Thursday, February 23, 2012

Regeneration = Conversion

In the "Christian Doctrinal Advocate and Spiritual Monitor," an "Old School" or Hardshell periodical of the 1830s, a Hardshell writes the following about regeneration and conversion and demonstrates that today's Hardshells have departed from the faith of their founders.

The writer, Elder Elisha Andrews, wrote (emphasis mine):

"Thus stands the testimony of God of the inspired writers and of the ancient saints; and they all speak the same language and agree perfectly in the same point, that conversion, that is, a saving change from nature to grace, is a work of God, and emphatically the effect of divine graces. Here I might, with propriety, close up my argument, and conclude that the evidence is triumphant and incontrovertible. Nor do I see what can be said against it, unless some one should choose to distinguish between regeneration and conversion, and say that, although the former is the work of God, yet the latter is the work of the creature. All I have to say on the subject is, that the distinction is gratuitous, and wholly baseless; no such distinction is recognized by the sacred writers; they uniformly use these two words, as convertible terms; Neither do I conceive that, if we philosophize ever so much, we can make out any other distinction than there is between cause and effect: the production of a principle of holiness in the heart, and the active exercise of that principle. I suppose that, if Lazarus was raised from the dead by the miraculous power of Jesus Christ, and consequently acted, that is, performed the duties and functions of life, those acts ought to be considered as the effects of that miraculous, power, without which, they never would have existed..."  (page 181, see here)

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