Let's be reasonable with one another, shall we?

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

And He said Unto THEM...

Unashamed of Grace

I posted on the UoG group blog (of which I am a member). The verses that Wingfooted brought up about Judas got me to thinking.

21 Comments:

  • Blessings, Rose.

    Excellent and Amen.

    Jesus’ own words, spoken to and directed to the 12...

    “Take this, and divide it among yourselves.”

    “This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.”

    “This is my body which is given for you.”

    And who was the “you” in these verses? The 12 Apostles, of which Judas was one. And notice that Judas was not only given a cup, but that cup had the same amount of the “fruit of the vine” that the other 11 had. Just think what a powerful testimony to Calvinism’s limited atonement, that he died only for the elect, if Jesus had said...

    “take this cup and divide it among yourselves, but don’t give one drop to that reprobate Judas”.

    Or if he had said........

    “This is my body, which is given for you, well...all of you except for Judas.”

    This is clearly how some Calvinists (those of the 5 point variety) are forced to interpret these verses. If there was ever an opportunity for Jesus to single out the Lost in regards to his atoning sacrifice, this would have been it. But he didn’t. Instead, he looked at the 12, of which Judas was one, and said “This is my body, which is given for you....This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.”

    The real issue is that non-Calvinists see the clear distinction between died for/shed for and the blood applied. The blood shed does not save, only the blood applied by personal faith. Romans 3:25......

    “God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood.”

    This is scriptural support for why we can approach anyone, ANYONE, and say "Jesus shed his blood for you."

    We also notice that Jesus even washed the feet of Judas to show “the full extent of his love”. Our Saviour loved Judas, just like the other Apostles, to the end. Now we are to believe that the “full extent of his love” somehow fell short of “electing love”? If so, then the Lord’s “full extent” wasn’t so full after all.

    He who has ears, let him hear.

    wingedfooted1

    By Anonymous wingedfooted1, at 6/02/2009 8:34 PM  

  • Amen! Thank You Jesus! Without Him I would be so hopelessly lost.

    By Blogger David Wyatt, at 6/02/2009 10:05 PM  

  • Oh, & excuse my lack of manners, Rose, I got so excited I forgot to say howdy to you!

    By Blogger David Wyatt, at 6/02/2009 10:06 PM  

  • Blessings, Rose.

    Don’t let the doctrine of reprobation frighten you. Unless of course, you are one of the reprobate. Or have friends, neighbors, or family who are. Regardless, they can’t be saved anyway. Remember, if God wanted them to be in heaven, then they would be. It’s as simple as that.

    I’ve read that “when a sinner is so hardened as to feel no remorse or misgiving of conscience, it is considered as a sign of reprobation.”

    Interesting.

    wingedfooted1

    By Anonymous wingedfooted1, at 6/04/2009 6:55 PM  

  • Unless of course, you are one of the reprobate. Or have friends, neighbors, or family who are.

    WF1: Have you any infallible means at your disposal to definitely discern who the reprobates are? If so, then you have the advantage on us all. (Except, of course, over God, but you can, at least on this matter, claim some kind of equality with Him.)

    If you are quoting me from my response to Rose elswhere about not be frightened by the doctrine of reprobation, then it may be necessary for me to point out for your benefit (I think Rose got the drift of what I was writing) that in practical terms, reprobates are those who willingly reject salvation because they love darkness rather than light. A reprobate is someone who simply gets what he both deserves and wants.

    Unless someone wants to unnecessarily wants to mystify the subject...

    Regards,

    By Blogger Colin Maxwell, at 6/05/2009 12:01 PM  

  • Oh...Hi Rose!

    By Blogger Colin Maxwell, at 6/05/2009 12:01 PM  

  • Blessings, Colin.

    I have already quoted Calvin in regards to the Lost, however, you say you provide quotes that “qualify” those statements. So let’s see what other Calvinists have to say.

    Calvinist Loraine Boettner writes concerning reprobation......

    Calvin did not hesitate to base THE REPROBATION OF THE LOST, as well as the election of the saved, ON THE ETERNAL PURPOSE OF GOD. We have already quoted him to the effect that “not all men are created with a similar destiny but eternal life is foreordained for some, and eternal damnation for others. Every man, therefore, being CREATED for one or the other of these ends, we say, he is PREDESTINATED either to life or to death.” And again he says, “There can be no election without its opposite, reprobation.” That the latter raises problems which are not easy to solve, he readily admits, but advocates it as the only intelligent and Scriptural explanation of the facts.

    Luther, also as certainly as Calvin, ATTRIBUTES THE ETERNAL PERDITION OF THE WICKED, as well as the eternal salvation of the righteous, TO THE PLAN OF GOD.

    “This mightily offends our rational nature,” he says, “that God should, of His own mere unbiased will, leave some men to themselves, harden them and condemn them; but He gives abundant demonstration, and does continually, that this is really the case; namely, that THE SOLE CAUSE why some are saved, AND OTHERS PERISH, PROCEEDS FROM HIS WILLING the salvation of the former, AND THE PERDITION OF THE LATTER, according to that of St. Paul, ‘He hath mercy on whom He will have mercy, and whom He will He hardeneth.’”

    And again,

    It may seem absurd to human wisdom THAT GOD SHOULD HARDEN, BLIND, AND DELIVER UP SOME MEN TO A REPROBATE SENSE; THAT HE SHOULD FIRST DELIVER THEM OVER TO EVIL, AND CONDEMN THEM FOR THAT EVIL; but the believing, spiritual man sees no absurdity at all in this; knowing that God would be never a whit less good, even though He should destroy all men.” Luther says that “ALL THINGS WHATEVER ARISE FROM AND DEPEND UPON THE DIVINE APPOINTMENT, whereby IT WAS PREORDAINED who should receive the word of life AND WHO SHOULD DISBELIEVE IT, who should be delivered from their sins and WHO SHOULD BE HARDENED IN THEM, who should be justified AND WHO CONDEMNED.”

    Interestingly, Colin, you have said recently “The bottom line here is that whatever God has done, is doing or will yet do, HE HAS ALREADY PURPOSED TO DO IT AND ENSURES THAT ALL EVENTS LEADS TO THAT PURPOSE COMING TO PASS.” This aligns itself perfectly with what Robert Morey stated in his “Studies In the Atonement”.....

    “He hated the reprobate and planned their sin and damnation”.

    So when you say..... “It simply means that those who show that they never wanted to be saved and who loved darkness rather than light and their sins rather than God were passed by and given their heart's desire”....all of these happen, because according to Boettner, Calvin, Luther, and YOU this is precisely how God ordained it to be. God purposed WHO would be reprobated, blinded, hardened, and condemned and he ENSURED that ALL events (their rejection, stubbornness, and disbelief) that lead to their eternal damnation come to pass.”

    So why do men “never want to be saved?”

    Because God purposed it.

    Why do men “love darkness rather than light?”

    Because God purposed it.

    Why do men “love their sin?”

    Because God purposed it. Shoot, according to Calvinism, God “created sin”.

    In regards to your unfortunate remark “Except, of course, over God, but you can, at least on this matter, claim some kind of equality with Him.”

    I’ll let that remark speak for itself. Like you, I do not have the heart to fight imaginary battles.

    God is Love.

    wingedfooted1

    Oh. Blessings to you too, Rose!

    By Anonymous wingedfooted1, at 6/06/2009 10:39 AM  

  • Hi Rose/WF1

    WF1: I ask again, for the purposes of those who (according to you)
    should worry that they are (and I quote) "...one of the reprobate. Or have friends, neighbors, or family who are" Have you any infallible means at your disposal to definitely discern who the reprobates are?

    For the purposes of any others looking in: While Calvinists believe that election is all of grace and unconditional to anything done or foreseen on the part of the sinner, yet they attribute the damnation of the lost solely to sin.

    Even when you read Calvin on the cause of the hardness of men's hearts (Institutes 3:24:12) you may notice how God purposes to leave some (not all) "...in their stubbornness..."

    It seems to me that WF1 either hasn't grasped the fact that God does not deal with us as neutrals but as guilty sinners and could rightly have damned us all, or he has his own agenda. He has already confessed elsewhere to "hating Calvinism" so we must bear that in mind when reading his comments.

    Unless we grasp that God deals with all men righteously (as Calvin teaches in 3:24:12) and leaves some sinenrs to their just deserts, then there will follow a merry-go-round that will leave you somewhat dizzy rather than enlightened.

    Calvin needs to be read as a whole as opposed to picking out statements isolated from their context and made to stand alone.

    regards,

    By Blogger Colin Maxwell, at 6/06/2009 11:13 AM  

  • Blessings, Colin.

    You asked (again) “Have you any infallible means at your disposal to definitely discern who the reprobates are?”

    It should be obvious by now that I no more believe in “unconditional election to salvation” than “unconditional reprobation to damnation”. I believe that ALL men are savable and approach them as such. I have no desire to pull up the Lily and to replace it with the TULIP.

    You said “He has already confessed elsewhere to "hating Calvinism" so we must bear that in mind when reading his comments.”

    Bless your heart. I think the quote was “that I have no love for Calvinism, but I do have a love for you Colin.”

    Regardless, I could equally say that “Colin is a Calvinistic Pastor”, so we must bear that in mind when reading his comments.

    John 14:9 reads “We love him, because he first loved us.”

    Now with the “light” of Calvinism we know the Lost can say “we hate God, because he first hated us.”

    Colin, I do have one question that I would really appreciate a response on.

    Is it possible for someone, anyone, to fully understand and embrace the 5 points of Calvinism and still end up in the lake of fire?

    wingedfooted1

    By Anonymous wingedfooted1, at 6/06/2009 9:16 PM  

  • All,

    The Issue At Hand...........

    The Sovereignty of God and the Responsibility of Man.

    In a court of law, John Calvin is called to take the stand. After being sworn in he is seated.

    Colin (the defense): Mr. Calvin. First, let me say ‘what a privilege’. Now dear Sir, in regards to your writings, you say that man acted freely when he sinned. And he did so without any extrinsic force or coercion whatsoever but by the direct inclination of his own heart. Is that what you believe?

    Calvin: That is what I wrote and what I believe.

    Colin (the defense): Thank you kind Sir. The defense rests. The witness is all yours Mr. Prosecution.

    wingedfooted1 (the prosecution): Yo Johnny. Did you not write in your “Institutes” that, and I quote, ‘That men do nothing save at the secret instigation of God, and do not discuss and deliberate on any thing but what he has previously decreed with himself and brings to pass by his secret direction’? That meaning that God causes men to sin by inciting them. Did you not say ‘that God not only foresaw the fall of the first man, and in him the ruin of his posterity; but also at his own pleasure arranged it’? And did you say “that there is no random power, or agency, or motion in the creatures, who are so governed by the secret counsel of God, that nothing happens but what he has knowingly and willingly decreed’? And did you say ‘By predestination we mean the eternal decree of God, by which he determined with himself whatever he wished to happen with regard to every man. All are not created on equal terms, but some are preordained to eternal life, others to eternal damnation; and, accordingly, as each has been created for one or other of these ends, we say that he has been predestinated to life or to death.’? Is that what you believe?

    Calvin: Yes, wingedfooted1. That is what I wrote and what I believe.

    Colin (the defense): OBJECTION your Honor! We have already qualified those statements!

    Blessings to All :-)

    wingedfooted1

    By Anonymous wingedfooted1, at 6/06/2009 9:22 PM  

  • Colin and All,

    It is 1 John 4:19 that reads "We love him, because he first loved us". Sorry for the typo.

    wingedfooted1

    By Anonymous wingedfooted1, at 6/06/2009 9:30 PM  

  • Good morning Rose/WF1:

    WF1: In order of appearance:

    I query you as regards the worry which you raise about men fearing that they are reprobate. I ask you to follow it through, but you seem unable to do so, which leaves me wondering why you should raise it in the first place.

    Unsure as to who believes in what you call “unconditional reprobation to damnation”. The Calvinist formula here is “conditional damnation.” Please forgive my reluctance for wild goose chases.

    The word “hatred” colours the situation more than my being a Calvinistic pastor. Whilst my position suggests that I am desirous to defend a position, yet it is not a defence at any price. I defend what I am comfortable with i.e. what I believe is in accordance with the Scripture. It is true, I suppose, that you could hate something and still give it a fair and unbiased hearing, but thus far you have failed to do so. It is me who has to keep introducing other statements to maintain the balance. Your quotes are highly selective, hence my constant likening you to a prosecuting lawyer whose job is to secure a conviction, whether justice is served or not. Personally I find that kind of approach repulsive.

    Re: Is it possible for someone to fully understand/embrace 5 point Calvinism and be lost, that depends on the meaning of the word
    “embrace” If you mean, is it possible for someone to understand and embrace these doctrines merely with the head and be lost – then the answer must be in the affirmative, just as it possible for people to embrace any gospel truth as true and yet fall short of embracing them with the heart.

    OTOH: If you ask if it is possible for someone to embrace with his heart the doctrine of the atonement of Christ for his sins and be lost, then the answer is “No.”

    Re: your court case scenario in the your second posting, I would imagine (as you are doing) that Mr Calvin [I don’t think your calculated rudeness of “Yo Johnny” would be allowed in a court of law. At least I would hope not] would deny your charge that God causes men to sin.

    Having alleged that Calvin taught “that God causes men to sin”

    Calvin: I vehemently deny that God causes men to sin. I am sorry that your professed hatred of my teaching has led you to overlook my statements to the contrary. I refer you to, for example, my book Concerning the Eternal Predestination of God (London: James Clarke and Co., 1961) where I distinctly write: “For the proper and genuine cause of sin is not God’s hidden counsel but the evident will of man,” (p122) This alone refutes your allegation.

    Regards,

    By Blogger Colin Maxwell, at 6/07/2009 9:01 AM  

  • Blessings, Colin.

    Once again, your answers are as confusing as the theology you adhere to. Calvin wrote....

    “That men do NOTHING save at the secret INSTIGATION of God, and do not discuss and deliberate on ANY THING but what he has previously decreed with himself and brings to pass by HIS SECRET DIRECTION” (book 1, chapter 18, section 1)

    That NOTHING would include both right and wrong, good and evil, yes and no, acceptance and rejection, belief and unbelief, truth and lie. “Nothing” is all inclusive. In short, there is not one righteous act and thought, or evil act and thought, in the entire Bible from Genesis to Revelation that wasn’t “secretly instigated” and brought to pass by God’s “secret direction”.

    INSTIGATE is defined as “to PROVOKE or stir up; to CAUSE TO DO; serve as the INCITING CAUSE OF; CAUSE TO ACT in a specified manner.”

    You don’t have to be an English major to understand the above. Boettner wrote clearly that “Calvin did not hesitate to base THE REPROBATION OF THE LOST ON THE ETERNAL PURPOSE OF GOD”. He also said that “Luther, also as certainly as Calvin, ATTRIBUTES THE ETERNAL PERDITION OF THE WICKED TO THE PLAN OF GOD”. Boettner had no issues “qualifying” what both Luther and Calvin wrote, taught, and believed, yet you continue to cry foul describing me as “unfair and biased”. These are their words, not mine. And yet you say “whatever God has done, is doing or will yet do, HE HAS ALREADY PURPOSED TO DO IT AND ENSURES THAT ALL EVENTS LEADS TO THAT PURPOSE COMING TO PASS.”

    So when you say regarding the reprobate “the Calvinist formula here is ‘conditional damnation’”, rest assured that God will fulfill that condition when He ENSURES their sin, by instigation (cause to do), and brings their damnation to pass.” As Calvin wrote, and Boettner adheres to, the reprobate were CREATED for this very end.

    Regarding the reprobate you said “I query you as regards the worry which you raise about men fearing that they are reprobate. I ask you to follow it through, but you seem unable to do so, which leaves me wondering why you should raise it in the first place.”

    I answered the question quite clearly. I believe ALL men are savable. I can’t elaborate on a theology that I don’t adhere to. You struggle with this answer because your theology teaches you that the reprobate, the majority of mankind, have been created for the sole purpose of eternal punishment, which means most of mankind aren’t savable. Why? Because since God created them specifically for the lake of fire, that is where they will end up. Again, I quote Calvin.....

    “Now, since the arrangement of all things is in the hand of God, since to him belongs the disposal of life and death, he arranges all things by his sovereign counsel, in such a way that individuals are born, who are doomed from the womb to certain death, and are to glorify him by their destruction.” (Institutes: book 3, chapter 23, section 6)

    In regards to Calvin’s last rebuttal, he could have remained true to his heart and history and responded...

    Calvin: I am sorry that you profess ‘no love’ of my teaching wingedfooted1. Had I the opportunity, I would have had a scoundrel like you burned at the stake or had your body parts dismembered and hung throughout all Geneva.

    Finally, in regards to my last question, I did not ask you if it’s “possible for someone to embrace with his heart the doctrine of the atonement of Christ for his sins and be lost”. I’m sure anyone else reading along clearly understood the question, but let me clarify it for you. So I ask again......

    Will there be any (even 1) 5 point Calvinists in the lake of fire?

    wingedfooted1

    By Anonymous wingedfooted1, at 6/07/2009 8:57 PM  

  • Colin,

    Please let me clarify my statement in regard to your question concerning “who the reprobate might be” to avoid any confusion. Above I said “I can’t elaborate on a theology that I don’t adhere to.” Obviously that is in error. One does not have to adhere to a particular school of thought to elaborate on it. I think this is something (finally) we can both agree on. What I attempted to allude to is that I have no desire to defend a doctrine (reprobation) that I do not adhere to. It is not a doctrine I embrace, so I can’t explain it, nor do I wish to. Again, I believe all men are savable.

    Grace,
    wingedfooted1

    By Anonymous wingedfooted1, at 6/07/2009 11:34 PM  

  • Hi Rose/WF1

    Rose: Thank you for continuing to host this continuing debate between me and WF1.

    WF1: Again in order of appearance:

    1) I regard your comments about my replies being confusing etc., as a put down and matter of your debating style i.e. in-your-face confrontation. It is not a style that I care much for, therefore, I will pass on to the next subject.

    2) God raises up the wicked for the day of evil (Proverbs 16:4) and uses their wicked devices to further His own holy purposes, and yet without incurring guilt. The Cross is the best example of this. Calvinists have been very careful to acknowledge this on one hand and yet maintain that God is neither the author or cause of sin. Your refusal to acknowledge this only succeeds in demonising a group of Christians with a bastard doctrine which they have not fathered and abhor as much as any one else. I still struggle to see what satisfaction this brings you or how in any sense of the word, it serves to glorify God.

    3) I also see all men as “savable” and do so on the basis of the unlimited worth of the death of Christ which is to be preached (to quote Calvin) to all sinners indiscriminately. I go further, though, and see a definite people being saved by the grace of God.

    4) Instead of acknowledging your error that Calvin taught that God caused sin – actually putting the words into Calvin’s mouth, even if only in an imaginary way in our imaginary court case – you skate on to another entirely different subject – which has been dealt with before.

    5) In relation to your question: Having qualified it for the sake of accuracy and (hopefully) to avoid any grounds for more misrepresentation, I must then answer and say “Yes – it is possible to believe with a head knowledge the doctrines of grace and be lost in hell.” I say again, Mere head knowledge of any truth cannot save the soul.

    This debate with you is beginning to weary me again. For any reading on: The secret is to read Calvin as a whole, or (better still) for a more concise view of Calvinistic belief, head for the Calvinistic Confessions of Faith e.g. the Westminster or the Synod of Dort which clearly teach that God is neither the cause or author of sin.

    I’ll leave this debate here. We are in the process of moving house and a lot of stuff remains to be packed. Time is therefore of the essence and I don’t see much point in pursuing this (second) debate with you.

    Regards,

    By Blogger Colin Maxwell, at 6/08/2009 3:57 AM  

  • Blessings, Colin.

    All I can say is that it is not my intent to participate in a “put down” or “in your face” type of confrontation. And I apologize if it came across that way. Unfortunately, communication in this format does not always reflect the true tone of the discussion. When I put certain words in CAPITALS, it is merely done to make the words stand out. I do not mean to come across as yelling at you. As I have stated before, I do have complete empathy for the Calvinistic interpretation of scripture. Still, your responses have been, respectfully, confusing.

    For example, you stated that you, like me, “see all men as savable”, but then state that you see a “definite people” being saved by God. Clearly, this “definite people” must be the elect. And Calvin said “There can be no election without its opposite, reprobation.” (book 3, chapter 23, section 1). Obviously, not all men can be elect, so most of those you encounter have to be the reprobate. Calvin added.....

    “To many this seems a perplexing subject, because they deem it most incongruous that of the great body of mankind some should be predestinated to salvation and others to destruction.” (book 3, chapter 21, section 1).

    How could you consider all men savable, if you believe that most of mankind has been predestinated to destruction? At best, I could only see you seeing “some men” as savable. I take God’s word for it when he says he wants “all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.” (1 Timothy 2:4-6) Therefore, I see all men as savable because I don’t see any predestined to destruction. The point is, you say you see “all men as savable”, but then you are quick to flag that with a qualifier.

    You say that I fail to acknowledge my error that Calvin taught that God caused sin. I make no error; I simply quote Calvin again....

    “That men do nothing save at the secret INSTIGATION of God, and do not discuss and deliberate on any thing but what he has previously decreed with himself and brings to pass by his secret direction”. (Institutes Book 1, Chapter 18, Section 1)

    As already defined, instigation means to “cause by inciting”. Additionally, the word “instigates” always implies RESPONSIBILITY FOR INITIATING THE ACTION and usually connotes a bad or evil purpose. Now since, Calvin is quoted saying that men do nothing, (and most of what man does is sinful) without the secret instigation of God, that would make God responsible for all the sin in the world.

    God forbid!

    The quotes you provide merely contradict the quote above. They don’t qualify it. If you wish to denounce the quote provided, here’s your chance to do so. But please, don’t say your quotes over-ride or cancel out the one above. Calvin was clear on what he said and many Calvinists, like Boettner, confirm it.

    You said...“God raises up the wicked for the day of evil (Proverbs 16:4) and uses their wicked devices to further His own holy purposes, and yet without incurring guilt.”

    On this I agree with you completely. I have always stated that God even uses the wickedness of men to further His holy purposes. I say God allows or permits man to sin freely, without any outside influence by God. But, again, Calvin says otherwise.....

    “Hence a distinction has been invented between doing and permitting because to many it seemed altogether inexplicable how Satan and all the wicked are so under the hand and authority of God, that he directs their malice to whatever end he pleases...” (book 1, chapter 18, section 1)

    Finally, in regards to my last question you said “Yes – it is possible to believe with a head knowledge the doctrines of grace and be lost in hell.”

    Bless your heart. That is not what I asked. I have “head knowledge” of Calvinism. I’m sure Rose, Jim, David, Todd, E~D, and others on this blog have a “head knowledge” of Calvinism.

    So I ask you for the 3rd time........

    Will there be any (even 1) 5 point Calvinists (of the non-head knowledge variety) in the lake of fire?

    Grace and Peace,
    wingedfooted1

    By Anonymous wingedfooted1, at 6/08/2009 8:40 PM  

  • Good morning Rose/WF1

    WF1: I think we are flogging a dead horse here re: what Calvin taught re: the cause of sin. We are both viewing this matter from different angles. If Calvin (or anyone for that matter) is to be read alright, then he must be read as a whole and this is something that you are consistently refusing to do. On this matter, then, I have nothing more to say on this post.

    To take up the matter of believing Calvinism and being lost: Now that you qualify it (making it the first time, rather than the third) – I quote: Will there be any (even 1) 5 point Calvinists (of the non-head knowledge variety) in the lake of fire? - my answer, then, must be “No” and here is why. The five points of Calvin give, IMO, the clearest expression of the gospel scheme. Right from man’s need of a Saviour through God’s provision for his redemption and how it is applied. Provided he is looking by faith to Christ alone as the grounds of his salvation, then a 5 point Calvinist (as indeed any Christian) is saved and will not be the lake of fire.

    I suppose I should ask whether you think 5 point Calvinists are saved at all – but I do dread the thought of another merry-go-round, for which I have neither the heart or especially the time.

    Regards,

    By Blogger Colin Maxwell, at 6/09/2009 3:57 AM  

  • Blessings, Colin.

    You said “he (Calvin) must be read as a whole and this is something that you are consistently refusing to do.”

    Again, I respectfully disagree. I have already acknowledged that you have provided quotes that, at the surface, clearly contradict the quote I have provided. But you say the other quotes you provide “qualify” it. However, other Calvinists, like Boettner, confirm Calvin that “men do nothing save the secret instigation of God”. The Roman Catholic Augustine taught that the Sovereignty of God was so great that even the hearts and wills of wicked men are directly controlled by God Himself. Augustine wrote.....

    “It is, therefore, in the power of the wicked to sin; but that in sinning they should do this or that by that wickedness is not in their power, but in God's, who divides the darkness and regulates it; so that hence even what they do contrary to God's will is not fulfilled except it be God's will.”

    Here’s what others of the “reformed” persuasion have said.....

    “God has predestined whomever he saw fit, not only to damnation, but also to the causes of it...The decree of God cannot be excluded from the CAUSE of man's corruption.” - Beza

    “It is certain that God is the first CAUSE of obduration. Reprobates are held so fast under God's almighty decree, THAT THEY CAN DO NOTHING BUT SIN...” - Zanchius

    “God inclines and FORCES the wills of wicked men into great sins.” - Martyr

    “God moves the robber to kill. He kills because God FORCES him to. But, you will say, then he is forced to sin; I permit truly that he is FORCED.” - Zwingli

    “Reprobate persons are absolutely ordained to this twofold end, to undergo everlasting punishment, and NECESSARILY TO SIN; and therefore to sin, that they may be justly punished.” - Piscator

    “God is in back of everything. He decides and CAUSES all things to happen that do happen....He has foreordained everything 'after the counsel of his will': the moving of a finger...the mistake of a typist, EVEN SIN.” - Edwin Palmer

    Causes? Forces? The common denominator is obvious. God CAUSES men to sin, which is what INSTIGATES means. It appears a lot of the Reformers understood Calvin (and Augustine) all too well. No other school of thought, biblical or otherwise, has ever made such comments. This is unique only to Calvinism. If you wish to turn your head to this, that’s fine, but don’t suggest that I refuse to understand Calvin(ism).

    You said regarding the 5 point Calvinist “Now that you qualify it (making it the first time, rather than the third).”

    Bless your heart, Colin. You knew....you knew. Everyone reading along clearly understood the question the very first time. It was only when you were pressed, did you reveal your beliefs. Even then, your attempts to cleverly re-word the question revealed your eventual answer.

    So every 5 point Calvinist is among God’s elect?

    Sad, but not surprising.

    You said “Provided he is looking by faith to Christ alone as the grounds of his salvation, then a 5 point Calvinist (as indeed any Christian) is saved and will not be in the lake of fire.”

    Any one who puts his faith in the finished works of Christ is saved. That’s just scriptural. However, this has nothing to do with Calvinism or the TULIP. Nor is the verse “saved by grace through faith” unique only to Calvinism, though they act like they have a monopoly on it. The 5 point Calvinist is saved in spite of his theology, not because of it.

    And finally, for the record, I have many, many Calvinists friends whom I consider my brothers and sisters in Christ.

    Grace and peace,
    wingedfooted1

    By Anonymous wingedfooted1, at 6/09/2009 11:58 PM  

  • Good morning Rose/WF1:

    WF1: It seems from your latest contribution here that my problem in your eyes was seeking to clarify what you were getting at. I don’t think that this was inexcusable in light of previous encounters – but there you go.

    It is a great pity that you didn’t exercise the same caution yourself. You have totally ignored my caution here when you wrote: So every 5 point Calvinist is among God’s elect? I must therefore reply again, yes – but only if they are trusting in Christ alone. I will ignore your rather cheap jibe about Calvinists acting as if we have a monopoly on Ephesians 2:8-9 etc, as irrelevant to the debate as hand.

    I am moving on from this post here. Things are very busy here for reasons stated before, although if Rose or some of the others who can remain focussed want to take up the issue, then I might find time to reply. If you (WF1) want to have the last word here – then you are welcome to suck as much satisfaction from it as you can.

    Regards,

    By Blogger Colin Maxwell, at 6/10/2009 3:58 AM  

  • Colin,

    You said “So every 5 point Calvinist is among God’s elect? I must therefore reply again, yes – but only if they are trusting in Christ alone.”

    And that was my point, its not that he’s a full blown 5 point Calvinist, or that he adheres to Calvinism that he is saved, its simply because he has put his faith in the blood and finished works of Jesus Christ. This is just scriptural and has no correlation with TULIP. No doubt there are many Calvinists today who were saved long before they adhered to the “doctrines of grace”.

    You said “I will ignore your rather cheap jibe about Calvinists acting as if we have a monopoly on Ephesians 2:8-9.”

    I did not mean to direct this to you. However, I have come across this mentality, personally, in my encounter with Calvinists. You want a BOLD statement? Check this one out from Spurgeon.....

    “I have my own private opinion that there is no such thing as preaching Christ and Him crucified, unless we preach what nowadays is called Calvinism. It is a nickname to call it Calvinism; Calvinism is the gospel, and nothing else.”

    Calvinism is the gospel and nothing else? Calvinism is a nickname for the gospel? It appears that Spurgeon believed that Calvinists had a monopoly on the very gospel of Christ. I have no doubt that there are Calvinists today that believe this very same thing, but smartly, keep their “private opinion” to themselves. So why would I think that Calvinists would have a monopoly on Ephesians 2:8-9, when they believe they can stake a claim to the very gospel?

    Some others things you said are regrettable and I choose not to re-post. I hope your move goes well.

    Every blessing in Christ.
    wingedfooted1

    By Anonymous wingedfooted1, at 6/10/2009 7:56 PM  

  • Thanks for participating here, gentlemen. I have been soooooooooo busy but am going to do a few more guest posts. Just posted one.

    By Blogger Rose~, at 6/30/2009 5:27 PM  

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