I wish to express sincere thanks for the citation from St. John Chrysostom; I quoted this passage in my book:
“But what we beseech is that ye would receive the benefit and not reject the gift. Be persuaded therefore by us, and “receive not the grace in vain.” For lest they should think that this of itself is “reconciliation,” believing on Him that calleth; he adds these words, requiting that earnestness which respects the life. For, for one who hath been freed from sins and made a friend to wallow in the former things, is to return again unto enmity, and to” receive the grace in vain,” in respect of the life. For from “the grace” we reap no benefit towards salvation, if we live impurely; nay, we are even harmed, having this greater aggravation even of our sins, in that after such knowledge and such a gift we have gone back to our former vices.”
Freed from sins and made a friend — reminding me of, “Greater love has no one than …to lay down his life for his friends; and you are My friends if you do what I command.”
In no way can that refer to someone “never-saved”.
…“wallow in the former things”, "return again unto ENMITY". Even after such knowledge and such a gift to go back to former vices. In no way can that reflect "still saved’!
On Augustine, I stated that although he did espouse “Sovereign Predestined Salvation”, he also said that “no one can know if he’s really elected” (in spite of 1Jn5:11-13). Augustine erroneously perceived that saving-faith was a gift FROM God TO (certain) men, He even gave faith (but insufficient) to the unpredestined – my book discusses the real meanings of verses like Rom12:3, Eph2:8, 2Tim2:25 and others. (I will be delighted to discuss any of those or others here, if anyone wishes).
(…kind of appalling to perceive that God would give SOME faith to those He created to be wicked and to perish; impugning His character with “causality in sin”, and even casting Him as mean!)
The concept of “Sovereign Predestined Salvation”, as such, did not really exist until the mid 1500’s. Chrysostom’s comment above is typical of most ECF’s.
RE “Greek” – if there are any Greek scholars here, I would be very grateful to pick a few brains. For instance – on John3:3, I couldn’t figure out the usage of “Horao” in King James (Textus Receptus), as opposed to “Eido” in NASB (Nestle). A website I found stated that “eido” is the aorist form of “horao”. But in the accepted Greek, John wrote “idein” (rather than “oida”). Oida conveying more “perceive/know”, while in all 39 occurrences of “idein” it always means “behold/experience”.
Therefore, “Unless one is born again he cannot BEHOLD/EXPERIENCE the kingdom of God.”
This repeats in verse 5 “unless one is born of water (flesh!) and (also!) born of the Spirit, he cannot ENTER the kingdom.”
And repeats in verse 6, “that which is born of flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”
The whole dialog was to teach Nick that “yes we’re born of fleshly mothers, but we must also be born spiritually” — something Jesus rebuked Nick for being a teacher but not already knowing, verse 10!
So – anyone dispute “eido” as being aorist form of “horao”? And therefore the difference between KJV, and NASB?
Thanx in advance!