Examining Patrick’s definition of Metanoia, and Calvin’s Calvinistic/Gnostic answer to the question, “how do I know if I “truly believed?”
Metanoia, a change of heart?!
In Patrick L’s message, “True Metanoia, Angels Of Light, And The Full Counsel Of Salvation (FCOS)” he attempts to establish the meaning of the word Metanoia as a “heart change” and uses this definition from Webster’s dictionary:
According to this dictionary entry, this is the cultural use of the word “metanoia” since 1577. Our culture has defines it as a “transformative change of heart” and a “spiritual conversion.” However, this is not the Biblical use of the word, which is what we should be concerned with..
The culture has been influenced by Catholicism’s Latin translation of the word metanoia, which became “penance” (from where we get repentance), and was loaded with works definitions. It was the Catholics who changed “change of mind” (metanoia) to “penance” and required works to evidence a truly “penitent heart” so that one could not be certain if they had really “repented”.
Even Webster’s entry acknowledges that the Greek etymology of the word is related to a change of mind. Patrick L confuses the situation further because he states that Meta means “beyond” the mind. It is true that Meta can refer to “beyond” as in Metaphyics. However, it is also equally true that Meta can refer to “change” as in “Metamorph” (change of form). The biblical use refers to the “change of mind.” Not “beyond the mind”. Patrick is playing with modern cultural definitions of the words to try to say that repentance is referring to the “heart” which is something he has yet to define.
Calvin: Calvinistic/Gnostic answer to the question, “how do I know if I truly believed?” Now I want to examine some points from Calvin’s comment on this video. This is not an attempt to insult Calvin, but to demonstrate that in his thoughts he is fully developing both Calvinistic and Gnostic views of salvation (which is what he accuses me of).
In the video I link below, I explain this in more detail, but here are some of my thoughts regarding hi-lited portions of his comment:
Only the Spirit enters Heaven
1. “the ONLY PART OF YOU that will enter Heaven and His Presence is YOUR REGENERATED SPIRIT that responded to His call IN THE FIRST PLACE AND IS JOINED WITH HIM!”
Since he’s going to stress this point till the “Cows come home,” let’s look at a couple of scriptures that contradict the notion that only the spirit enters God’s presence. I’m not sure that he is 100% certain why he is making this point, but as I state in the video, because he is given over to offense, he is systematically articulating not only untruths but fully developed heresies (doctrines of demons). From the scriptures below we see God’s full salvation is not only for the spirit but also for the body an the soul:
(1Th 5:23) And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Rom_8:23 And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.
(Php 3:20) For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.
(1Pe 1:8) Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:
(1Pe 1:9) Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.
Jas 1:21 Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.
A Gnostic/Calvinistic Definition of “truly believing the Gospel”
2. if you “truly” BELIEVE THE GOSPEL and have CHANGED YOUR MIND from mere “MENTAL ACCEPTANCE” of that gospel then you are BORN OF THIS SPIRIT and HE IS IN YOU so YOU WILL KNOW.
This is Calvin’s answer to the question, “how do I know whether I’ve believed in my heart or in my mind and have thus believed the Gospel?” His answer is that you will only know if you’ve “truly” believed the Gospel if you have changed your mind from mere “mental acceptance”. Then you will “KNOW” and born of the spirit. This is a circular answer that literally makes no sense. He’s attempting to say that “repentance” means to “change your mind” from mere “MENTAL ACCEPTANCE” of the gospel.
It’s as if he’s trying to combine Patrick’s definition of Metanoia (beyond the mind) with its actual meaning (change of mind) to say that you’re changing your MIND from believing with your MIND, so that you can truly “know.” Although Calvin and Patrick make the assertion that I have a Gnostic gospel (with no proof), this statement is reminiscent of the way a Gnostic would describe their concept of the “Divine Spark.” This idea is that there is a “portion of God” that resides within each human being (saved or not) and the Gnostic Christian tradition sees Christ as a “wholly divine being that has taken human form in order to lead humanity back to the light”.
Put together with Calvin’s insistence that only the regenerated spirit (and not the body) will enter God’s presence and this notion that “truly believing the Gospel” is the result “deeper knowing” that comes from changing your mind from mere “mental acceptance” , I can see that he is systematically developing his ideas in line with Gnosticism which he accuses me of. (I’m pretty sure Calvin doesn’t know what Gnosticism is).
Changing the Object of Faith (from the gospel to assurance of regeneration)
3. (true belief in the gospel) is the result of a fight to “TRAIN YOU TO BE ROCK STEADY AND ASSURED OF YOUR REGENERATED SPIRIT BY HIM IN YOU.”
Calvin here is changing the object of faith. It is no longer that I believe the Gospel that Jesus died for my sins and was raised for my justification, but I am “trained” to become “assured” of my regenerated spirit by “Him in me.” Then I can know if I “truly believed the Gospel.” Again, this is both Calvinism and Gnosticism as will be explained in the video linked below.
Calvin’s equivalent of “repentance of sins” – the end of self righteousness
4. you have to BELIEVE THE GOSPEL IN THE FIRST PLACE! THE MAJORITY DO NOT and will do so ONLY when they are AT THE END OF THEIR SELF RIGHTEOUSNES!”
I agree that the majority of people do not believe the gospel, but again, the gospel is that Jesus died for my sins and rose for my justification. Calvin is saying that believing that with “my mind” would be mere “mental assent” (calvinism), and instead I need to be trained to become “rock steady and assured of my regenerated spirit by Him in me”, and I won’t do this until I am at the “end of my self righteousness.” This is the equivalent of “repenting from all sins” in order to be saved. No one has ever reached the “end of all self righteousness.” As I say in the video, if you are offended if someone slanders you, you have not come to the end of your own righteousness, but are still living in self justification. Self righteousness is every bit a sin of the flesh as is lust and murder. Paul said in Philippians 3 that his pursuit was to be “found in Him (Christ) not having my own righteousness which is out of the law, but that which is out of God and based on faith.” He said that he had not attained this or been perfected at it, but this was his pursuit, and admonished those who were mature to be “thus minded” and if they were in other wise “minded” God would show it to them. However, even though Paul had not reached the “END OF HIS SELF RIGHTEOUSNESS” according to Calvin, he would have not “truly” have believed the Gospel.
4. Paul said it often “I am FULLY PERSUADED”.
Paul does use the phrase a couple of times. Consider:
Rom_14:5 One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.
Notice, the persuasion here is “in the mind”.
2Ti_1:12 For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day
What is Paul persuaded of? Is he persuaded by having “changed his mind” about “mental assent” and “truly believed” and “truly knowing” that God is in Him after coming to the “total end of self righteousness?” No, he is persuaded that He (Christ) is able to keep that which Paul committed to Him against that day. In other words His trust is in Christ (something outside of Himself), not in an inward knowledge of an inward experience that is “beyond the mind.”
(Rom 4:20) He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God;(Rom 4:21) And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform.
(Rom 4:22) And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness.
Here Paul is talking about Abraham, and what was Abraham persuaded of? That what God had promised He was able to perform. He simply trusted God’s promise – His word. Abraham was not regenerated, as Christ had not died, resurrected and sent the Spirit yet, and yet he was able to be fully persuaded that what God had promised, he was able to perform. And believing this, he was justified and righteousness was imputed to Him.
Imputed righteousness is a “credit” of righteousness to me without any works and apart from what I am. It is imputed to us when we are ungodly, in “uncircumcision” and without works just as it was to Abraham. Onthe basis of this imputation of righteousness, we are qualified to receive the Spirit, so that after we believed the Gospel (and were firmly persuaded in our mind just like Abraham concerning God’s word), we received the promise of the Spirit and were sealed.
Putting the Cart before the Horse: (backloading) Calvin states that we cannot truly believe until AFTER we have been fully persuaded that God is in us and that we have been regenerated. Again, this is exactly the argument of his namesake, John Calvin. Calvinists assert that you must be born again in order to believe. But the Bible tells us that we are regenerated and receive the Spirit BECAUSE we believe.
The Truth: “Truly believing” means that we are firmly persuaded (in our mind) that God’s word concerning His Son (that he died for my sins and was raised for my justification) is true. When we believe this, apart from any “change” in us (except in our mind), we are justified before God. Our faith is credited as righteousness. Then, after we are justified, we receive the Spirit (the “nanosecond” after we believe the Gospel) and are born of God. This is the exact opposite of the Gnostic Calvinism that Calvin is espousing. Again, I do not believe that he knows that he is espousing a highly systematized doctrine, as he would be appalled to find out that he is articulating the very doctrine he’s been fighting against for the last several years in his arguments with lordshippers. This leads me to believe that in his offense he is spouting out fully developed doctrines of demons.