out altogether. If addiction to nicotine is the issue preventing you then those vape thingys are probably better for you (as they have no tar) and you can move towards cutting out the addiction later.

    Paul said, "all things are lawful, but not all things are helpful" - and that means not all things are loving.

    John
    Last edited by alt731; 02-02-19 at 02:31 PM.
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    Eating hamburgers is bad also especially if the meat is charred (known carcinogen). Smoking a cigarette, cigar, or occasional pipe isn’t going to kill anyone.
    This is my signature.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brandan View Post
    Eating hamburgers is bad also especially if the meat is charred (known carcinogen). Smoking a cigarette, cigar, or occasional pipe isn’t going to kill anyone.
    Right, I was assuming that it was a bit more than the occasional pipe.

    But, even with your own analogy, Brandan, you'd have to admit that eating too many hamburgers can be bad for you. Gluttony is a terrible sin, despite how much Calvinisticly minded Christians choose to ignore this one.
    I don't like being corrected, but don't worry about that, do it anyway. I'll get over it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brandan View Post
    Jesus saved all kinds of people, even smokers! I'm reminded of this article written years ago on "regional sanctification": https://www.pristinegrace.org/media.php?id=296
    I thoroughly enjoyed the article Brandan. Thank you!

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    Quote Originally Posted by alt731 View Post
    Right, I was assuming that it was a bit more than the occasional pipe.

    But, even with your own analogy, Brandan, you'd have to admit that eating too many hamburgers can be bad for you. Gluttony is a terrible sin, despite how much Calvinisticly minded Christians choose to ignore this one.
    I was taught that a glutton is one who gorges and then forces a throwing up in order to continue eating. I have never met one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brandan View Post
    Eating hamburgers is bad also especially if the meat is charred (known carcinogen). Smoking a cigarette, cigar, or occasional pipe isn’t going to kill anyone.
    We know who kills and makes alive.

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    Gluttony just means eating to excess. We should keep our eating in moderation. We shouldn't make food an idol.
    Last edited by alt731; 02-02-19 at 06:38 PM.
    I don't like being corrected, but don't worry about that, do it anyway. I'll get over it.

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    Guess that means no dessert for me!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brandan View Post
    Guess that means no dessert for me!
    "Thou hast made us a strife unto our neighbours, and our enemies mock among themselves" (Psalm 80:6)

    Please don't make fun Brandan. Its not kind.
    I don't like being corrected, but don't worry about that, do it anyway. I'll get over it.

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    John, I wasn't making fun of you. But I was simply pointing out the absurdity of defining gluttony as "eating to excess". This is no way meant to be an attack upon you, so please don't take it that way. What does that exactly mean? Does it mean taking one more bite than you actually need? (how does one KNOW how much they actually need?) Does eating dessert count as gluttony? Does it mean eating anything for the ENJOYMENT of eating? The law of Christ is written on the heart of every regenerate believer. Glenn, go ahead and smoke, but if you do, do it unto the Glory of God! Believe in God and do as you please.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brandan View Post
    John, I wasn't making fun of you. But I was simply pointing out the absurdity of defining gluttony as "eating to excess". This is no way meant to be an attack upon you, so please don't take it that way. What does that exactly mean? Does it mean taking one more bite than you actually need? (how does one KNOW how much they actually need?) Does eating dessert count as gluttony? Does it mean eating anything for the ENJOYMENT of eating? The law of Christ is written on the heart of every regenerate believer. Glenn, go ahead and smoke, but if you do, do it unto the Glory of God! Believe in God and do as you please.
    Ridiculous. That's like saying, "Glen, go ahead and commit adultery to the glory of God." Foolishness.

    Smoking causes cancer. Anyone telling you to smoke is being very unloving indeed. It shows no respect for either Glen or those who live with him.

    Gluttony is eating to excess, obviously. We're to enjoy our food, we're to enjoy a good desert. But as soon as our food eating becomes a problem for us, as it does with these weasing, panting, type-2 diabetes having, fat Americans, frankly, it's a sin. We're not to treat our bodies like that. They're temples of the Holy Spirit.
    I don't like being corrected, but don't worry about that, do it anyway. I'll get over it.

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    Adultery and smoking is not the same thing. Smoking a cigar does not cause cancer. Glenn knows what to do if he’s a regenerate believer. Nobody needs to babysit him.
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    If the law of God is written on our hearts, aren't we capable of policing ourselves?

    What is indicative of a so called leader ,pastor, clergy, deacon, etc. if they are preoccupied with me smoking or having a drink or some other such nonsense?

    What does constitute a legalist?

    What's the difference between these types of actions and those in Galatians?

    Gal. 2:4 But it was because of the false brethren secretly brought in, who had sneaked in to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, in order to bring us into bondage.
    Isaiah 45:7, (KJV), I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

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    https://www.pristinegrace.org/media.php?id=562

    From our former contributor and dearly departed sister Eileen:

    Unbelieving belief!

    It’s what you believe a believer is when you’re not a believer, everyone believes something. I can remember exactly how I thought and what I believed a Christian was. Let’s see…it was definitely, totally based on what ‘they’ did or didn’t do. You know, like not smoking, not drinking, not dancing, not saying those bad words, above all never, ever listening to rock and roll music, praying before a meal, going to church on Sunday and being looked down on because I didn’t ‘do’ the same things that they did or did those things that they ‘didn’t’ do. Wow, how to keep up with all the do’s and don’ts. That is truly what I thought and I know so many, even now, who think exactly the same way.

    It’s a lie of course, and we know who the father of lies is, don’t we? Just the other day I had an opportunity to express this very thing to some family members, just as I was able to tell my mom the same before she died. It’s such a subtle, pious lie. It sounds so good, so holy, so right “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death” (Proverbs 14:12), but it isn’t right, it’s a lie!

    The scriptures tell us that we have no righteousness of our own, we have nothing to offer to God that is acceptable to Him, nothing. So if in any way you rely upon your ‘works’ to be justified before God, you are believing and relying upon a false Gospel as the Galatians were doing. Paul told the Galatians “I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain” (Gal 2:21).

    You see, Christianity is not about our behavior, it’s about Christ! It’s about life and death, light and darkness, sin and forgiveness, it’s about the Truth, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, it’s not about what I do, it’s about what He has done. “And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” (Phi 2:8)

    “For by Grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them” (Eph 2:8-10).
    Christianity is all about the grace of God in Christ Jesus. We, as Christians, believe in the Gospel and we rejoice in it by the gift of faith given by the Holy Spirit. Every good and perfect gift is from above (James 1:17), the Word, obedience, the blessings, the communion we have with Him and with one another are all gifts of Grace.

    I wonder about the believers at Ephesus who were told by the Lord in Revelation that they had left their first love, namely Christ. I wonder if they had neglected to remember grace.

    “And of His fullness we have all received and grace for grace. For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1 16-17).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg View Post
    If the law of God is written on our hearts, aren't we capable of policing ourselves?

    What is indicative of a so called leader ,pastor, clergy, deacon, etc. if they are preoccupied with me smoking or having a drink or some other such nonsense?

    What does constitute a legalist?

    What's the difference between these types of actions and those in Galatians?
    The apostle Paul did occupy at least some of his time correcting the Corinthian church for their moral failings, and pastors are to reprove, rebuke and encourage with all long-suffering and doctrine.

    As for the situation in Galatia, it seems there were some there either saying, or, at least, submitting to the idea that to be part of the people of God, you had to keep the ceremonial law of Moses. Since the outward ceremonies depicted inward realities, and were in that sense symbolical of the principle of the righteousness of the law—that the man who has practiced these things shall live by them—which is life by works, life by choices, life by "choosing life" Paul took their submission to the ceremonies as a violation of the gospel of grace itself. So a legalist is one who seeks to justify themselves by works and not by grace.

    Nobody's doing that here. We're just having a disagreement about what is moral and what is immoral. If you think putting cancer-sticks in your mouth every day is a good and loving thing to do, then I think you're blinding yourself to overwhelming evidence linking smoking to lung cancer.
    Last edited by alt731; 02-03-19 at 02:41 PM.
    I don't like being corrected, but don't worry about that, do it anyway. I'll get over it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by alt731 View Post
    Ridiculous. That's like saying, "Glen, go ahead and commit adultery to the glory of God." Foolishness.
    I appreciate your concern and input. When you move your argument from smoking to adultery, it exposes the the weakness in your argument against smoking. The author I mentioned in the OP did exactly the same thing. He somehow connected smoking to sorcery and what Paul says about sorcery. Interesting.

    Quote Originally Posted by alt731 View Post
    Smoking causes cancer. Anyone telling you to smoke is being very unloving indeed. It shows no respect for either Glen or those who live with him.
    No it doesn't. Correlation is not causation. I have family members that lived to be in their late 80's and 90's. They started smoking at the age of 12 and 14. They smoked their entire lives.

    Quote Originally Posted by alt731 View Post
    Gluttony is eating to excess, obviously. We're to enjoy our food, we're to enjoy a good desert. But as soon as our food eating becomes a problem for us, as it does with these weasing, panting, type-2 diabetes having, fat Americans, frankly, it's a sin. We're not to treat our bodies like that. They're temples of the Holy Spirit.
    What is the proper BMI requirement of the Holy Spirit?

    Again, I do understand your position. That is precisely why I can not hold to it.

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    Correlation is not causation, but it often indicates causation. Again, to deny that smoking significantly increases the risk of cancer, is willful ignorance on your part. Smoking is bad for you. It makes your lungs black. It darkens your teeth. It lessens your ability to enjoy food, as it somewhat numbs the taste buds. It gives you a terrible cough. And, all the evidence suggests it is a major cause of lung cancer. It was bad for that gluttonous lump, Spurgeon, when he defended it. And its bad for the people around you.

    When you make fun of my position, saying, "how ridiculous that the Holy Spirit would have a proper BMI requirement!" the irony is, that the only reason BMI isn't the Holy Spirit's requirement, is that it isn't a very good indicator of general health. If there were a general health measure, then the Holy Spirit's requirement would certainly be "healthy." God commands us not to drink to excess, eat to excess, smoke to excess, etc.... that's all in the Bible, explicitly or implicitly, and what's more, its all obvious. The only people who don't accept it, are the people who think that God didn't create science. He did. God is the King of Body Mass Indexes. He is Sovereign over all. So obey him.

    "For of him, and through him, and for him [are] all things: to him be glory for ever. Amen. Therefore, I beseech you brethren, by the compassions of God, to present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, [which is] your intelligent service" (Romans 11:36-12:1)
    Last edited by alt731; 02-03-19 at 03:27 PM.
    I don't like being corrected, but don't worry about that, do it anyway. I'll get over it.

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