The Legacy of John Calvin – Part 1

John Calvin

Introduction

John Calvin’s day of birth 500 years ago on July 10, 1509 is a red letter day on the Protestants calendar this year. While many disillusioned clergy and congregates in the emergent church, who have lost their faith in the institutionalized church, are seeking new ways of interpreting the Bible and worshiping God, Calvinism has remained robust and alive in institutionalized Protestant churches.

In fact, many claim that Calvinism is experiencing an international resurgence. The most alarming fact about this resurgence is that Calvinism is finding a cozy niche in the Emerging Church, especially through its outreach to the youth, which makes it one of the vanguards in the establishment of the end-time one-world church. Michael Beck, a pastor of the Reformed Baptist Church in New Zealand says:

“There is currently a world wide resurgence of Calvinistic thought that is sure to have a growing influence upon the emerging church in New Zealand. This, in turn, is very likely to present the Reformed community with many unique ministry opportunities. So as to be ready for these, we should be both well informed and warmly engaged. ” (Read article here).

The question we should ask ourselves is: Has Calvinism saddled the Emerging Church horse with an intent to firmly take hold of the reins and steer the “horse” wherever it wills (no pun intended when you take into account that Calvinists reject the doctrine of free-will) or is it merely sitting on the “horse’s” back and allowing the “horse” to hold the reins in its mouth and allowing it to take Calvinism wherever it wills?

New Calvinism of which Mark Driscoll (pastor of Mars Hill Church in Seattle) is a leading figure, is not “new” in the sense of being different or novel. The term “new” in New Calvinism refers to a new generation embracing “old” or “genuine” or “original” Calvinism.

Even Rob Bell, one of the most influential pastors in the Emergent Church, urges the readers on page 182 of his book Velvet Elvis to read absolutely everything John Piper (a five-point Calvinist) has written. To entertain you with some of the things John Piper has written, allow me to draw your attention to the following brilliant contradiction.

We do not deny that all men are the intended beneficiaries of the cross in some sense . . . . . What we deny is that all men are intended as the beneficiaries of the death of Christ in the same way.

All of God’s mercy toward unbelievers – from the rising sun (Matthew 5:45) to the worldwide preaching of the gospel (John 3:16) – is made possible because of the cross. . . . Every time the gospel is preached to unbelievers it is the mercy of God that gives this opportunity for salvation. (Emphasis in original) (1) Christ’s death so clearly demonstrates God’s just abhorrence of sin that he is free to treat the world with mercy without compromising his righteousness.

In this sense Christ is the savior of all men. But he is especially the Savior of those who believe. He did not die for all men in the same sense . . . . The death of Christ actually saves from all evil those for whom Christ died “especially. [Emphasis in original] (2)

In some sense Calvinism may be called the IN SOME SENSE GOSPEL when the cross of Jesus Christ is applied to the reprobate and the IN THE SAME SENSE GOSPEL when it is applied to the elect. The “IN THE SOME SENSE GOSPEL” preached to the reprobate cannot possibly benefit the non-elect “IN THE SAME SENSE” it benefits the elect.

Think of it: two simple little letters in the alphabet, the “o” and the “a” determine where you are going to spend eternity – heaven or hell. If you belong to the “o” category Gospel (“some sense) you are doomed to eternal destruction in hell because it can never benefit you in the same way it benefits the “a” category (same sense) elected people.

If the preaching of the Gospel is to grant unbelievers in general an opportunity to be saved, how do we determine which is the “SOME SENSE GOSPEL” and which is the SAME SENSE GOSPEL” folk?

It shouldn’t be to difficult. Imagine Jesus preaching to the “some sense” folk and the “same sense” folk saying: “You and you and you and yes you too (don’t walk away) and the folk who are standing over there, please move to my left because I have determined before the foundation of the earth that you will be the “some sense” beneficiaries of my death.

What does that mean, you may ask. Well it simply means that you cannot benefit from my death on the cross “in the same way” my beloved chosen or elect are benefitting from it. They are the ones I will now draw in power and monergistically to my right.

Let us now take a look at the “old” Calvinism which the new generation is embracing under the tutorship of leading Calvinists. Calvin’s major contribution to the Christian church is his Institutes of the Christian Religion, first published in 1536.

Though many staunch Calvinists regard him as the most ingenuous expositor and defender of the Christian faith, there are others who cannot stomach some of the means he used to defend the Christian faith, such as the murder of Servetus. Enough has been written about his dictatorial behaviour in Geneva and it is not my intention to expound on the way he governed the church.

My main objective is to evaluate his sotereology (doctrine of redemption) in the light of the Word of God. It is on this particular topic, the appraisal of Calvin’s doctrine of redemption, that I want to appeal to my readers to bear with me and also to take into account that I am not focusing my discourse on individuals but merely trying to obey God’s Word by being a Berean and to see whether Calvin’s teachings and of those who follow him are in harmony with God’s Word.

Our duty as Christians is to thoroughly examine any doctrine tied to the name of a man who claims to have had divine inspiration. The most hideous crime against humanity is to misrepresent the most holy Triune God and the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross; nothing equals it’s dreadfulness because it “shuts the Kingdom of heaven in men’s faces” (Matthew 23:13). No wonder the Bible warns that whosoever does not speak according to His Word is void of any light.

To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word , it is because there is no light in them. (Isaiah 8: 20-KJV)

Am I suggesting that Calvinists are not saved? No! Absolutely not. Countless individuals have been saved by the grace of God the moment they put their trust in Jesus Christ and his finished work on the cross before they embraced Calvinism.

Nevertheless, the countless individuals who have been saved before they willingly inherited the legacy of John Calvin, does not sanction his core teaching that God predestined some to eternal bliss and others to eternal damnation and neither does it minimize the fact that countless individuals could have been saved had they not been shut out of the Kingdom of Heaven by a doctrine that misrepresents the God of the Bible.

Paul, unquestionably the greatest missionary of all time, never danced to the most popular heretical tunes of his time; he often wielded the Sword of the Spirit swiftly and accurately (Galatians 1:8 and 9).

The slightest diversion from the Gospel of Jesus Christ wounded him deeply, even to the extent that he often wept very bitterly. His constant agony over his Jewish brethren made him express the wish to be damned in their place. In my rebuttal to Bob de Waay, who wrote an article entitled “Recovering Reformation Theology,” I responded as follows:

Moses’ and Paul’s compassion for lost souls upsets John Calvin’s doctrine of selective and predestined redemption.

Calvinists claim that the doctrine of predestination is a Pauline doctrine. I have often wondered why Paul preferred to be accursed (separated) from the eternal presence of God for the sake of his reprobate Jewish brethren (Romans 9: 1-3) whilst he should have known that they were the accursed of God (doomed to a predestined eternal suffering in hell), even before the foundation of the world -simply because it was God’s good pleasure to do so.

As such Paul was in direct conflict with God’s sovereign will and decree and guilty of downright disobedience. On the other hand, it may be that he was completely ignorant of the doctrine of predestination which the Calvinists’ claim originated with him.

Hadn’t he been so oblivious of God’s sovereign decree to damn all the reprobate, simply because it was His good pleasure, he would probably never have had any desire for His “reprobate” brethren to be saved and would never have expressed the desire to be damned in their behalf.

We should bear in mind that Paul vigorously and single-mindedly expressed the desire to imitate His Master in all things and even once declared that he, together with all Christians throughout the ages, have the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2: 16).

It simply means, they ought to think and act upon the same principles of love, compassion, longsuffering and graciousness Christ fostered in His own heart when He was on earth.

If Paul and his brethren throughout the ages truly “have/had the mind of Christ,” they too should have taken pleasure in the autonomously decreed damnation of the reprobate and cheerfully obeyed and supported God in His divinely ordained ruling to damn all the reprobate.

Was Paul disobeying God’s sovereign decree to pleasurably damn all the reprobate to hell when he expressed the profound wish to be damned himself so that, if it were possible, all his reprobate brethren could be saved?

One may conclude that Paul’s was a case of the sovereignly elected who for the sake of the sovereignly non-elected passionately desired to become a sovereignly chosen non-elected so that the sovereignly decreed non-elected could be saved. In similar fashion, Moses begged God to blot his name out of his book He had written for the sake of his eternally and sovereignly decreed reprobate brethren (Exodus 31: 32).

The contention, of course, may be that neither Paul nor Moses referred to the children of the flesh (unsaved or non-elect) but the children of the promise whom God had elected unto salvation before the foundation of the earth.

That would turn an oxymoron into an even sillier “oxy-moronic” conclusion, for why would the elect want to be eternally accursed on behalf of the elect while they knew that the elect were sovereignly elected unto salvation before the foundation of the world, and that they would all unreservedly be saved because if they weren’t . . . God would be a dismal failure?

Why would anyone want to go to hell for the sake of those who were elected to go to heaven before the foundation of the earth? Both these scenarios- to be accursed for the non-elect or the elect – are, to say the least, an absolute absurdity.

What is Calvinism?

Calvinism in a nutshell:

  • It is clear that Christ did not die to make redemption a mere possibility; He died to actually save people.
  • God’s purpose cannot fail (Job 42:2; Isaiah 46:10).
  • Therefore every single person for whom He died, shall be saved.
  • Nevertheless, not all people are saved.
  • Consequently Christ did not die for all people. If it were true that He died for all people He would have been a failure.

The abovementioned conclusions are based on the assumption that man does not have a free-will in regard to his/her salvation. Any degree of free-will on the part of mankind would, according to Calvinist thinking, thwart God’s purpose and belittle his sovereignty to choose whomsoever He wants to save and whomsoever He wants to damn.

This is not only a gross misrepresentation of God’s sovereignty but also a distortion of the fact that man was created in His image. If God is the essence of love, which of course He is, and if his righteousness, justice and love are inseparably intertwined, which of course it is, then it would be unreasonable of Him to force his creatures into a relationship of love and obedience to Him.

The connubial relationship between a man and a woman is singularly the best proof that man was indeed created in the image of God. It not only exemplifies the fact that love can only be defined as true love when it is expressed in a reciprocal partnership, but also the deep truth that Jesus Christ’s Bride submits to Him in love, respect, adoration and worship because she truly loves Him from a heart that chooses to love Him for who He really is.

In order for his Bride to have learned who He really is, she must have come to a knowledge of Him and especially the knowledge of His sacrificial love as He expressed it on his cross. This is precisely why Jesus once said: “And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent” (Johan 17:3).

In spite of this, the Calvinists assert that God autonomously, arbitrarily and monergistically saves sinners on the basis that He chose them unto salvation before the foundation of the earth and that they have no will toward their redemption because they are dead in their sins and totally inept to understand, to know or to believe the Gospel.

The relationship between Christ and all the believers are often likened to a marital relationship between a man and a woman and there is a beautiful narrative in the Old Testament which typifies this relationship. There is no need to go into all the detail but suffice is to say that when Abraham sent his bond servant to find a wife for his son Isaac, Rebecca was not forced to go with him. She was asked whether she was willing to go with him.

And her brother and her mother said, Let the damsel abide with us a few days, at the least ten; after that she shall go. And he said unto them, Hinder me not, seeing the LORD hath prospered my way; send me away that I may go to my master. And they said, We will call the damsel, and enquire at her mouth. And they called Rebecca, and said unto her, Wilt thou go with this man? And she said, I will go. (Genesis 24: 48-59). (Emphasis added).

Would or could Rebecca have become Isaac’s wife if she had not been willing to leave her family and accompany Abraham’s servant? Are you married? If so . . . did you force your wife to marry you without allowing her to exercise her own free-will, or did you marry her because she had a mutual love for you?

Marriage is definitely not a one-sided arrangement. . . . or, did you first force your loved one to marry you and then irresistibly place the love you wanted her to have for you in her heart?

If you should agree that she had a mutual love for you which she exercised willingly prior to your marriage, why do you expect God to do far less than you, a mere human being? Because God is the essence of love, He will never monergistically impose or force his love on anyone. It is for this reason that man was given a free-will – to either love God with all his heart, mind and strength or to reject Him with all his heart, mind and strength.

Enforced love is no love at all. The notion that Christ did not die for all people but only for the elect who, by virtue of their total depravity, are completely unable to exercise. faith prior to their salvation, suggests that Christ’s crucifixion saves the elect automatically. Perhaps it would not be wrong to say that only elected automatons are  automatically saved by the crucifixion.

To some this may be something of an obnoxious over simplification . . . . but is there another way of explaining the core doctrine of Calvinism? What does the Word of God say?

Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please and be satisfactory to Him. For whoever would come near to God must [necessarily] believe that God exists and that He is the rewarder of those who earnestly and diligently seek Him [out]. (Emphasis added)

“It is written” and “it is also written” are perhaps two of the most important and yet eschewed phrases in Scripture, at least as far as sound discernment is concerned. The well-known saying “every heretic has his own pet Bible verse” may be true but it is equally true that the phrase “it is also written” is one of the best ways to combat heresy. The Lord Jesus Christ used it against the devil when he tempted Him in the desert and every Christian should follow his example.

Mat 4: 5-7 Then the devil took Him into the holy city and placed Him on a turret (pinnacle, gable) of the temple sanctuary.And he said to Him, If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down; for it is written, He will give His angels charge over you, and they will bear you up on their hands, lest you strike your foot against a stone.Jesus said to him, on the other hand, it is written also, You shall not tempt, test thoroughly, or try exceedingly the Lord your God.

Many Christians are too easily convinced or bowled over by people who deftly quote Scripture without first evaluating the quoted sections with other similar passages in Scripture and to declare, as did Jesus, “it is also written.” In fact, the mark of a spiritually mature Christian is that he never takes everything for granted and always tests the things other people say, even when they back it up with Scripture.

1 Cor 2:15 But the spiritual man tries all things [he examines, investigates, inquires into, questions, and discerns all things], yet is himself to be put on trial and judged by no one [he can read the meaning of everything, but no one can properly discern or appraise or get an insight into him].

Calvinists are particularly adroit in their use of certain elected passages in Scripture to prove to you that man is unable to make the right choices in regard to his salvation.

How can he when he is an automaton with no free-will of his own? One of their pet passages is Romans 3:10-12 where Paul says that no one seeks God. Yet Scripture also encourages sinners in equally important passages (Hebrews 11:6; Deuteronomy 4:2; Jeremiah 29:13) to seek God with all their hearts and that when they seek Him thus, they will find Him.

It stands to reason that Paul’s reasoning in Romans 3:10 to 12 is not to convince you that man is entirely unable to seek God but that he, due to his deeply ingrained self-centeredness, has no desire to seek after God. We find the very same reasoning in Job 21.

Job 21: 7-14 Why do the wicked live, become old, and become mighty in power? Their children are established with them in their sight, and their offspring before their eyes. Their houses are safe and in peace, without fear; neither is the rod of God upon them. Their bull breeds and fails not; their cows calve and do not miscarry.

They send forth their little ones like a flock, and their children skip about. They themselves lift up their voices and sing to the tambourine and the lyre and rejoice to the sound of the pipe. They spend their days in prosperity and go down to Sheol (the unseen state) in a moment and peacefully. Yet they say to God, Depart from us, for we do not desire the knowledge of Your ways. (Emphasis added).

Complacency, utter self-centeredness and smugness are the reasons for man’s rejection of God and his ways and not a complete powerlessness or an inability to seek Him. God’s warning in Deuteronomy 6 is a stern reminder of God’s divine jealousy.

Deut 6:10-12 And when the Lord your God brings you into the land which He swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give you, with great and goodly cities which you did not build, And houses full of all good things which you did not fill, and cisterns hewn out which you did not hew, and vineyards and olive trees which you did not plant, and when you eat and are full, Then beware lest you forget the Lord, Who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.

If a complete inability to seek God was at the heart of man’s problems, God’s innate righteousness to judge impartially would have been at stake. Why would He encourage mankind to seek Him with all their heart when He had already decided before the foundation of the world to predestine the elect to an eternity of bliss in heaven and the non-elect to an eternity of suffering in hell?

In both cases the word “seek” inevitably becomes a complete misnomer. It loses it’s meaning altogether. According to Jesus’ indictment in John 3:18 to 21 fallen man’s refusal to seek Him does not stem form an innate inability to seek Him but from a rebellious stubbornness to come to His light so that their evil ways may be exposed and reproved.

John 3:18-21 He who believes in Him [who clings to, trusts in, relies on Him] is not judged [he who trusts in Him never comes up for judgment; for him there is no rejection, no condemnation-he incurs no damnation]; but he who does not believe (cleave to, rely on, trust in Him) is judged already [he has already been convicted and has already received his sentence] because he has not believed in and trusted in the name of the only begotten Son of God. [He is condemned for refusing to let his trust rest in Christ’s name.]

The [basis of the] judgment (indictment, the test by which men are judged, the ground for the sentence) lies in this: the Light has come into the world, and people have loved the darkness rather than and more than the Light, for their works (deeds) were evil.

For every wrongdoer hates (loathes, detests) the Light, and will not come out into the Light but shrinks from it, lest his works (his deeds, his activities, his conduct) be exposed and reproved.

But he who practices truth [who does what is right] comes out into the Light; so that his works may be plainly shown to be what they are-wrought with God [divinely prompted, done with God’s help, in dependence upon Him]. (Emphasis added).

The above serious indictment certainly proves that man is not impervious to the fact that he desperately needs to seek God; indeed, he refuses to seek God because he hates the light. He lives and operates in the dominion of the kingdom of darkness (this present world system) of which Satan is presently the god and has no desire to seek out God’s light so that his evil deeds may be seen for what they really are.

They shun God’s global invitation to come to Him so that their sins may be dealt with according to His divine requirements, and rather tells Him “Depart from us, for we do not desire the knowledge of Your ways.”

Salvation begins in a heart that contritely and humbly bows to the requirements of God’s Word which may be summed up in these words – willingness, acknowledgment, confession and whole-hearted responsiveness. Jesus once said that only those who know and acknowledge they are “sick” will acknowledge that they need a physician (Mark 2:17).

The sad irony is that everyone is desperately sick (Romans 3:23) but most people refuse to acknowledge that they need a physician. The Holy Spirit is ceaselessly working to convince the entire world of sin, righteousness and judgment (John 16:8) but the majority deliberately shut Him out or seek other ways to enter into God’s presence.

In spite of man’s ability to understand and believe the Gospel but callously refuses to respond in faith to God’s global invitation to repent and believe the Gospel (Mark 1:15), Calvinism insists that man is totally depraved (dead in sin and trespasses) and consequently powerless to respond in faith to the requirements of the Gospel.

The only alternative, therefore (an alternative that does not jeopardize God’s sovereignty, they say) is to quicken only the elect arbitrarily and autonomously without them having to have faith in the Gospel and subsequently (after their regeneration) to be given faith as a gift. Below is a presentation of the Calvinists’ view of redemption and the biblical rendition thereof.

CALVINISM

WORD OF GOD

Total Depravity: Dead in sin and trespasses. Unable to understand and respond to the Gospel Dead in sin and trespasses. Listens and hears the Gospel
God intervenes autonomously in the life of the elect without conviction of sin, righteousness and judgment. Holy Spirit convicts of sin righteousness and judgment
Autonomous (monergistic) regeneration of the elect by a sovereign intervention of God (Faith not involved) Convicted sinner responds in faith to the Gospel, comes to the Light of the world (Jesus Christ) and confesses his/her sins and lostness
God autonomously grants the elect the gift of faith subsequent to their autonomous or monergistic regeneration. Repentant sinner receives forgiveness for his/her sins and is cleansed by the blood of Christ
The elect begin to believe the Gospel Holy Spirit indwells repentant sinner. Thanksgiving and rejoicing
Sanctification (Perseverance of the saint)

Sanctification(Life-long work of the Spirit together with the saint’s obedience to God and his Word)

Is John Calvin’s ‘Calvinism’ a vile doctrine?

England’s King James who was by no means an Arminian expressed his repugnance of the doctrine of  predestination as follows:

This doctrine is so horrible, that I am persuaded, if there were a council of unclean spirits assembled in hell, and their prince the devil were to [ask] their opinion about the most likely means of stirring up the hatred of men against God their Maker; nothing could be invented by them that would be more efficacious for this purpose, or that could put a greater affront upon God’s love for mankind than that infamous decree of the late Synod . . . .  (Read here)

John Wesley said:

The doctrine of predestination as maintained by rigid Calvinists is very shocking, and ought utterly to be abhorred, because it changes the most holy God with being the author of sin. (Read here).

Make your own assessment of Calvinism when we are going to evaluate its doctrines in the light of Scripture in the next few commentaries. Meanwhile, you may be interested to read the following article on Calvin and his horrendous murder of Servetus here .


(1) John Piper and Pastoral Staff, :Tulip”: What we believe about the Five Points of Calvinism: Position Paper of the Pastoral Staff” (Desiring God Ministries, 1998), 14 (2) Op Cit, 14-15

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Tom Lessing (Discerning the World)

Tom Lessing is the author of the above article. Discerning the World is an internet Christian Ministry based in Johannesburg South Africa. Tom Lessing and Deborah Ellish both own Discerning the World. For more information see the About this Website page below the comments section.

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Burning Lamp

Debs, I will be complying with Sylesa’s demands that I quote chapter and verse so I hope she will stick around long enough to receive that. I am going to look past her rants and demands for “exegesis” which by the way consists of different forms and types. She insinuates that I present myself as a Bible scholar or authority, and I have tried to make it clear that I have not done so. I have just visited and revisited this issue over the years and have settled it in my mind long ago along with other basics of the faith according to God’s Word and the principles contained therein. This issue has more to do with SALVATION and therefore I am going to take the time to gather the pertinent Scriptures not only for Sylesa’s benefit but for any others who might be lurking and taking in this controversy.

So I am giving notice that I am putting this together and will have it available either later today or tomorrow and depending upon when your schedule permits moderation.

Stay tuned……………………..

Deborah (Discerning the World)

sylesa

I am not conversing with you on this subject. She has already apologised, why won’t you accept it, but no, you carry on and on and on.

The entire issue is about DOCTRINE. And BL is not going to budge and ‘see’ your point of view on anything calvinistic and their am I.

You keep asking for scripture, again I tell you that there is an entire article full of scripture EXPLAINING why Calvinism is WRONG – you have read it and ignored it – what more must we pull out of our hats for you? You are dead set on following a doctrine that sets YOU ABOVE others. Well, go for it girl. I am tired of trying to explain it to.

Deborah (Discerning the World)

BL

I wish you the best of luck 🙂

sylesa

[EDITED by DTW: This is just a note to let you know that if you don’t keep your comments to the topic from now on with scripture to back up your arguments I will delete your comments.]

Burning Lamp

Debs, you are right, you have posted much scripture and that is one reason I didn’t see the need to take the time to repeat as I didn’t think it would do any good. But for the Lord’s sake I am willing to try and maybe, just maybe something will ring a bell and the Holy Spirit will enlighten. But then again, there has to be an open mind.

I am sorry that Seleysa has such a distorted picture of me – she thought the verse I quoted from 1 Corinthians was wrong? I have always taken that verse to apply to myself that I qualify as a weak vessel but thankfully God can use even me.

Also, I never said that we are not to study the Bible!! Of course we are. But there are those who are scholars who examine every jot and tittle and that is not the average person. Even simple folks can understand the Word because the Holy Spirit is the teacher and will meet us where we are. Of course I love to study the Word!!

That is exactly what I will be taking time out of my schedule to do so and I am doing it out of love for the Word and love for His truth. Not trying to pat myself on the back – better make that clear! Seems everything I say only makes things worse.

Better get back at it………………

sylesa

Deborah,
This may be a 2 part post, not sure.
First of all i think that basic to the belief in election is the belief in the sovereignty of God. This world is the work of His Hands and all that goes on in this world is all within the divine councel of God. There are things that belong to us to understand , and there are things that belong to God that He has not revealed to us,

[EDITED by DTW: Deleted X number of verses. We know all the verses in the bible pointing to the Sovereignty of God Sylesa, you don’t have to list all the verses for us. We believe HE IS SOVEREIGN, in fact (because you agree with Jeff) we believe HE IS MORE SOVEREIGN than you do. Regarding John 6, I have already given you the answer to the question, I wont repeat myself.

An extract from Jeff’s comment that you have already read: http://www.discerningtheworld.com/2010/10/13/unconditional-election-and-total-depravity-are-gnostic-teachings/#comment-127906

Jeff

1 – Is God Sovereign? DTW: YES
2 – If so…How Sovereign is He? DTW: Sovereign enough to give mankind FREE WILL 🙂

9 – What, in light of your insistence that we choose God (as opposed to the reverse), do you do with John 6, when Christ says to the 12 after His teachings have caused many of His “disciples” to reject Him, “And He said, “Therefore I have said to you that NO ONE can come to me unless it is granted to him by the Father”?

DTW: Look up the word “draw” here in verse 44 in the original language, you might find it shocking–it means literally to drag.

Joh 6:43 Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves.
Joh 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
Joh 6:45 It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me.

Isn’t it just kosher for the Calvinists to hone in onto their own pet verses to substantiate their views while they conveniently disregard other verses from Scripture? The above Scripture simply means that there is none other than the Father who can draw sinners to Christ because there is no other way than through HIS cross that He CAN do it. And that is precisely why Jesus said:

John 12:32 And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.

Are the “all men” in this verse only the elect? Does “all” mean that every single person will be saved? No. It simply means that no man will ever be able to circumvent His cross. However, to some it is the power and wisdom of God unto eternal bliss in heaven and to others it is mere foolishness unto eternal damnation in hell. Are the latter the reprobate who had been elected unto eternal damnation before the foundation of the earth? No! certainly not; they will be cast into hell because they willfully reject the cross as God’s power and wisdom.

]

Deborah (Discerning the World)

BL

I do understand totally. If anything, maybe there is someone else out there reading (and believe me there are many) who will benefit!

Burning Lamp

I will take each section separately starting with Total Depravity. This is by no means an exhaustive study of the topic, but there should be ample references and some many very well overlap with those you have previously posted. Unconditional Election will follow in a day or so.

Total Depravity

There is no question but that the Bible teaches we are totally depraved, but it does not teach total inability to make moral and spiritual choices.

There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7 This man came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all through him might believe. 8 He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. 9 That was the true Light which gives light to EVERY MAN COMING INTO THE WORLD. John 1:6-9 In John 1:9 we are told about Jesus, “That was the true Light, which lighteth EVERY MAN that cometh into the world.”

So as you can see John was a light, but not THAT Light, and EVERY MAN in the world has light from God and from Christ, and so could be saved.

We are born totally depraved, but the Lord Jesus gives ENOUGH LIGHT TO EVERY MAN to make him responsible to hear and to reject or accept the Gospel of the Son of God.

So that little spark called conscience proves God gives inward light so one can choose right on issues of moral and spiritual duty. Men are not so predestined that they must sin or must reject Christ. God has given light to all men and seeks to draw all men to Himself: Gen. 6:3; Ps. 79:7-3; Ps. 98:2-3; Prov. 1:22-23; John 1:9; John 12:32; John 16:8; Rom. 1:18-25; Titus 2:11; 1 Tim. 2:3-6

He gives light through conscience. Look at Romans 2:11-16: FOR THERE IS NO PARTIALITY WITH GOD.
12 For as many as have sinned without law will also perish without law, and as many as have sinned in the law will be judged by the law 13 (for not the hearers of the law are just in the sight of God, but the doers of the law will be justified; 14 for when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do the things in the law, these, although not having the law, are a law to themselves, 15 who show the work of the law written in their hearts, THEIR CONSCIENCE ALSO BEARING WITNESS, and between themselves their thoughts accusing or else excusing them) 16 in the day when God will judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ, according to my gospel.

For every idle word men shall come to judgment, Jesus said (Matt 12:36). And Revelation 20:12 tells us that the unsaved dead will be judged ACCORDING TO THEIR WORKS” which are meticulously recorded. Does not that prove that in moral matters man is accountable and must choose?

In John 12:32 did the Lord Jesus say, “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw a FEW men unto Me”? NO, HE DIDN’T SAY THAT. Instead, He said, “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw ALL men unto me.”

Notice John 5:40. Does this verse say,”And you will not come to Me, because you are not one of the elect”? HE DIDN’T SAY THAT. Rather He said, “But you are NOT WILLING to come to Me that you may have life. ” It is not that they were not elected; it was that they WOULD NOT COME.

“God… now commandeth ALL men every where to repent” (Acts 17:30). Can anyone accuse God of commanding people to do what He has made it impossible for them to do?

Romans 2:11-16 says: FOR THERE IS NO RESPECTER OF PERSONS WITH GOD. For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without law: and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law; (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified. For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves: Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another,) In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel.”

Does that not mean that EVERY person in the world is warned from God, either by the Word or by God speaking through the law He has written in their hearts, that is, their CONSCIENCES?

All who seek more light find enough light even as Cornelius did in Acts 10.

The Bible pictures man as a free moral agent capable of choice, he is morally responsible as Psalm 19:1-4 tells us:

1 The heavens declare the glory of God;
And the firmament shows His handiwork.
2 Day unto day utters speech,
And night unto night reveals knowledge.
3 There is no speech nor language
Where their voice is not heard.
4 Their line[a] has gone out through all the earth,
And their words to the end of the world.

So there is a speech in nature to turn men to seek God. It speaks in all the world and EVERY MAN is therefore accountable to God for it.

Deborah (Discerning the World)

BL

That is brilliant, thank you. That little thing called a CONSCIENCE!

sylesa

Deborah and burning lamp<
YOU JUST DELETED MY ENTIRE POST TO PROVE MY POINT AND POSTED BURNING LAMPS????? sO IN OTHER WORDS , YOU KNOW THAT I AM RIGHT AND THAT IS WHY YOU DELETED MY ENTIRE POST?????
I WILL POST WHAT I PUT UP ON ANOTHER BLOG FOR ALL TO SEE WHAT YOU DELETED

sylesa

[EDITED by DTW: DELETED]

Deborah (Discerning the World)

Sylesa

You do that, because all you did was list a whole bunch of verses on the Sovereignty of God. That’s not an Exegesis. You were asked to explain TOTAL DEPRAVITY. And your comment was BEFORE Burning Lamps, therefore it was not an answer to her comment on TOTAL DEPRAVITY. I had not approved her comment, so there was no ways you could have known what she was going to say.

And I did not delete you comment because I think you are right, I deleted it because it was a waste of space and you are insulting my intelligence by listing verses explaining the sovereignty of God when you know fully well I believe He is. You also agreed with Jeff’s comment that MY GOD IS SMALL in comparison to his. In other words you have CLEARLY drawn the line that we believe two different faiths, two different gods. (http://www.discerningtheworld.com/2010/10/13/unconditional-election-and-total-depravity-are-gnostic-teachings/#comment-127906)

Make sure when you comment on the other blogs that you place links back to this blog mkay? And make sure you tell the truth, God is watching to see the CHOICES you make.

sylesa

[EDITED by DTW: Deleting your comments does not mean I am afraid of something, it means I am tired of reading the same nonsense over and over again and it’s a waste of time of energy. This blog is here is speak the TRUTH, not here for people to spread their lies because they don’t understand scripture and when shown the truth even then refuse to listen. Come up with a REAL exegesis Sylesa, not a list of verses and I will post it. You were the one who wanted the exegesis, well do one.]

sylesa

[EDITED by DTW: Get to it Sylesa, shouting at me is not making things better]

sylesa

BY THE WAY —- YOUR COMPLETE REJECTION OF THE WORD OF GOD IS MAKING A PRETTY GOOD POINT FOR DEPRAVITY, BECAUSE ONLY GOD CAN OPEN YOUR HEART TO RECIEVE THE WORDS THAT YOU ARE UNABLE TO RECIEVE AND YOU ARE AFRAID FOR OTHERS TO READ WHAT I POSTED! IF BURNING LAMP AND YOU ARE SO RIGHT , WHY NOT LET ALL THE BLOGGERS READ BOTH OF OUR POINTS AND SEE FOR THEMSELVES???

[Edited by DTW: Yes, they are reading it]

Deborah (Discerning the World)

Sylesa

In fact I dunno why I should even allow an unbeliever to post an twisted version of scripture on my blog. You agreed with Jeff that your god is different to mine remember. And seeing that I have mentioned this to you a few times in the hopes that I would get a response, at least a sorry or something, it’s dawned on me that you do indeed feel this way.

I think you should go away now. Bye bye. You have been blocked from commenting]

Robbie

I always knew a band aide does not help for cancer…

Burning Lamp

IRRESISTIBLE GRACE

The fourth part of the doctrine of Calvinism, represented by the letter “I” in TULIP, is “Irresistible Grace,” which means that ALL WHO ARE ELECTED to be saved will be saved, that they CANNOT RESIST this special grace LIMITED TO THEM. This dovetails with the doctrine of Unconditional Election. It seems to me that they are “evil twins”. It would necessarily follow, first, that those NOT elected are irresistibly damned. And of course, the logical conclusion is that since Christians cannot affect the salvation or damnation of sinners they will feel no responsibility or burden about it or quite frankly, have any interest in the matter. No doubt Satan delightfully uses this doctrine of “Irresistible Grace” to lull Christians to disobedience and lack of compassion and burden to share the Gospel obey the admonition, the command given to the Church in the Great Commission to reach the lost.

Consider these Scriptures which prove sinners CAN AND DO RESIST God’s grace.

First, in II Peter 3:9 we read, “The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, NOT WILLING THAT ANY SHOULD PERISH, BUT THAT ALL SHOULD COME TO REPENTANCE” God desires ALL men to be saved. Obviously, not all people will welcome His grace, but will choose wrongly.

Next in 1 Timothy 2:1 it says we are to pray for “ALL MEN,” and verses 3 and 4 tell us, “For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour, Who will have ALL MEN to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.” We should pray for ALL MEN because God our Saviour “will have ALL MEN to be saved.” So God would have ALL saved, but some will not be saved. So God’s grace can be resisted.

In Matthew 23:37, we are told that Jesus wept over Jerusalem at the sadness of His heart that His love and grace were refused. “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and YE WOULD NOT! Jesus said, “I would,” and YE WOULD NOT.” So His grace was rejected. Obviously a choice was made and God’s offer of grace was spurned.

In Proverbs 1:24,25, there is a clear statement that God calls and men refuse. That Scripture says, “Because I have called and you refused, I have stretched out my hand and no one regarded,; Because you disdained all my counsel, And would have none of my rebuke,” The context plainly teaches that the refusal is final and those who refused God, “did not choose the fear of the Lord” went to destruction. Surely, then, people DO reject the call of God and RESIST HIS GRACE.

Paul says in Galatians 2:21, “I do not frustrate the grace of God?” That clearly shows that those Galatians teachers who falsely taught salvation by the law did “frustrate the grace of God.”
How many have heard the Gospel several times before they received Christ? Only very few were saved the first time they heard the Gospel at the first conviction of sin they felt! Testimony after testimony tells how God’s gift of salvation was at first rejected, but later accepted.

Think about it – if grace was irresistible, there would be no such thing as the unpardonable sin.

Also, those who were not included in the “elect” would could not be held accountable as according to TULIP, the lost are just that; lost, no matter what they do, there is no point in judging them. If one rejects Christ, one’s end is certain and rightly so, but if one has no chance of partaking of the divine gift of salvation, one cannot be born-again and can’t be held responsible!!

The following passages clearly indicate that God allows men to resist Him and His grace: Prov. 1:22-23; Matt. 23:37; Acts 7:51; Acts 9:5; Israel in the Old Testament; etc.

Burning Lamp

Unconditional Election

The Lord Jesus says in Matthew 11:28, “Come unto Me, ALL ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” He does NOT say “Come unto Me, only those I have chosen…….”If we could not respond to this compassionate invitation, would this not be cruel? Our Lord loves the lost and those who are under the burden of sin – He welcomes ALL who will come to Him humbly to receive Him.

Look at Matthew 23:37, and consider the TULIP version. To say it in that interpretation: “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, BUT YOU ARE UNCONDITIONALLY ELECTED, therefore you will have to go to Hell. There is no hope for you.” What He said is this:”. . . how often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you WOULD NOT! This is clear evidence of a CHOICE.

Consider John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son…” TULIP proponents have unwittingly split the world asunder. They are saying John 3:16 does not mean the whole world but the world of the elect. “For God so loved the world [EVERYBODY], that he gave his only begotten Son, that WHOSOEVER believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

In Mark 10:21 we have the story of the rich young ruler, a lost man who came to Jesus to inquire about eternal life. “ Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, ‘One thing you lack: Go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, take up the cross, and follow Me.’ ” Jesus gave this man a CHOICE. As we know, the rich man made the WRONG choice, not WILLING to put Jesus over his possessions!

What about Jacob and Esau in Romans 9:13? ‘it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.’ God is NOT saying, “I am damning Esau and sending him to Hell – this is not about salvation! That is false exegesis, wrongly dividing of God’s precious Word. For one thing, the word “hate” here is the same word the Lord Jesus used when He said, “If you are going to be My disciples, you will have to HATE your father and mother and your brother and sister and your wife and your children.” WHAT IT MEANS IS “TO PREFER”. Jesus would never tell anyone to despise or hate any person. He even showed love to those who tortured and crucified Him and set a powerful example for us.

God chose Jacob to head a nation for Him, and rejected Esau. That was predestined before they were born (Rom. 9:11-13).

In Genesis 25:23 God says,
“Two nations are in your womb,
Two peoples shall be separated from your body;
One people shall be stronger than the other,
And the older shall serve the younger.” NKJV

This put forth the birthright regarding heading up the nation and was not about Esau’s eternal salvation. It is also important to point out the words within the verse , “AS IT IS WRITTEN, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated” was stated in Malachi 1:1-3 some 1500 years after Esau had chosen to go the wrong way. This Is evidence of God’s FOREKNOWLEDGE as to who was qualified to be the leader.

The burden[a] of the word of the LORD to Israel by Malachi.

2 “ I have loved you,” says the LORD.
“Yet you say, ‘In what way have You loved us?’
Was not Esau Jacob’s brother?”
Says the LORD.
“ Yet Jacob I have loved;
3 But Esau I have hated,
And laid waste his mountains and his heritage
For the jackals of the wilderness.” NKJV

Consider Ephesians 1:4, “According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love.” This is NOT referring to eternal destiny. It is talking about God choosing born-again believers to “be holy and without blame before him in love.”

What about John 15:16? :You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you.” NKJV Again, this is not saying the Lord chooses some for Heaven and some for Hell. This is saying the Lord ordained that born-again believers should bring forth fruit to the glory of God. It has nothing to do with individual salvation.

Consider Romans 8: 28,29 “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.” NKJV This is NOT saying that God unconditionally elected only some to Heaven. This is saying that God’s will that every born-again believer should be made to conform to the image of the Lord Jesus Christ.

God gives the order of things in Romans 8:28,29. First, His foreknowledge (He is SOVEREIGN), then predestination, then calling, then saving. To disregard the inspired, divine order is false doctrine. Again, I Peter 1:2 says that the saints addressed were “Elect according to the FOREKNOWLEDGE of God the Father.” That absolutely exposes “unconditional election.” as false. Election is based on God’s FOREKNOWLEDGE of who will trust Christ. This establishes the SOVEREIGNTY of God but at the same time He in His SOVEREIGNTY CHOOSES to allow man free will to either receive or reject His gift of salvation.

In John 12:32, Jesus said, “And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw ALL peoples to Myself.” NKJV When Jesus draws “ALL PEOPLES” to Himself, He is offering Himself and His salvation to ALL.

It is true the saved are God’s elect, “chosen… in Him before the foundation of the world,” as Ephesians 1:4 tells us. But it is wrong to attribute this election to God’s sovereignty whereby He saves some, forces them to be saved, (as in Irresistible Grace) and damns some whom He has decided He does not wish to save. No, election is not “unconditional.” It is simply that God knows who will trust Him when they hear the Gospel.

Why did God allow Adam and Eve to fall, and so bring a curse on the whole human race? Man (and woman) were created with the will to choose. He did not create programmed robots. He fully knew that man would make wrong choices. That is why God planned with His Son BEFORE THE WORLD BEGAN to offer an atonement for wrong choices His creation would make! So Christ is “the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” Revelation 13:8 This is difficult for us as humans to comprehend, but the Bible tells us it is so. God in His SOVEREIGNTY COULD have made us without the capacity to sin, but He CHOSE not to do that. He wants us to come to Him WILLINGLY and to serve Him out of a heart of love for Him and out of gratitude for what He has done for us. He knew full well that Satan would come to tempt the new couple even in Eden. He created the tree of knowledge and set it in the garden, thereby giving Adam and Eve a CHOICE.

Mark 19:13-15 and Luke 18:15-17 gives the account of Jesus welcoming the little children. He offered His blessing to ALL of them. Can you imagine our Lord saying to ANY of those precious children, “Sorry, you can’t come to Me and I can’t bless you because I did not choose you?” OF COURSE NOT!! To even insinuate such a thing is blasphemous and yet the doctrine of Unconditional Election would say this very thing.

God seeks to draw all men to Himself (John 16:6-11; Prov. 1:22-23). Examples of choosing God can be found in the following Scriptures that I don’t want to take up space quoting. Exodus 32:26; Deut. 30:19; Josh. 24:15:25; 1 Kings 18:21: Proverbs 1:22/23; Luke 14:16-35; John 1:40-45; John 6:66-68; Acts 8; Acts 10; Acts 17:27:34; Eph. 1:13. In the following verses, God says that He wants “ALL” to be redeemed: Ezek. 33:11; 1 Tim. 2:4; 2 Pet. 3:9; Acts 17:30; Matt. 18:14. Therefore, if God FORCES Himself (as in Irresistible Grace) on those He wants saved APART FROM THEIR CHOOSING, all would be saved and this would be universalism and a preposterous conclusion.

Next will be Irresistible Grace. We will skip Limited Atonement for now as Sylesa has said that she does not believe in that. However, in pointing out the specifics of the doctrine of Unconditional Election, as you have pointed out Deborah, if you believe in one you have to believe in the other. The principles of TULIP all hinge upon one another and one cannot truly separate them.

May God be glorified and His Word go forth in Spirit and in Truth. Please understand that I do this as a service to Him and not to in any way promote myself. I pray that I hold no animosity toward those who disagree. By “revisiting” this topic again and again, it reaffirms my belief that TULIP is false doctrine and I hurt for those who are misled by it. That is why I do this, because I believe with my whole heart that what is put forth here is truth. I leave the results in His hands. I am merely a servant and a sinner saved by grace.

==============================================

Perseverance of the Saints

Paul the apostle, in 2 Timothy 1:12 , inspired by the Holy Spirit says”… for I KNOW whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that day”.

The Bible says that we can KNOW we are saved: 1 John 5:13; John 3:16; etc. It says that we do not keep ourselves saved, BUT THE LORD KEEPS US! Heb. 13:5; John 10:27.
These seems an honest question: Are we saved because of the perseverance of the saints, or because of the perseverance of THE SAVIOR?

Look at Jude:1: “Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and PRESERVED in Jesus Christ.” Their perseverance? NO! ” PRESERVED IN JESUS CHRIST.” Notice is says PRESERVED, NOT PERSEVERED

Consider 1 Peter, chapter 1, verses 4 and 5. He says we are saved “to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, Who are kept by the power of … “–the perseverance of the saints? NO! We are “Kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.”

The believer’s salvation is not kept because we were among some hand-picked chosen group, it is because we as born-again believers responded to His call and ACCEPTED His gift of salvation. Those who have received Him as Savior have His promise never to leave or forsake. THAT is the promise the redeemed cling to and that is the Blessed Hope, that the Bridegroom is coming for His own.

NONE of us deserves His gift of eternal life – but He generously and mercifully grants it to every humble heart who comes to Him in their realization that they are a sinner in need of a Savior and know they have nothing to offer Him except a repentant heart. There is nothing we can do to earn His wondrous gift and nothing we can do to preserve it. We are sealed unto redemption by the Holy Spirit. He is the One Who keeps us and we should love Him out of gratitude and love to serve Him with all our hearts.

THAT is the truth and TULIP is a lie.

Deborah (Discerning the World)

Robbie

Shocking isn’t it.

Dominik

[deleted – we don’t tolerate insults]

chrishow

Hi I have looked into Calvinism and think it totally distorts Gods Character.
When I was saved and started to read the Bible, I believed what God says, that All means All, Whosoever means Whosoever, and when I was introduced to Calvinism I rejected it because God tells me to reject false teachings/doctrine.

What is confusing me is that I have been reading a few books, and listening to old tapes of Corrie Ten Boom. God greatly used her to reach many many people with the Gospel and Salvation. She could quite clearly hear God, so why did He not show her that what she had been taught (Dutch Reformed)as a child was wrong? I can’t find any documentation that says she addressed this issue, which I think is very serious error. I have seen a local church split over Calvinism, and a young man who’s Faith was nearly shipwrecked over it.

Can anyone understand why God would use someone and not show them the error of Calvinism?

Deborah (Discerning the World)

Chrishow

I don’t know who Corrie Ten Boom is so I can’t say. But let me tell you this, 50 years ago you could sit in a Word of Faith church and still be saved, today if you are sitting in a Word of Faith church and agreeing with the stuff they preach there is a serious problem because what they preached 50 years ago was different to what they preached today (they preached more ‘truth’) so to say and were less brazen to expose themselves with their heresies – also the internet was not around and people did not have the tools to research religions to see exactly what they entail. The prophet Daniel prophesied that in the last days knowledge would increase. As time has gone by and the end to the last days draws closer so Revelation 18:4 applies more and more; “Then I heard another voice from heaven say: “Come out of her, my people, so that you will not share in her sins, so that you will not receive any of her plagues;” – Right now in this day, the Holy Spirit is calling out people OUT OF false churches, the remnant are finding themselves outside of ROME.

Werner

Chrishow, I also don’t know Corrie Ten Boom, but what I do know is this; if your doctrine on eschatology and ecclesiology are wrong, most of not in all the cases the rest of your doctrine is wrong also.

She apparently did not believe in the Pre-Trib rapture, a common error amongst calvinists. I dont know, but can only guess, that she also believed that the church has replaced Israel, these two usually goes hand in hand for calvinists. http://endtimepilgrim.org/corrie.htm

Like the dutch reformed system today, they are completely ignorant to the truths of the Bible. They don’t even know the difference between right and wrong, i.e. recent litigation of homosexuals and lesbians, how can they know anything then about God’s Word.

You have to remember that Jesus said “You will know them by their fruits” Mt 7:16. The more than two hundred burned at the stake in Calvin’s Geneva, and the legacies of Apartheid and slavery (of which some SA Dutch churches still holds to), can hardly be considered “the fruit of the Spirit” Gal 5:22-23.

The Apostels taught the fruit of the Spirit; the Calvinists taught the TULIP.

The same mindset is found in Jehovah Witnesses, Mormons, Islam, Catholics etc, they worship the system, or the church, priests of their system, not the God of the Bible, the King of old, The Messiah…

So do not be suprised, …in the latter times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons, I Tim4:1.

Deborah (Discerning the World)

Right on Werner…

Paul

What part of John 3:16 do Calvinists don’t understand? Does that single verse rightly divided not dismantle the whole TULIP abomination?
I read the discussion and couldn’t help but cry (and chuckle occasionaly).
I can see that the apostasy in the church is desperately widespread. I wonder what will be the size of the remnant of those living that will be raptured to join those who have fallen asleep in meeting our Lord Jesus Christ in the air.
I really wonder, because Jesus said it shall be as it was in the days of Noah, and remember only 8 made it. With each passing day, I am more and more convinced that I will be raptured alive, if not then my children’s generation will.
Please Lord Jesus Christ save us and come quickly before faith is nowhere to be found on earth!

Deborah (Discerning the World)

Hi Paul

Thanks for your comment, and noting that only 8 people made it onto the Noah’s boat! How small the remnant will be and YES JESUS IS COMING SOON! 🙂

chrishow

Thank you for the responses to my question, they have been very helpful to me 🙂

Paul (Continue in His Word)

I am very troubled by the following statement by the author of this article:

Am I suggesting that Calvinists are not saved? No! Absolutely not. Countless individuals have been saved by the grace of God the moment they put their trust in Jesus Christ and his finished work on the cross before they embraced Calvinism. Nevertheless, the countless individuals who have been saved before they willingly inherited the legacy of John Calvin, does not sanction his core teaching that God predestined some to eternal bliss and others to eternal damnation and neither does it minimize the fact that countless individuals could have been saved had they not been shut out of the Kingdom of Heaven by a doctrine that misrepresents the God of the Bible.

Can someone explain that to me?
How can one reconcile the following verses with that statement: verses like John 16:13, John 8:31-32, John 10:5, John 10:27, John 7:17, Isa 8:20, 2 John 9?
Can the author insert “were led by the Holy Spirit to” in the the bolded statement in the following manner: “…before they [were led by the Holy Spirit to] embrace Calvinism”?

Can we replace “before they embraced Calvinism” with “before they embraced Roman Catholicism”? What is the difference between Calvinism and Roman Catholicism? are they not both satanic doctrines/cults?
Can we replace “Calvinism” in the statement “before they embraced Calvinism” by any other false “Christian” cult out there?

This leaves me very puzzled indeed, and raises so many questions in my poor mind.

Paul

As I said on another topic, if someone was genuinely saved, and they got trapped in the doctrine of Calvinism for a while then yes (that is a different story) but to say one is supposedly genuinely saved and then becomes a PERMANENT Calvinist is saved?? That is not right. I don’t think the person was saved to start off with if they remain in the doctrine of Calvinism and won’t budge right to the very end – where is the Holy Spirit in their life leading them into ALL TRUTH?

So based on quotes you mentioned on another article Paul, the same thing applies….

Could someone who believes this false gospel of Calvinism be truly saved? Fortunately, many Calvinists (you among them) were saved before becoming Calvinists. They now malign God by saying that He is pleased to damn multitudes though He could save all—and that He predestines multitudes to the Lake of Fire before they are even born. But having believed the gospel before becoming Calvinists, they “shall not come into condemnation, but [have] passed from death unto life” (Jn:5:24). Those who only know the false gospel of Calvinism are not saved, while those who are saved and ought to know better but teach these heresies will be judged for doing so.
(http://www.thebereancall.org/content/september-2005-q-and-a-2. please read all Dave’s answer to get the context)

and

The original question was, “Is it possible for someone who believes only in the soteriology of Calvin to be saved?” As I said in my response, there are many Calvinists who were saved before they became Calvinists or who have believed the true gospel in spite of their Calvinism—but “those who know only the false gospel of Calvinism are not saved.”
(http://www.thebereancall.org/content/december-2005-q-and-a-1. please read all Dave’s answer to get the context)

Is this not what David Hunt is saying, that people who are genuinely saved and get trapped in Calvinism, will sooner or later leave it because they are saved?

Hmmmmmm….I went to read here http://www.thebereancall.org/content/december-2005-q-and-a-1 and at the bottom it states,

“That a person may believe the true gospel and thus be truly saved in spite of believing the false gospel of Calvinism may be possible. But I don’t see how one could sort out the fact that contradictory beliefs were being held. What does one really believe?”

Basically Dave is not willing to damn every Calvinist to hell in case they were saved BEFORE they got trapped in in Calvinism (which means the Holy Spirit WILL lead them out of it), however those who get ‘Elected’ in Calvinism are caught up in a cult unlike any other believing TULIP from the word go have little chance of ever getting saved. There are some who make it out, but not many.

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