Posts Tagged ‘TULIP’
Some Things Non-Calvinists Should Know About Calvinism
An attempt to clear up some of the misunderstandings about Calvinism. This is not meant to be a detailed doctrinal defense of Calvinism’s Doctrines Of Grace.
1) Calvinism and Hyper-Calvinism are poles apart. The terms are not to be used synonymously. A Hyper-Calvinist is not just a zealous Calvinist. We both consider each other to be “mongrel” Calvinists. No man will actually call himself a Hyper-Calvinist.
2) Yes Calvinists are split into several factions. But then so are many such doctrinal schools e.g. Dispensationalism, Church Government, Worship – do we sing only the Psalms or use hymns? Which hymns? Do we use music? Which music? Which set of texts do we base our Bible translation on? Is it the Textus Receptus that is important or the (KJV) AV? or both? etc.
3) The term free will needs to be defined to avoid confusion. Calvinists will either affirm it or deny it, depending on what they think you mean. This sometimes leads to charges of contradictions. Consult the standard Calvinist Confessions e.g. the Westminster Confession of Faith Chapter 9 for a defining of terms.
4) The term free agency is not automatically the same as free will when used by a Calvinist. It is the Calvinist’s preferred term to free will. Preferred so as to avoid the confusion spoken of in the above point.
5) Calvinists do believe in man’s responsibility, but deny his ability to repent and believe the gospel. The two terms are not synonymous. Calvinists believe that man’s inability to repent and believe are caused by his own sin … not any positive imposition on God’s part.
6) Calvinists do not believe that men are puppets or blocks of wood or robots, but responsible beings and are treated as such by God, even when fallen. [more about "puppets"]
7) Calvinists are not fatalists. Calvinists believe that God has ordained the end and also the means to that end. Therefore they do believe in evangelism as the means God uses to fulfill His intention of saving the elect. It is not true to getridofstretch.net say that Calvinists believe that God saves men without the gospel. Calvinists do believe in prayer.
Calvinists do believe that it is the duty of men to repent and believe the gospel. This is one of our quarrels with the Hyper-Calvinists.
9) Calvinists do believe that the gospel is (to quote Calvin) to be preached indiscriminately to the elect and to the reprobate (Commentary on Isaiah 54:13). This is another one of our quarrels with the Hyper-Calvinists.
10) Calvinists do not limit the value or merit or worth of the blood of Christ. They do limit the intention of the blood to save any other than the elect. We are happy enough (as was John Calvin) with the statement that the blood of Christ is sufficient for the whole world but efficient only for the elect.
11) Calvinists do not believe that men are damned without any reference to their sin. God passing by and leaving certain men in their sin is not the same as God damning men by the sheer force of His decree.
12) Calvinists do not just preach on the Five Points and nothing else. At least no more so than Dispensationalists who just preach on prophecy or Pentecostals who just preach on the gifts of the Spirit etc.
13) Calvinists do not read the Five Points into every text of scripture. Many of the major Bible commentaries, beloved and valued by all Christians e.g. Matthew Henry were written by Calvinists.
14) Calvinists do believe that men can resist the Holy Spirit. They believe that even the elect can resist the Holy Spirit, and do – but only up to the time when the Spirit regenerates their heart so that resist Him no more. The non-elect effectively resist Him all their lives.
15) Calvinists do not believe that men are brought kicking and screaming irresistibly to Christ. We believe in irresistible grace. The will is not passed by in salvation. No man ever came to Christ unwillingly, or regretted that he had been brought.
16) Calvinist’s do not believe that there androidappstores.org are souls out there who want to be saved, but can’t be saved because they are not of the elect.
17) Calvinists, being without access to the Lamb’s Book of Life, see every man as potentially elect and preach the gospel to him.
18) Calvinists do believe in unconditional election but they do not believe in unconditional salvation. Except a man be born again, he will not enter the kingdom of Heaven (John 3:3) Except he repent, he will perish (Luke 13:3) Except he be converted etc., all these are conditions of salvation.
19) Calvinists do believe that regeneration precedes faith in Christ. We do not confuse the term regeneration with that of justification or salvation. The Spirit of God regenerates the elect sinner enabling him to forsake the deadness of his sin and willingly embrace Christ and so be justified by faith and saved for eternity. Regeneration therefore is not synonymous with justification or salvation any more than conviction of sin is synonymous with conversion to Christ.
20) Perseverance of the saints does not mean that Calvinists believe that they must hang on for dear life without any reference to the keeping power of God. It simply means that we believe that the Christian will prove to be an overcomer in accordance with 1 John 5:4-5 etc.
21) Some Calvinists use the phrase Particular Redemption as opposed to Limited Atonement because they can see how the General Redemptionist position may also be said to limit the atonement, although in a different way (i.e. it does not set out to do all what was intended).
22) Calvinists do not believe that John Calvin is infallible, no more than Methodists believe that John Wesley is infallible or Dispensationalists allowing Schofield or John Darby the final word.
23) While Calvinists believe that saving grace and repentance are the gifts of God, given only to His elect, they do not believe that God exercises faith for them or repents for them. The elect sinner, enabled by the power of God, actually repents and believes for peppermintbenefits.org himself.
24) While there can be no real middle ground between the Calvinist position and that of the non Calvinist, yet most Calvinists believe that both sides really do preach the gospel. Despite our differences as to many of the details, a man who preaches that Christ died for the ungodly and that the work was sufficient to save the whosoever who will repent and believe is really preaching the gospel. We rejoice in the gospel preaching of John Wesley just as much as that of George Whitefield, although (naturally) we would hold Whitefield to be the better theologian.
25) There is a difference between a paradox and a contradiction. We know that God is sovereign, yet man is free to follow the dictates of his own will. Where the two lines meet is not for us to say. Calvinist ignorance on the matter is to be excused on the basis of Deuteronomy 29:29
26) Although Calvinists believe that even sinful acts are ordained by God (Ephesians 1:11 / Proverbs 16:4) yet such makes the event certain, but not necessary. This clears God from being the author of sin. This view best explains the Cross (Acts 2:23, 4:27-28 / Luke 22:22). This is explained further elsewhere on this site.
So there you have it. I don’t expect this list to really convince any body of the correctness of the Calvinist position. It is not meant to be a doctrinal defense of Calvinism. I give few references because I want to keep it short and easy accessible. The standard Calvinistic Confessions e.g. the Westminster Confession of Faith etc., should be consulted for definitive statements. The Dictionary of Theological Terms (Rev. Alan Cairns – Ambassador-Emerald) is an invaluable tool. Hopefully it will clear up more than a few misunderstandings. It is wearisome in the extreme to see a caricature of your faith pilloried. Perhaps someone on the other side of the fence (non-Calvinist) might engage in a similar exercise and so clear up any misunderstandings Calvinists might have.
Ed Young – Anti-Calvinist Rant
Ed Young rants against Calvinism & comes across angry, arrogant, immature, & misinformed.
Surprised? Me neither.
For more from Ed Young & his alternative to skinny jeans, don’t miss his flamboyantly masculine-friendly site: Pastor Fasion
Providence (Where Was God?) – Poem
Providence (Where Was God?)
Where was God, when Jesus died on the cross?
When all hope seemed lost?
Where was God, when the waves did toss?
When my dreams did pause?
Where was God, when I needed Him most?
When the fire began to roast?
Where was God, when mine enemies did boast?
When I thought I was toast?
Where was God, when Satan seemed boss?
When all hope seemed lost?
Where was God, when Jesus died on the cross?
God was there… He was paying my cost.
John Piper’s Unexpected Career in Hip-Hop
Holy hip-hop or Christian rap has been on my mind lately. While I still feel like a complete poser when a listen to such music, I can’t deny that I quite enjoy it (as my wife would be glad to testify with a roll of her pretty eyes; she isn’t much of a fan). As I’ve been exploring this genre, which is still rather new to me, I have come across an interesting and unexpected influence on these artists: none other than John Piper. Sometimes he is the one who has inspired the song and, even more often, he actually appears within the song. Let me give you some examples.
Let’s get started with what is probably the most notable and most popular of these Piper references.
Don’t Waste Your Life by Lecrae may not actually feature Piper’s voice, but it is named after one of his most popular books.
Next up is Make War by Tedashii which begins with John Piper’s battlecry of “Make War!”
From Tedashii we go to Shai Linne who begins his song All-Consuming Fire with a great quote from Piper.
We’re just getting started. Here is Json with Who He Is, a song that features Lecrae. And John Piper.
Timothy Brindle is also in on this John Piper thing, using a Piper sermon to introduce his song Sanctification.
And here comes Swoope with Actions Speak Louder. You’ll need to wait to the end to hear Piper’s bit.
We’ll go back to Tedashii and his song This Song’s For You, which is meant to honor true preachers. “So this song’s for the true shepherds / who prove selfless / whose aim is to aid the true helpless / I mean brothers like Spurgeon and Piper, Tom Nelson, John Edwards, / brothers who make disciples / Those who because of Ezekiel 34 shepherd the flocks / as a true pastor of the Lord.”
And back to Shai Linne with My Portion who gets Piper involves right off the top.
Once I began looking, I found quite a few more Piper quotes and references from artists who are not quite as well-known, but I guess I’ve made the point. Even here I am sure I haven’t exhausted all of the references from the more popular artists. Feel free to leave a comment and tell me what I’ve missed!
Here are some bonus videos:
It is not just rappers who use Piper’s sermons. Matt Papa includes John Piper in his song The Glory of God.
The Joy Eternal has a whole album based on the work of Piper. The title of the album is A Sweet & Bitter Providence. Here is their song The Best Is Yet to Come.
And to wrap it up, here is John Piper interviewing Lecrae:
- from Challies’ blog
Praising God for Your Election
Praising God for Your Election
“Having been predestined according to [God’s] purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will” (Eph. 1:11).
God took the initiative in salvation by choosing you and granting you saving faith.
In Ephesians 1:4 Paul says that God “chose us in [Christ] before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him.” In verse 11 he reiterates that marvelous truth by affirming that believers have been predestined to salvation according to God’s own purpose and will.
Many reject the teaching that God chose (“predestined”) believers to salvation. They think believers chose God. In one sense they’re right. Salvation involves an act of the will in turning from sin to embrace Christ. But the issue in predestination goes deeper than that. It’s a question of initiative. Did God choose you on the basis of your faith in Him, or did He, by choosing you, enable you to respond in faith?
The answer is clear in Scripture. Romans 3:11 says that no one seeks for God on his own. Unregenerate people have no capacity to understand spiritual truth; it’s all foolishness to them (1 Cor. 2:14). They are spiritually dead (Eph. 2:1), blind (2 Cor. 4:4), and ignorant (Eph. 4:18).
How can people in that condition initiate saving faith? They can’t! That’s why Jesus said, “No one can come to Me, unless the Father who sent Me draws him. … All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me; and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out” (John 6:44, 37). Paul added, “God … has saved us, and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was granted us in Christ Jesus from all eternity” (2 Tim. 1:8–9).
God took the initiative. He chose you and gave you saving faith (Eph. 2:8–9). Rejoice in that truth. Rest in His power to conform all things to His will. Draw strength and assurance from His promise never to let you go (John 10:27–29). Then live each day as God’s elected one by shunning sin and following after holiness.
Suggestions for Prayer: Praise God for placing His love upon you and for granting you salvation.
✧ Pray for the salvation of others, and seek opportunities to share Christ with them today.
For Further Study: Read Ezekiel 36:22–32.
✧ Why will God one day redeem Israel? ✧ What does that passage teach you about God’s initiative in salvation?
- from Drawing Near – Daily Readings for a Deeper Faith by John MacArthur (Logos Bible Software)