Arminian Today

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Arminius on Regeneration and the Regenerate

XX. ON REGENERATION AND THE REGENERATE

1. The proximate subject of regeneration, which is effected in the present life by the Spirit of Christ, is the mind and the affections of man, or the will considered according to the mode of nature, not the will considered according to the mode of liberty. It is not the body of man, though man, when renewed by regeneration through his mind and feelings, actually wills in a good manner, and performs well through the instruments of the body.

2. Though regeneration is not perfected in a moment, but by certain steps and intervals; yet, as soon as ever it is perfected according to its essence, that is, through the renovation of the mind and affections, it renders the man spiritual, and capable of resisting sin through the assisting grace of God. Hence, also, from the Spirit, which predominates in him, he is called spiritual and not carnal, though he still has within him the flesh lusting against the Spirit. For these two, a carnal man and a spiritual man, are so denominated in opposition, and according to [that which is in each of them] the more powerful, prevailing or predominant party.

3. The regenerate are able to perform more true good, and of such as is pleasing to God, than they actually perform, and to omit more evil than they omit; and, therefore, if they do not perform and omit what they ought to do, that must not be ascribed to any decree of God or inefficacy of divine grace, but it must be attributed to the negligence of the regenerate themselves.

4. He who asserts that “it is possible for the regenerate, through the grace of Christ, perfectly to fulfill the law in the present life,” is neither a Pelagian, nor inflicts any injury on the grace of God, nor establishes justification through works.

5. The regenerate are capable of committing sin designedly and in opposition to their consciences, and of so laying waste their consciences, through sin, as to hear nothing from them except the sentence of condemnation.

6. The regenerate are capable of grieving the Holy Spirit by their sins, so that, for a season, until they suffer themselves to be brought back to repentance, he does not exert his power and efficacy in them.

7. Some of the regenerate actually thus sin, thus lay waste their conscience, and thus grieve the Holy Spirit.

8. If David had died in the very moment in which he had sinned against Uriah by adultery and murder, he would have been condemned to death eternal.

9. God truly hates the sins of the regenerate and of the elect of God, and indeed so much the more, as those who thus sin have received more benefits from God, and a greater power of resisting sin.

10. There are distinctions by which a man is said to sin with a full will, or with a will that is not full — fully to destroy conscience, or not fully but only partly, and to sin according to his unregenerate part. When these distinctions are employed in the sense in which some persons use them, they are noxious to piety and injurious to good morals.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

07/25/2013 at 10:05 AM

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