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Calvanism (brief)

Discussion in 'Bible Answers' started by Chad, Jul 21, 2006.

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  1. #41 hiselect, Aug 20, 2008
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2008
    I'm not sure why you wouldn't hold to scripture as being the only spiritual authority for believers, (maybe you're a roman catholic?) so I'll let someone else tackle that one with you.

    I will, however, lay some groundwork for particular redemption.

    First lets get some misconceptions out of the way.

    Both Calvinists and non-calvinists (read: Arminians) believe the following statement:

    "The death of Christ was sufficient for all, but efficient for some."

    The death of Christ was sufficient for every man, woman, and child that ever lived in the history of mankind, no one argues that. However, his death is only efficient for those that believe, right?

    Only those who repent and believe the gospel receive any benefit of the atonement, is this not true? (the benefit being declared just in God's sight, God's wrath and justice is appeased and satisfied in Christ's punishment and not the man's)

    The Calvinist merely sees that this was God's intention all along: to save some. To save the believers alone, not the unbelievers.

    John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He sent his son so that the believers would never perish, but have eternal life.

    This already rules out universalism, so the atoning work of Christ is already limited this much.

    However, the Arminian claims that God's intention all along was to save every single person, or merely make salvation possible for all. However, in this view, God fails over and over and over again to bring a great majority of people to faith and repentance, making The Father's election, the Son's atonement, and the Spirit's work in regeneration (born again) all frustrated and overthrown.

    The Calvinist believes that God failed at nothing - He saved every single person He intended to save. Not a single one is lost, all of them will repent, and be glorified.

    Lets tackle these claims step by step.

    Many people can quote Romans 8:28, but most do not understand how the following set of verses relate to it.

    Verse 28 says that all things work together for good for God's people, and God's people are described as "those that love God" and "who are the called according to His purpose"

    Verse 29 and 30 explain 5 steps that God does, that God's people experience:

    1) Foreknown
    2) Predestined
    3) Called
    4) Justified
    5) Glorified

    First, notice that all 5 are linked together like a chain:

    Every single person foreknown is also predestined
    Every single person predestined is also called
    Every single person called is also justified
    Every single person justified is also glorified

    In short, every single person foreknown is glorified. This is why Paul is so confident that all things eventually end up good for God's people, because this chain of events is so certain and absolute that there is no possibility of frustration or failure, which results in a promise from God that cannot be broken.

    If some of the predestined were not called, for example, and somehow a portion of those people slipped through the cracks, then they would not end up glorified. Thankfully this is not the case -therefore Paul can make such a promise with no fear of the promise being broken.

    Secondly, notice the order of events.

    1) foreknown 2) predestined 3) called

    It is important to note that being foreknown and predestined precede being called, not vice versa.

    This rules out the idea of conditional election in that God foresaw that some would respond to the calling, so then He reacts by foreknowing and predestining them.

    This is why election is called "unconditional" election, because there was nothing good in the sinners that God saw to make them worthy of being elected (all were dead in sins, enemies of God, enmity against Him) - rather, He elected them out of pure, free love and grace. (by grace are you saved)

    If conditional election were true, the verse would read the opposite:

    "Whom he called, and then saw they would respond, he foreknew, and whom he foreknew, he predestined"

    Thirdly, look at the word "foreknow". The passage does not say anything about certain actions being foreseen, but rather, certain people being foreknown.

    "Whom He did foreknow"

    Split the word into two parts:

    Fore - before hand, before the world began, before creation
    Know - to know someone in a personal relationship sense

    Foreknow - to enter into a relationship before time began

    Fourthly - Verse 32 is a powerful argument that gives assurance beyond description. The argument is simple. He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? In other words, if God literally "delivered" up his Son unto the death of the cross, and he did, will he not do everything necessary to protect the investment for which he paid such a high price? If God has already given us the best gift of all, his blessed Son, will he keep back the second and third things? Do you see the logic of Paul's great assurance.

    "will he not do everything necessary to protect the investment for which he paid such a high price?" - Does this not prove the doctrine of limited atonement/particular redemption

    If Christ was delivered up for every single individual, then God would likewise provide all other things for all men for free as well, but He does not - he only provides faith and repentance to some (the elect, the believers, the church, the bride)

    Rather, Christ was delivered up for the people in Romans 8:28 - those who love God, who are the called according to His purpose!

    John 6, 10, and 17 deal with the atoning work of Christ as well, many times in His own words.

    John 6:37-40
    In verse 37 Christ declares that every single person who the Father gave to the Son will come to Him. There is no ifs, ands, or buts here. Salvation is a sovereign work of God. It is not said that only some of those given to the Son will come, but all of them. 100%.

    In the next verse Christ explains the reason He came from heaven - to do the Father's will.

    In verse 39, He defines that will - That of all that the Father gives the Son, the Son will lose none of them, but raise them up again at the resurrection.

    Yet again Christ declares that every single person for whom the Father gave him, for whom He will atone for on the cross, will absolutely be saved and glorified at the end. There is no chance of some of them a) not coming to Christ and b) being lost and not raised up at the last day

    Finally in verse 40, He offers another attribute or description for the people discussed in the previous 3 verses: They will look on the Son and believe in Him and receive eternal life.

    In John 10:11, 14-16
    In both verses 11 and 15 Christ declares that He will lay down his life for the sheep.

    In verse 16, Christ explains that there are some sheep that are not yet saved - they are not yet in His flock - but He will find them, and they will hear his voice, and be saved, and follow him.

    In John
    In John 24-25 the Pharisees still did not believe even after being eyewitnesses to Christ's miracles, and in verse 26, Christ explains why:

    "[FONT=Arial, Geneva, Helvetica]But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. "

    The reason for their unbelief is because they were not His sheep. Notice it is not said that they are not sheep because they do not believe, but rather, Christ said the opposite. They do not believe BECAUSE they are not His sheep.

    If they are not sheep, then everything said of the sheep in verses 11-16, and 28-29 does not apply to them!

    1) Christ was not laying down his life for them (v11, v15)
    2) They will not inherit eternal life (v 28)
    3) Christ will not go after them to seek and find them and bring them to the flock (v16)
    4) They were not given from the Father to the Son (v 29)
    Finally, in John 17, Christ is praying a priestly prayer as mediator for God's people whom He is about to atone for, bearing all of their iniquities in full (It is finished, paid in full!)

    In verses 2-3 it is said that Christ will secure eternal life for "as many as the Father had given him"

    And last but not least, for Christ to atone for every individual on earth would make God unjust. Observe:

    If Christ atones for every single human being, then every single human being would be declared just before God, and be saved. Yet we know many will perish into hell.

    This provides a problem of double jeopardy. Double jeopardy is when a person is tried twice for the same offense, which is unjust.

    I'll let Charles Spurgeon say it in much better words than I could:

    Thanks for reading this rather long winded post. I look forward to hearing back from you. If you are interested in the topic, the book "The Death of Death" by John Owen is the definitive work on Christ's perfect and substitutionary atonement.
    [FONT=Arial, Geneva, Helvetica]
  2. So then what do you think HolySpirit is here for? What authority do you suppose the first century church submitted to? Did Abraham have any scripture?

    I believe that I already clarified that I do not follow any religious sect or group, so no I am not catholic either.

    As far as the rest of your post, I would love to answer you but universal reconciliation discussion is forbidden here, but I would be happy to discuss it with you else where, just PM me.
  3. #43 Meagen, Aug 20, 2008
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2008
    During that time not much more..but I said I came to know christ then. I've always had interest in the Bible and God (which kinda proves the elect thing for me .. maybe not for others but for me it does) and I've spent a lot of time with a lot of preachers and it's funny how everyone views are different except for the people I've talked to about said "calvanism" .. they all have the same views and use the same scripture and text. I havent really delved into a lot of other things .. but I do know that I was taught how to use my Bible and how to read in context and with the past 2.5 months I have done nothing but delve into a study on this belief system, and I have found that it is purley Biblical and no one has been able to truely disprove it. People have tried .. but I've researched what they have said and found the Scripture to say otherwise. As long as you read the Bible in context the name of the belief system you are involved with doesnt matter. It's not about denomination or belief systems .. it's all about God and his word.. as far as I'm concerned all of this denomination stuff is a bunch of confusion that never should have started...we should all simply rely on God and His Word. Christ should be our main and only focus.

    I know I am young and a very VERY new Christian, BUT I know my God is good. And when God TRUELY calls us..there is no denying Him, and with that comes a total change of life style and heart. And mine truely is. I love God with such a passion that only a saved person could know and I know what I believe is Biblical and Scripturally true. I dont care what people say about it, or the name "calvanist" because that is not what I believe in, God and His word is what I believe in.
  4. this may be nitpicking, but the proper spelling is "Calvinism", not "calvanism"

    The theologian that it's named after is John Calvin, not John Calvan :) lol

    c-a-l-v-i-n-i-s-m, only one a!
  5. please go ahead..nit pick all you want..because I think you just proved my point.

    The name of the person I follow is Jesus Christ. It just so happens to fit directly with the name of another man who became "famous" for believing the same thing. And I'm 100% sure he would much rather me be able to spell Christ's name than his own.


  6. Amen! I agree! It is actually unfortunate that these labels exist at all! The reason the label "calvinism" exists is because of the errors of Arminianism/libertarian free will/semi-pelagianism/synerigism!

    If the humanistic Arminians 400 years ago had never begun preaching this false gospel, there would be no need for the distinction of "calvinism" vs "arminianism"

    We'd all just be "Christians"

    However, this is not the case, therefore I think it is important to explain which camp we are coming from, in the same way that Trinitarians must label themselves as such to separate themselves from the errors of "oneness" (anti-trinity)

    This is why I have no problems calling myself a "Calvinist", even if it does attract alot of controversy and misconceptions and strawmen, in the same way I happily admit to be a trinitarian.
    Again, the labels exist as a result of false teachings, so it is helpful, theologically, to be able to understand and use the different terms and jargons.
  7. Well, I wont deny what I believe but I will not say I believe it because one man or many men believe it..I will tell anyone who askes I am a christian and I rely on what God and His Word says! =]
  8. True, it is important to say we believe what the Word says, but some people think the Word teaches Arminianism! Therefore, sometimes it is necessary to use the aforementioned labels. Sad but true :(
  9. I say the Word teaches neither calvinism or arminianism because the Word is Jesus.
  10. I have never denied believing in the Calvinsitic view, but when it comes down to it..the name just isnt the point. We can use the name as a base..I do that..but when it comes to telling someone about Jesus I'm going to stick with reading from the Bible.
  11. Good because that's what every Calvinist does :p

    Arminians do the same, but they only tell you half the story.

    For example, the following 6 things are true:

    1) Man must freely and willingly repent and believe the gospel
    2) Everyone that repents and believes will be saved
    3) Repentance and faith is what man freely does by himself - God does not repent and believe for people

    However, there's a difference between what man MUST do and what man is ABLE to do.

    4) Man, because of his sin nature, is totally unable to repent and believe the gospel
    5) The new birth, regeneration, is what God does to a man, by Himself, without any cooperation from the man, which enables the man to freely and willingly repent and believe (Prior to regeneration, man is not willing to do this, because he is a hater of God)
    6) The scriptures clearly show that repentance and faith are the evidences and not the cause of regeneration.

    Arminians preach a half-gospel. They preach points 1, 2, and 3, but never mention points 4, 5, and 6.

    To believe and preach points one, two, and three, without also preaching number four five and six is to grossly misrepresent the gospel of God's grace. It is to give a totally false picture of the sinner and his true need. It shows only half of the man's sin. It misses the most crucial point of a lost man's need, namely, his lack of power or ability to overcome his sinful nature and its effects. The gospel which is concocted out of this view is only a half gospel. It is at this point that modern evangelism so miserably fails. It confuses man's responsibility with his ability, and falsely assumes that a sinner has the moral ability to perform all that God has commanded. The texts of scripture that speak of mans utter inability are either totally ignored or badly twisted by this perversion of the true gospel of God's saving grace.

    Man cannot see - until he first be born again. John 3:3.

    Man cannot understand - until he first be given a new nature. I Cor. 2:14.

    Man cannot come - until he first be effectually called by the Holy Spirit. John 6:44,45.

    Man cannot do anything pleasing to God - until he is born again (in the spirit) Romans 8:8

    Man cannot obey God's commands - until he has the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:7)

    Mans heart is stony - until He is washed and given a new heart and new spirit (Ezek 36:25-27)

    How dreadful, and ridiculous, to give Christ the glory for His work on the cross, and then give sinners the credit for the Father's work in eternity (election) and the Spirit's work in our hearts (regeneration).

    It does great dishonor to the Sovereign Spirit to say, "The Holy Spirit will perform His miraculous work of quickening you unto life as soon as you give Him your permission." That's like standing in a graveyard saying to the dead people, "I will give you life and raise you up from the grave if you will only take the first step of faith and ask me to do it." What a denial of the sinner's total spiritual inability. Amazing!

    The root error of the Arminian's gospel of freewill is its failure to see that man's part, repentance and faith, are the fruits and effects of God's work and not the essential ingredient's supplied by the sinner as man's part of the deal. Every man who turns to Christ does so willingly, but that willingness is a direct result of the Father's election and the Holy Spirit's effectual calling. To say, "If you will believe, God will answer your faith with the New Birth," is to misunderstand man's true need and misrepresent God's essential work.
  12. #52 jiggyfly, Aug 22, 2008
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2008
    Seems things have turned religious
  13. Doctrine and theology is related to religion in your mind?
  14. In most cases, yes, especially from protestant view whether it be calvinism or arminianism.
  15. #55 hiselect, Aug 23, 2008
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2008
    It is shocking that you would scoff at the study of God and His doctrines.

    Doctrine and theology are indescribably important for the following reasons:

    There are many today who regard truth and error as matters of small consequence; if a man lives rightly, they say, it matters not much what his beliefs and opinions are. Such statements do not surprise us. Night and day are all one to a blind man. Truth and error are all one to an ignorant man.

    I'm always amazed by the people who, despite God's clear and emphatic commands through the Apostle Paul, say things like, "Ah, we need to forget about the differences in our doctrines, and we just need to love one another." as though those two are consistent goals. Surely they haven't come to realize that the only way we can love right is to live right, and the only way we can live right is to believe right.

    If you don't know doctrine and theology, how will you recognize false doctrine and bad theology with you encounter it? (You wont)
  16. #56 jiggyfly, Aug 23, 2008
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2008
    I thought I was clear on my position, I do not disregard Truth nor do I despise correct doctrine. But I definitely despise false doctrine and religious paradigm. I have found that the protestant teachings, both calvinism and arminianism to be lacking substantially according to the early believers, the scriptures and most importantly HolySpirit.

    As far as loving right, living right and believing right, well it is impossible for man to accomplish any of these things by mere doctrine and or theology and the scriptures are very clear that it is only possible by HolySpirit. The 21st century church doesn't even compare with the 1st century church, so whats lacking? Is it doctrine or theology? Is it scholarly teaching, hermeneutics, or homiletics? Do we even see these things that religion has made so important, at work in the 1st century church?

    How about simple obedience to HolySpirit's government?
  17. #57 hiselect, Aug 25, 2008
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2008
    I'm not sure what to make of your response other than that you disagree with the idea of God's role and man's responsibility spelled out in my post.

    No need to beat around the bush, just come out and say that you disbelieve in the doctrine of Total Depravity, Unconditional Election, and Particular Redemption ;)

    (Translation: You disbelieve that man is spiritually dead and needs regeneration, you disbelieve that God graciously elected undeserving haters of God that never sought him to begin him, and you disbelieve that Christ literally atoned for those He died for?)

    ^ is that what your saying when you label these things as "religious" in a negative sense?

    I think what you are worried about is being labeled or grouped with a "system", which is understandable. However, it is in no way unbiblical to understand theology and Biblical teaching by way of doctrines, names, labels, and "systems"

    It is merely a way for us to understand a collection(s) of beliefs (whether right or wrong).

    Example - trinitarianism. This is a "system". It is not unbiblical or even unChristian to believe in the doctrine of the Trinity by means of the label or system.
  18. #58 jiggyfly, Aug 25, 2008
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2008
    I have said it and repeated it, I believe that calavinism and arminianism doctirnes are lacking and in error. If you would like to discuss it in more detail then just pm me and we can go from there.
  19. #59 Bambi, Aug 28, 2008
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2008
    Election verses

    I like to refer to Calvanism as Election. Here is a list of some verses that I know of that might help in anwsering any questions.
    John 6:37-40, 44, 65; 9: 35; 10:16; 15:16,19; 17:9
    Romans 3:10-12, 23; chapters 8-10
    Ephesians Chapter 1
    Isaiah 43:7
    Hebrews 11:7
    Luke chapter 15
    Proverbs 20:24
    Mark 13:20
    Revelation 1:5
    1 Corinthian chapter 2
    2 Corinthian 4:3-5
    1 John 4:13
    I've come to realize through this study is that God will reveal in His good time the understanding of His Word. I was a Christian for almost twenty years before I realized that the Doctrine of Election is true. God bless.
  20. It might be a little late to point out, Meagan, that you obviously do not read Greek and are relying on another's interpretation.

    Kosmos= Creation.
    In no way does it refer to a select few.

    Isn't it funny that those speaking of "election" speak as if they are of the elect?

    If it is something pre-ordained by God (and scripture certainly seems to indicate this) and if only a select few are "elect", how do you know it's you? How do you know you won't be saying "Lord, Lord, Lord" only to have Yeshua respond "I never knew you."

    Bless up!

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