Those that Oppose Themselves
2Ti 2:25 In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;
It is terribly sad to encounter those that oppose themselves. Very many people do this by rejecting the truth of Salvation by Sovereign Grace. Sometimes it will be one point of doctrine, or another, but in any case salvation by grace is opposed and in doing so they oppose the very truths that describe how God saved them. They lose out on many joys and much comfort that they could otherwise enjoy. While they will ultimately experience the eternal salvation with God in Heaven, they do not experience the peace afforded in this time world by the cleansing of the conscience and the assurance found in the knowledge of the sure work of Jesus Christ.
I still remember an early experience that I had of someone opposing themselves. I was coming into a knowledge of the truths of salvation by grace while still dwelling among those who believed in salvation by works, though they would not call it that. I had come across the texts in Romans that mention election, particularly Romans 9:11. I was wondering if this was the same as the choosing of God’s people that is mentioned in Ephesians 1:4. So, I asked our Youth Minister. Understand, he was a godly man and set a good Christian example. He was an ordained minister who had been to theological seminary, so I expected that I could make scriptural inquiries of him and get informed, scriptural answers. Instead, I experience the following. I asked him, “What is this election that I keep reading about in Romans?”. He replied, “It is like this: God casts a vote for you, the Devil casts a vote against you, and it is up to you to break the tie.” I was floored. Even with as little knowledge as I had at the time, I immediately recognized this as the most blasphemous thing I had ever heard! He had put God and Satan on equal footing, and had topped it off by making man higher than either of them. Needless to say, after I recovered from the shock of such a statement, I was quite disappointed in that I felt that I had just been lied to. I knew that he surely knew better, and if he did not then it did not say much for that seminary education. I had just experienced someone opposing themselves and realized that I dwelt among an entire people that opposed themselves. I was very disheartened and I knew I could not ultimately dwell happily among this group of believers, but I also had no idea where I could go. The answer to that question: the Primitive Baptists, would not come until years later.