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Author Topic: Faith Cometh By Hearing (spiritually)  (Read 1990 times)

Scot

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Faith Cometh By Hearing (spiritually)
« on: January 02, 2005, 06:35:09 PM »
Here's something that I was pondering today and I'm not sure of the answer yet. Since it is our spiritual ears that need to opened in order to believe the gospel, can someone be saved by hearing the gospel in a foreign language? If I was to read our translation of the scriptures to a chinese person who doesn't speak english, is there a possibility that God will open his spiritual ears so that he will believe? Or, does it have to be in the person's language so that they also physically hear and understand? Obviously, in the instance of a baby, God can save them even though they do not understand what is being said.

I'm interested in your comments.

Jimmy

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Re: Faith Cometh By Hearing (spiritually)
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2005, 01:31:54 AM »
Scot, I have also pondered such a question, I think it is possible that God could give those people spiritual ears to hear even in another language because His ways are so far beyond our ways. But Acts 2 comes to mind where those at Pentecost spoke in other tongues and every man heard in his own language. Im not sure if this relates or not.

Act 2:6
Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language.
Act 2:7
And they were all amazed and marvelled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galilaeans?
Act 2:8
And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born?


This also came to mind from 1 cor 14

1Cr 14:7
And even things without life giving sound, whether pipe or harp, except they give a distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known what is piped or harped?
1Cr 14:8
For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle?
1Cr 14:9
So likewise ye, except ye utter by the tongue words easy to be understood, how shall it be known what is spoken? for ye shall speak into the air.
1Cr 14:10
There are, it may be, so many kinds of voices in the world, and none of them [is] without signification.


This leads me to think that it is important if not necessary for the Word to be preached in ones own language so that they can understand.
But I see through a glass darkly.
Jimmy
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andreas

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Re: Faith Cometh By Hearing (spiritually)
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2005, 01:52:46 AM »
<<<If I was to read our translation of the scriptures to a chinese person who doesn't speak english, is there a possibility that God will open his spiritual ears so that he will believe>>>



13 "Wherefore let him that speaketh in an unknown tongue pray that he may interpret.
14 For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful.
15 What is it then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also.
16 Else when thou shalt bless with the spirit, how shall he that occupieth the room of the unlearned say Amen at thy giving of thanks, seeing he understandeth not what thou sayest?
17 For thou verily givest thanks well, but the other is not edified.
18 I thank my God, I speak with tongues more than ye all:
19 Yet in the church I had rather speak five words with my understanding, that by my voice I might teach others also, than ten thousand words in an unknown tongue."  1  Corrinthians.


andreas. 8)
kai ean diabainhs di udatos meta sou eimi kai potamoi ou sugklusousin se kai ean dielqhs dia puros ou mh katakauqhs flox ou katakausei Isaiah 43:2

John

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Re: Faith Cometh By Hearing (spiritually)
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2005, 11:54:08 AM »
Quote
<<<If I was to read our translation of the scriptures to a Chinese person who doesn't speak English, is there a possibility that God will open his spiritual ears so that he will believe>>>

The opening of our spiritual ears is part and parcel with regeneration. Our spiritual ears and eyes are in-effect connected to the life in our regenerated spirit. You can't have one without the other.

Notice, the act of regeneration is not dependent upon me, you, or the works of men. This is an act of God the Holy Spirit and is independent of our will. That means we do no cause it nor can we frustrate God from doing His desires upon us.

The spiritual ears are not telepathic ears, meaning, we hear spiritual truths through our normal senses -- but even so, the carnally minded person will not accept spiritual things, they are outside the domain of his ability to understand.

When Jesus said, "Listen if you have ears to hear", He means "if you have spiritual ears to hear", almost everyone has physical ears, but spiritual ears hear the heavenly things of God. If Jesus had spoken to the crowds in Celtic no one would have understood anything -- spiritual truths or otherwise.

You can read the Scriptures in Chinese to an Englishman but he will not understand it and will benefit nothing. It is not that the Scriptures magically transform our spirit -- that is the job of God. God doesn't regenerate people because we read to them, our works do not enter in. Our preaching, teaching, and reading of Scripture benefits us because it increases our understanding, sanctifies us, increases our faith, and leads us toward Christ-likeness. This is something that can only happen after regeneration, not before.

If I wrote this post in Hangul would you be edified? Would your faith grow? Would you come to understand some new spiritual truth? No! You would not understand anything (unless you're Korean). So two things to remember: 1) We do not save anyone and 2) spiritual understanding requires the message be first understandable, and then, that the hearer be regenerated.

We might also add that the understanding of spiritual truth is mediated by God -- every true Christian will grow at different rates and to different levels of understanding.

john
Si hoc signum legere potes, operis boni in rebus Latinus alacribus et fructuosis potiri potes!

Scot

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Re: Faith Cometh By Hearing (spiritually)
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2005, 02:03:10 PM »
Quote
So two things to remember: 1) We do not save anyone and 2) spiritual understanding requires the message be first understandable, and then, that the hearer be regenerated.

I have no problem with #1. I understand that fully.

I think I agree with #2 but then my question would be "What about a baby that has been saved?" They did not understand anything that was said yet they had to be under the hearing of the gospel in order to be saved. Spiritually they've been regenerated and their spiritual ears have been opened but physically they have no understanding yet.

Jimmy

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Re: Faith Cometh By Hearing (spiritually)
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2005, 04:56:14 PM »
It seems that John the Baptist may have been saved inside the womb. Do you know of any other babies in Scripture that were saved?
 Also there is the mentaly handicapped person who may not appear to have the understanding. I'm sure God can save them too if they are His.

Pro 20:12 The hearing ear, and the seeing eye, the LORD hath made even both of them.
Jimmy
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andreas

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Re: Faith Cometh By Hearing (spiritually)
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2005, 06:02:54 PM »
<<< Do you know of any other babies in Scripture that were saved?>>>


 5 "Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations".Jeremiah  1 

This applies to all the elect, and not just a few individuals.

andreas. 8)                         
kai ean diabainhs di udatos meta sou eimi kai potamoi ou sugklusousin se kai ean dielqhs dia puros ou mh katakauqhs flox ou katakausei Isaiah 43:2

Jimmy

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Re: Faith Cometh By Hearing (spiritually)
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2005, 07:42:39 PM »
Andreas,
<<5 "Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations".Jeremiah  1 

This applies to all the elect, and not just a few individuals.>>

I agree that in essence the elect are saved from before the foundation of the world. But I geuss the question would be, when is one  "born again" or "regenerated", thereby receiveing the "Faith" that is spoken of in Rom. 10 "Faith cometh by hearing" My understanding is that it is essential that one "Hear" the Word in order to become saved. Just as those Indian tribes that never had heard the Gospel before, by anyone that was "sent" to them. If they never heard the preaching of the Word then they were not Gods chosen people.  Surely God can cause one in the womb or a 1 year old child to hear (spiritualy) the word preached to them audibly.
Someone straighten me out if I'm missing something.
Jhn 3:8 The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.
I need to search the Scriptures more about this.
Jimmy
If Christ is in the boat we can smile at the storm

John

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Re: Faith Cometh By Hearing (spiritually)
« Reply #8 on: January 03, 2005, 10:59:26 PM »
Quote
"What about a baby that has been saved?" They did not understand anything that was said yet they had to be under the hearing of the gospel in order to be saved.

Saving a baby in the womb is as possible for God as saving an old man, a Down's Syndrome patient, a person in a coma, or any person in any condition. We must remember, we are not partners with God. He doesn't require us to do anything, hear anything, believe anything, speak anything, repeat anything, pray anything for us to be regenerated.

So then, someone will ask, "Why bother to do these things?" The manifestations of the fruit of regeneration are part and parcel with the activity of a living spirit. We don't hang apples on a tree on order to make it alive and we don't work works to make ourselves alive. Our life is in Christ and He works in and through us to do His will. His Spirit indwells us and leads us into truth. We have become a temple for the Living God. You and I can't do that by any works of our hands.

What does a baby have to do to be regenerated? Nothing, and that is the reason God is not restricted in who He regenerates. Salvation is a process, while regeneration is an instantaneous work of God our salvation includes more dimensions that continues right through our lives until we are glorified in our new bodies and joined with Christ in the New Heavens and New Earth.

Thus, salvation is a broad term that can mean different things depending upon what aspect of God's salvation program we are referring to. A baby is saved in the womb -- God declares the baby Righteous in Christ and the baby's spirit lives to good works in Christ. That is why the spirit of a six-month-old John the Baptist can leap in the womb of Elizabeth when Mary arrived carrying Jesus in her womb. John's spirit liveth toward his Savior.

Luk 1:41 And it happened as Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb.

We are under the gospel to increase in sanctification -- which is one aspect of salvation wherein we become increasing more Christ-like in our behavior and thinking. It is by the gospel we understand the things of God and conform ourselves to God's will. It is by the law of the gospel we can examine ourselves to see if we are legitimate sons of God or if our fruits are simply tacked on by our effort and we are deceived.

Because sanctification is an integral part of God's salvation plan we are normally fed by God through His word. In other words, God does not create a child of God and then let that child linger and starve for nourishment. He will providentially bring the gospel and the child of God together by whatever means He has decreed from the beginning of time. You know, God feeds the birds of the air and will He neglect His own children? 

Luk 12:24 Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap, having neither storehouse nor barn, and God feeds them. How much more are you better than the birds?

We are much more precious to God. We are cared for by God, clothed with His Righteousness and fed with His Spiritual word from our second birth until our Lord returns to complete our salvation.


john
Si hoc signum legere potes, operis boni in rebus Latinus alacribus et fructuosis potiri potes!

Melanie

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Re: Faith Cometh By Hearing (spiritually)
« Reply #9 on: December 06, 2018, 06:07:05 PM »
I do not think the passage speaks of saving faith, unless the WORD being spoken of is Christ. The faith of Christ saves us. Because if it was true we gain faith by the written word, no infant could be saved because they couldn't understand the word preached. Of course, I believe an infant can be saved by faith, and so the faith is not by the written word, but by the living Word (Christ). 

The only alternative I see is that the faith that comes by hearing the word is our "growth in faith," not "saving faith." Saving faith is a free gift of God. But our experiential faith is strengthened by the written word of God.

"But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren. Luke 22:32"

"Hearing of thy love and faith, which thou hast toward the Lord Jesus, and toward all saints; That the communication of thy faith may become effectual by the acknowledging of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus. Philemon 1:5-6"


I think that makes sense.

Robert Powell

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Re: Faith Cometh By Hearing (spiritually)
« Reply #10 on: December 07, 2018, 04:14:56 AM »
 )thinker(  OK, I follow you.

 


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