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Shereen P.

Razon Word Life Bible Center Systematic Theology Bishop Edgar Pocot

July 19, 2011

A Reaction Paper on A Synopsis of Bible Doctrine: The Doctrine of Salvation by Charles C. Ryrie For a novice Bible scholar, salvation is a most interesting and challenging subject to tackle. Reading Ryries synopsis sure proved to be refreshing. And, I have to admit that most of my questions got answered. In this paper, I want to focus on the doctrine of salvation which he presented. It was not stated or did I just miss it?in the article if the collection of doctrine presented were of a certain Christian group so I automatically assumed its a general doctrine of Christianity. The first topic that he tackled was about the teaching on election. The word election itself was foreign to me. I have encountered that term before, in Sunday service preachings and Bible studies, but I never really pondered it. Ryrie stated that selectivity is evident in any of Gods activities. That is why there is what we call the elect. As much as we want to think that a good God should and must save all people from the harrowing reality of hell, God has made it clear: not everyone can and will see His kingdom. If I were an atheist or a new Christian, I would think Hey, isnt that unfair? Actually, I thought about that question hard. I wanted to ask the whys. The first why is, if God pre-determined everything, and it is a fact that not everyone will get to heaven, why create humans in the first place? Second, if He is an all-powerful God, why cant he just turn the hearts of His people so that in the end itll be a joyous feast and a happy ending? The fact of selectivity and election seem incongruent to the qualities of God if you will look at it in a superficial way. But as I think about the meaning of selectivity and election, I realized that these and questions like these are just based on my limited moral comprehension. Why create humans? I remember a pastor who answered this question for me. The discussion was rather long, but in the end he asked me this question: Do you want to have a child? I said yes. He didnt have to explain it more because I understood it already. That love that was difficult for me to grasp, that love was the reason why he created man even if he knew beforehand that this very offshoot of His unconditional love will cause Him pain, wrath, and His Son. God do not have to explain to us. But He is ever-willing to tell us what our fleshly minds cannot conceive now. In the end, the process of selection will be proven perfect if not humanely fair.

Selection and pre-destination are inevitable. If God did not communicate to us the fact there are people whom he had picked from the beginning, life itself is like a revolving staircase. Its just odd. For God knew E VE R Y T H I N G. When He selected the elect, He knew what hes doing, we didnt know how and why; nonetheless, He is God. Yes, it is a hard fact to accept but the process of selection has freed us from being jaded in a sanctuary of perpetual boredom and purposelessness. Jesus death and resurrection has accomplished all. Its as if white-washing a wall which tarnished throughout the years. Knowing that His redemption has answered every need and every lack, this is comforting to read. Can a genuine believer lose his salvation because of his misdeeds, sudden unbelief, etc.? Ryrie presented the cases that define the security of every believer. Though he presented a good amount of literature regarding the inimitable character of Gods love for us humans, the issue of the irrevocableness of salvation still remains in question. Ryrie refers to these questions as the problem passages which includes the highly-debated Hebrews 6:4-6. Hebrews 6:4-6 says it is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age, if they fall away, to be brought back to repentance, because to their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace. I couldnt blame Ryrie for putting this issue under the caption problem passages for Christians themselves are undivided when it comes to this. There are Christian groups who argue that salvation is permanent and irrevocable. There are those who believe that its conditional and revocable. And there are those who are in the middle ground. I would have agreed that it was indeed a problem passage if not for my total faith in Gods promise of salvation. I would always hold that salvation is irrevocable and this Hebrean verse isnt, in any way, problematic. It is very clear that this falling away does not happen in reality. For if a Christian would fall away, God would have taken his life already. The last part of Ryries synopsis tackles the condition of salvation. This is the part which I found very agreeable to read. I agree with Ryrie when he stated the facts about the conditions for salvation as well as the fallacies that behoves it. I believe that Gods grace alone that enabled me to receive forgiveness and eternal life. And one of its consequences is faith. We have faith because of Gods faith in us.

It is true that through the years, many elements have been added to construe the myth of attaining salvation. Ryrie mentioned the three false additions to faith as a condition for salvation: surrender, baptism, and repentance. Surrender, total submission to Jesus Christ, is a very good thing. God demands us to submit to Him. But here, I read that it is NOT a