The Staunch Calvinist

"Absolute sovereignty is what I love to ascribe to God." - Jonathan Edwards

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1 Timothy 4:10, 'Savior of all men'

...ed as well as the redeemed, and that is made clear by the last part of verse 10 by saying that He’s the Savior “especially of those who believe”. He not only cares for His elect as well as the reprobate, but He saves His elect in a special manner too. He saves them freely from His righteous wrath which justly falls on the wicked. The same wicked people who enjoyed God’s perseverance and mercy in their earthly life.

I think I’ve said enough. The commentaries below will say things in a better way than I could. Take a look.

Commentaries

Bob Utley in You Can Understand the Bible said:[1]

"who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers" The title "savior" is used quite often in the Pastoral Letters (cf. 1 Tim. 1:1; 2:3; 2 Tim. 1:10; Titus 1:3-4; 2:10-13; 3:4,6). In earlier chapters of 1 Timothy it is used of God as the Redeemer, potentially, of all mankind (cf. 1 Tim. 2:4,6; Luke 2:11; John 1:29; 4:42; Rom. 5:18-19; 2 Pet. 3:9). See full note at 2 Tim. 1:10. Possibly because of the little phrase "especially of believers" (where one would theologically expect "only") it may be used in its OT sense of Elohim, who is "protector" or "provider" of all life on earth (cf. Matt. 5:45; Acts 17:28).

A short comment is made by RC Sproul in the ESV Reformation Bible:[2]

4:10 Savior of all people. The general call to repentance and salvation is extended to all people (Matt. 11:28). See “Definite Redemption” at John 10:15.

especially of those who believe. Salvation is God’s gift, in particular to those who trust in His provision in Christ (Matt. 22:14; Rom. 8:30).

The ESV Study Bible explains:[3]

1 Tim. 4:10 to this end. The goal of Paul’s labors is that people attain “godliness” (v. 8) and its eternal “value.” Toil and strive is typical of Paul’s description of gospel ministry (cf. 5:17; Rom. 16:6, 12; 1 Cor. 15:10; 16:16; Gal. 4:11; Eph. 4:28). The statement that God is the Savior of all people, especially of those who believe could seem to teach universalism, that every person will eventually go to heaven. However, the rest of Scripture clearly denies this idea (see note on 1 Tim. 2:4). There are several other possible explanations for this phrase: (1) It means that Christ died for all people, but only those who believe in him are saved. (2) It means he is offered to all people, though not all receive him. (3) It means “the Savior of all people, namely, those who believe” (a different translation of Gk. malista, based on extrabiblical examples). (4) It means “the helper of all people,” taking Greek Sōtēr, “Savior,” to refer not to forgiveness of sins but to God’s common grace by which God helps and protects people in need. (5) It means “the Savior of all kinds of people, not Jews only but both Jews and Greeks.” In any case, the emphasis is on God’s care for the unsaved world, and in the flow of the letter Paul is stressing once more (cf. 2:3–5) that God’s will that people would be saved is the basis of the universal mission (cf. Matt. 28:19–20). On God as “Savior,” see note on ...


Hebrews 6:4-6, Apostasy and Calvinism

... New Testament. Commentary on Hebrews 6, here. He accepts that the descriptions describe a true Christian, but rejects that it is possible for a true Christian to apostatize.
  • Robert Jamieson, Andrew Robert Fausset, David Brown – Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible. Commentary on Hebrews 6, here.
  • Matthew Henry – Complete Commentary on the Bible. Commentary on Hebrews 6, here.
  • Bob Utley – You Can Understand The Bible (Not that explicit). Commentary on Hebrews 6, here and here.
  • John Owen – Exposition of Hebrews. Commentary on Hebrews 6, here.
  • Steven J. Cole – Lesson 17: When Repentance Becomes Impossible (Hebrews 6:4-8).
  • The passage describes regenerate believers who have fallen away:

    I have collected some commentaries, articles and sermons on this passage in a document which you can download (it does not include all the commentaries listed above).

    I believe that the passage speaks of false believers and warns about those who have sat under the preaching of the Word of God, the manifestation of the Spirit’s work and who themselves have professed to belong to Christ, that they will perish eternally without no possibility of true repentance. That the description is not definitive proof that those spoken of are true believers, yet the analogy in vv. 7-8 moves us to say that those spoken of were unbelievers from the start.

    I don’t claim that by me consulting articles and commentaries on this passage that I will have an answer to every question on this passage, but what I do want to claim is that there are interpretations which are credible and do not force us to deny other biblical doctrines (i.e., the Perseverance of the Saints).

    I do want to stress the context of Hebrews that it is an epistle written to Hebrew Christians steeped into the Old Testament and Israel’s history, therefore I will try to interpret it with this in mind and not try to make a modern application every time.

    Audience

    Who are the ones being described in this passage? Is the audience the ones being described in vv. 4-6? No, they are not. Rather, they are a different group spoken of in the third person (“those” v. 4, “them…they…their own” v. 6). The Author is not describing his present audience, in fact he explicitly says that in v. 9. Previous to this passage the author spoke of the plural “you” to the audience (e.g. Heb 5:11-13), including himself in 6:1 by using “us”. After v. 9 he speaks of the “beloved” and those who he encourages to “have the full assurance of hope until the end”. The warning is not about them, but about those who receive a clear light of God’s Gospel, make a profession of faith and appear to all to be true believers, yet later fall away. It is those who will not be brought to true repentance by God and be left in their sins to perish eternally.

    The audience the Author is writing to is one of Hebrew Christians in general who are being tempted to go back to the old Judaism and abandon their current religion. The Author throughout the letter shows that the New Covenant and its Mediator are better and they are the fulfillment of the promises and shadows in the Old Testament and therefore, there is nothing to go back to. The apostasy being spoken of here is that in which...


    1689 Baptist Confession Chapter 17: Of The Perseverance of the Saints - Commentary

    ... New Testament. Commentary on Hebrews 6, here. He accepts that the descriptions describe a true Christian, but rejects that it is possible for a true Christian to apostatize.
  • Robert Jamieson, Andrew Robert Fausset, David Brown – Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible. Commentary on Hebrews 6, here.
  • Matthew Henry – Complete Commentary on the Bible. Commentary on Hebrews 6, here.
  • Bob Utley – You Can Understand The Bible (Not that explicit). Commentary on Hebrews 6, here and here.
  • John Owen – Exposition of Hebrews. Commentary on Hebrews 6, here.
  • Steven J. Cole – Lesson 17: When Repentance Becomes Impossible (Hebrews 6:4-8).
  • The passage describes regenerate believers who have fallen away:

    I have collected some commentaries, articles, and sermons on this passage in a document which you can download (it does not include all the commentaries listed above).

    I believe that the passage speaks about false believers and warns those who have sat under the preaching of the Word of God, the manifestation of the Spirit’s work and who themselves have professed to belong to Christ that they will perish eternally without no possibility of true repentance if they do not have true faith. The description is not definitive proof that those spoken of are true believers, because the analogy in vv. 7-8 moves us to say that those spoken of were unbelievers from the start. I don’t claim that by me consulting articles and commentaries on this passage that I will have an answer to every question on this passage. But what I do want to claim is that there are interpretations which are credible and do not force us to deny other biblical doctrines (i.e., the Perseverance of the Saints). I do want to stress the context of Hebrews that it is an epistle written to Hebrew Christians steeped into the Old Testament and Israel’s history, therefore I will try to interpret it with this in mind and not try to make a modern application every time.

    Audience

    Who are the ones being described in this passage? Is the audience the ones being described in vv. 4-6? No, they are not. Rather, they are a different group spoken of in the third person (“those” v. 4, “them…they…their own” v. 6). The Author is not describing his present audience. In fact, he explicitly says that in v. 9. Previous to this passage the author spoke in the plural “you” to the audience (e.g. Heb. 5:11-13), including himself in 6:1 by using “us”. After v. 9, he speaks of the “beloved” and those whom he encourages to “have the full assurance of hope until the end”. The warning is not about them, but about those who receive a clear light of God’s Gospel, make a profession of faith and appear to all to be true believers, yet later fall away. It is those who will not be brought to true repentance by God and be left in their sins to perish eternally.

    The audience the Author is writing to is one of Hebrew Christians in general who are being tempted to go back to the old Judaism and abandon their current religion. The Author throughout the letter shows that the New Covenant and its Mediator are better and they are the fulfillment of the promises and shadows in the Old Testament and therefore, there is nothing to go back to. The apostasy being spoken...


    1689 Baptist Confession Chapter 31: Of the State of Man after Death and Of the Resurrection of the Dead - Commentary

    ... declaration to meet the Bridegroom (v. 6), what happens actually is “those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast” (v. 10). Meaning, the wise virgins, who were ready for their Bridegroom, went to meet the Bridegroom and together with Him went into the marriage feast. They did not meet Him and that’s the end. They met Him and went together to the marriage feast, as we will (cf. Rev. 19:6-9). The same idea is therefore to be taken for the Rapture in 1 Thessalonians 4. The believers do not stay in the air or in Heaven, rather, they go back to the same place from whence they came, i.e., the Earth, welcoming the King of kings and Lord of lords. Bob Utley notes on v. 17, “This is the Greek word apançsis, which is used in the sense of meeting someone and then accompanying them (cf. Matt. 25:6; Acts 28:15). So believers meet the Lord and return to a recreated earth with Him!”[13] Charles J. Ellicott writes:

    To meet the Lord in the air.—St. Chrysostom says: “When the King cometh into a city, they that are honourable proceed forth to meet him, but the guilty await their judge within.” The phrase “in the air” certainly does not mean “heaven.” The word “air”) in itself properly signifies the lower, denser, grosser atmosphere, in which the powers of darkness reign (Eph. 2:2); but here it is only used in contrast with the ground, and means “on the way from Heaven whence He comes,” of course not to dwell there, but to accompany Him to His Judgment-seat on the earth.[14]

    Therefore, contrary to the Dispensational idea, Christians will not be zapped to be saved out of the Tribulation, but the “catching up” (Rapture) of believers will occur after the tribulation, and after the Rapture believers and the King Jesus will descend to the earth. In summary, the last trumpet is blown, Christ the Lord descends, the dead in Christ are raised, the living believers are transformed, then Christ comes back to the earth with all his holy ones.


    §3 The Resurrection

    1. The bodies of the unjust shall, by the power of Christ, be raised to dishonour; the bodies of the just, by his Spirit, 2 unto honour, and be made conformable to his own glorious body. 4
      1. Dan. 12:2; John 5:28-29
      2. Rom. 8:1, 11; 1 Cor. 15:45; Gal. 6:8
      3. 1 Cor. 15:42-49
      4. Rom. 8:17, 29-30; 1 Cor. 15:20-23, 48-49; Phil. 3:21; Col. 1:18; 3:4; 1 John 3:2; Rev. 1:5

    The bodies of the unjust...shall be raised to dishonour and for punishment (Dan. 12:2; John 5:28-29). But the bodies of the just shall be raised unto honour by His Spirit (Rom. 8:11; Gal. 6:8) and they will be made conformable to His own glorious body (Phil 3:21; 1John 3:2). We will finally be like Jesus not only in character but also in the quality of our body!


    The General Resurrection Of The Dead

    We believe that Holy Writ teaches a singular resurrection from the dead of both the just and the unjust. Our reasoning is very simple actually: for example, when we read of the resurrection of the just, as we often do in detail (e.g. 1Thess. 4; 1Cor. 15), we do not assume that just because the Holy Spirit did not mention the resurrection of the wicked that it will take place sometime later. Our main point is that Scripture knows of a singular resurrection of the dead and Final Judgment of all people. Therefore, when we read of the resurrection of the righteous with no mention of the wicked, we assume that the resurrection of the wicked will take place at the same time. Now let us look to...


    God's Absolute Sovereignty: Resources used

    ...vific work, and man's nature
  • The Sovereignty of God, verses
  • Commentaries

    The Word software resources

    • The software can be downloaded from here.
    • Various modules can be download from here.

    Modules for the commentaries

    ...