Can a true Christian lose his salvation? If he cannot, then is there a danger of moral liberty? It has been many years since a comprehensive book on the doctrine of eternal security has been published. The Reign of the Servant Kings, approaches the subject from a distinct and refreshing perspective which draws heavily from the viewpoints of both Calvinist and Arminian interpreters. Joseph Dillow gives us a powerful defense of the biblical teaching that salvation cannot be lost. However, he goes beyond doctrine to life.
What are the practical effects of such a doctrine? Setting his discussion in the broader context of the final significance of man, Dillow provides a highly invigorating and motivating framework for understanding the meaning of human life and how—and why—we should live in the Spirit. The author offers a perceptive analysis of the malaise affecting Western Christianity.
Spiritual lethargy and the quest for affluence have all but dominated our lives. Why? While the church has always been influenced by the surrounding culture, Dillow argues that this is not the only cause of our impotent witness. Many Christians have lost their spiritual motivation simply because they have no vision for the Great Future. Our pulpits have failed to challenge us with the ultimate significance of human life, participation with King Jesus in the final destiny of man. We do not live lives from an eternal perspective.
Historically, the problems of spiritual motivation have been addressed in two different ways. On the one hand, those of an Arminian perspective (believing that salvation can be lost) have warned the indolent of forfeiture of their justification. The heirs of the Westminster Confession, on the other hand, have challenged those who are lethargic in their commitments to re-examine their foundations, as they may not be saved after all. Dillow argues that the latter approach in particular has actually contributed to the very carnality against which it rails.
This controversial and paradoxical conclusion is carefully set forth in a sustained and reasoned appeal to the New Testament, in a thoroughly biblical alternative. Spiritual motivation is grounded in a sense of unconditional acceptance by God and the certainty that our lives have eternal significance. The Reign of the Servant Kings analyzes the certain salvation of the Christian. The issues of faith, assurance, eternal rewards, and spiritual motivation are interwoven into a stimulating look at the final destiny of man.
In the Logos edition, all Scripture passages in The Reign of the Servant Kings are tagged and appear on mouse-over, and all Scripture passages link to your favorite Bible translation in your library. With Logos’ advanced features, you can perform powerful searches by topic or Scripture reference—finding, for example, every mention of “salvation” or “2 Timothy 2:12.”
“Should the single intent of the original author be the primary determinant in our theological constructs? It seems that the answer to that question is obvious. Yes! If the intent of the original author does not determine meaning, then someone else’s intent, that of the interpreter, takes over, and all controls are lost.” (Page 27)
“The Protestant doctrine of the analogy of faith has, in practice, sometimes become what might be called ‘theological exegesis.’ What started as a valid attempt to allow other Scriptures to help interpret the meaning of obscure passages has gradually become a method of interpreting obviously clear passages in a way that will harmonize with a particular theological tradition. Instead of permitting each text to speak for itself, the theological system determines the meaning.” (Page 28)
“We are to become the servant kings. That is our destiny. This destiny was often called ‘salvation’ by the prophets.22 This was not a salvation from hell, but the glorious privilege of reigning with Messiah in the final destiny of man.” (Page 6)
“Now in 1 John, the context is overcoming the world by faith and, as a result, becoming regenerate. In Revelation, however, the context involves overcoming by deeds of obedience, and the result is merited rewards. All Christians are overcomers in the former sense, but not all are overcomers in the latter.” (Page 38)
“The analogy of faith, therefore, should only be viewed as one element of the exegetical process. It should not dictate our exegesis, substitute for exegesis, or simply be subsequent to exegesis. Rather, it is part of valid exegetical procedure, but its use should be postponed until a very late stage.” (Page 29)