An Eternal or a Temporary Reprobate?

9 Mar

There is a view which can be overwhelming to see. You seem to see yourself within an infinite spiral of reprobation, in which every trail a creature could ever imagine, forward and backward and all about world without end, is both preceded and answered by a greater and all-encompassing reality in which your position is hatred, sin, death, and a perfect role of unbounded damnation. (This is a picture of eternal reprobation.)

At this seemingly-complete view, you become speechless. Nothing seems to remain for you but a rational irrationality.

So that this fixture, this doleful circumstance, could only be superseded by an infinite person whose superseding creative ability could invent a previously-unimaginable new way out for you.

That person is of course Christ…

And your escape is encoded in these old words he did say: “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.” — There, in that statement, is the superseding hope, if you can see it.

Some Reprobation Is Temporary

It seems important to not misunderstand the definition of the word “reprobate”. In fact all created humans have been reprobate at one time; in your case, what you may be seeing and feeling and experiencing is temporal reprobation, which is simply the real state of all of humanity, though it’s not often felt.

So you cannot conclude that, because you see that you should by justice be eternally reprobate, that therefore your reprobation is eternal. There is an everlasting love (Jer. 31:3) which is able to overcome temporal reprobation. The individual at the Pool of Bethesda was sick for 38 years, to the point where he said “I have no man”. But a certain Man did come and cure him and commanded him to “Rise” (John 5:8). This same Man himself did rise from the dead in the same body he died in, which indicates that he himself will also raise certain others who were temporally reprobate. (“That very Man in the clouds of heaven”, as Bunyan called him.)

In her article here, , minister Pam Sheppard says to those who see and say they’re reprobate, “you are right”. And so it’s no use to hide from these sights or cover ourselves with ‘fig leaves’ (Gen. 3:7). But also she says that we reprobate sinners need not despair, because when the right time arrives, “God grants the reprobate the ability to overcome” and “He even causes us to receive the spirit of repentance.”

In stark contrast, modern-day apostate christianity has taught and continues to teach that sinners are not really reprobate and hence they can and must “choose Christ” in order to get his Holy Spirit, thus demanding from sinners the biggest fig-leaf-covering antics yet conceived, and setting them upon associated behaviors, such as embittering unbelieving prayer (which Christ specifically commanded against, Matt. 6:7), or passive suppression of their own livelihood in exchange for roleplaying as a ‘good person’ (Matt. 6:16). These beliefs and antics may still be embedded by habit in our souls if we’ve grown up in, or have been exposed to, today’s common heresies. And so a detox process may be necessary for us. And rare ministries such as Ms. Sheppard’s might be useful to us if we are struggling with the detoxing process.

I’ll wrap up with this — As an encouragement, it’s worth remembering the words of Spurgeon in his letter to Medhurst: “If the Lord had meant to destroy you, He would not have showed you such things as these.”

— Aaron, 2020/03/09

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