Monthly Archives For July 2008

Reasons to Remain a Calvinist

, posted by SEA

As much as I disagree with Calvinism as an interpretive scheme for understanding soteriology, there are worse errors to fall into. As an olive branch to my brothers and sisters in Christ, I’d like to offer some valid reasons I can think of to remain within the Calvinist camp.

  1. If becoming an Arminian would really be a temptation to boast for you, then please remain a Calvinist.

    Arminians are typically accused of holding to a view that allows us to boast, because we chose to receive God’s gift when others did not. Now, most people are grateful to receive gifts, and thank those who give them to us. But perhaps you’re the type who, on Christmas morning, jumps up after unwrapping presents and starts gloating about the great gifts you were smart enough to receive. Maybe you compare yourself to those who scorn gifts, and brag about how much better you are than they are. If this describes you, then I heartily recommend that you hang on to your Calvinism.

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Arminianism Today

, posted by WilliamBirch

That is a dangerous title. Arminianism Today is not, generally speaking, what Arminius espoused in his day. Yet, there is a growing number of theological Arminians who are trying to correct that problem. That is one reason why I named my blog Classical Arminianism, and also the reason why many modern Arminians call themselves Reformed Arminians; they are doing their best to distance themselves from the practical and theological ideologies which many label as “Arminian,” but have little to do with classical, Reformation Arminianism.

So, what’s the difference between classical, Reformed Arminianism and what many people hear from “Arminian” pulpits in churches today? I offer the following. Keep in mind that I am only speaking from my point of view. I have been given no authority to speak on behalf of all classical, Reformed Arminians. I am simply offering my opinion.

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The New Perspective and Ephesians

, posted by SEA

The New Perspective on Paul is generally associated with a reinterpretation of Romans and Galatians, inasmuch as these two books have been most closely associated with the Old Perspective and the traditional Protestant interpretation of justification being derived from these two epistles. However, the traditional (especially Reformed) interpretation of Ephesians 1 and 2 should also be reexamined in light of the New Perspective.

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Enjoying Consistent Calvinism

, posted by Patron

The content of this post was authored by Ben Henshaw and is posted on his behalf.

I have recently been accused of being an inconsistent Arminian because I reject Open Theism. I find it interesting that Calvinists are so concerned with consistency seeing as how they both affirm that God causes all things and is yet somehow not the author of sin.

I admit that I love consistency. I reject Calvinism primarily because I find no support for it in the pages of Scripture, and secondarily because it is so internally inconsistent. I admire Calvinists who are not afraid to “take it in the face”, so to speak, and call God the author of sin. “Traditional” Calvinists call these types “hyper” Calvinists, but in the spirit of my recent conversation, I think it is more accurate to just call them “consistent” Calvinists.

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Atonement

Samuel Telloyan, “Did Christ Die For All?”

, posted by SEA

Taken from http://www.biblebelievers.net/Calvinism/kjcalvn2.htm

This article is not written by an Arminian, but from a “moderate Calvinist” perspective. We include it because it argues for unlimited atonement, a doctrine that is so obviously biblical that many who consider themselves Calvinists embrace it.

Did Christ Die For All?
by Samual Telloyan

——————————————————————————–

Copies available from:
Bible for Today, 900 Park Avenue, Collingswood, NJ 609-854-4452
Ask for #586

Introduction
The question considered in this study of the Bible is, “For whom did Christ die?” Some answer, “For all.” Others answer, “Only for the elect.” What sayeth the Scriptures?

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I John 3:5-6; A Devotional

, posted by Martin Glynn

5 And you know this: that appeared so that those sins may be taken away. And in Him there is no sin: 6everyone who dwells in Him never sins; everyone who sins has not seen Him nor learnt of Him.

The above is my translation. First we here about “that appeared” (the pronoun being ekeinos not autos) which is reminiscent of verse 2, speaking of the future return of Christ, thus identifying Christ as the subject. However what’s interesting is that which was in the future is not being treated as if it were in the past. Both appeared and taken away are in the simple past tense, and even “to see” later in verse 6 which is also reminiscent of verse 2 is in the perfect past tense. So we have this sense that the hope of verse 3 is in some way realized for the believer.

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Graceless, Humanist Theology

, posted by WilliamBirch

The apostle Paul wrote that his prayer was that Christians would know “what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places” (Eph. 1.19-20).

Many Calvinists insist that Arminianism is a graceless theology. God has been cast aside in favor of honoring man. Humanism reigns supreme. This is due, mostly, to the Calvinists’ doctrine which mistakenly equates God’s grace with regeneration.

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The Machine Gun Hermeneutic

, posted by Martin Glynn

Many Calvinists have accused Arminianism as being more devoted to human philosophy than Biblical truth. I not only believe this to be false, but my experience often shows that those who make these accusations are the ones most guilty of them. Many of these Calvinists mishandle Scripture, choosing to ignore the nature of the book in favor of asserting the power it gives to their own proclamations.

Since I have been debating on the internet, there has been one particular use of the Bible that I have seen them use again and again. I have come to call it the machine-gun hermeneutic. Hermeneutics is the study of how to interpret Scripture, and a hermeneutic is a particular method of interpretation.

I post this as a warning to all those who may see this technique being used. Do not be fooled. It does not demonstrate that an argument is biblical, but instead quite the opposite.

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What About Pharaoh? God Hardened Pharaoh’s Heart

, posted by Eric Landstrom

What About Pharaoh? God Hardened Pharaoh’s Heart

Some consider God’s hardening of Pharaoh’s heart as clear evidence that God predestinates people to reprobation and ultimately, to condemnation. The Arminian view is that Pharaoh, of his own volition, had long set his heart against Israel and the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and for His part, God offered Pharaoh five opportunities to honestly repent and live before finally strengthening Pharaoh’s resolve to follow through upon the hardness of heart that Pharaoh harbored against Israel long before God instructed Moses to deliver Israel from the hand of Pharaoh.

Read Exodus 2:22-25. God provides us two reasons for delivering Israel:

    1) He heard their groanings.
    2) He remembered His covenenant (in other words: the time had come for Him to honor His covenant).

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Augustine the Libertarian

, posted by Ben Henshaw

Some refer to Calvinism as Augustinianism. John Calvin took the teachings of the later Augustine and systematized them. The only major difference between the later Augustine and Calvin’s theology is the doctrine of perseverance. Augustine believed that one could be truly regenerated and yet not be granted the gift of perseverance. Calvin denied that one who was truly regenerated could fail to persevere. But what about the early Augustine?

The early Augustine had a theology that was little different than the theology which had dominated the church since apostolic teachings. Augustine held to a libertarian view of human freedom and only began to move away from that view when embroiled in debate and controversy with the Pelagians. In these debates his theology began to shift.

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Election and Predestination – Life in the Spirit

, posted by Patron

The content of this post was authored by Ben Henshaw and is posted on his behalf.

A co-worker of mine bought me a Life in The Spirit Study Bible [which used to go by the name Full Life Study Bible]. This Study Bible has several articles and verse by verse notes from a Pentecostal Arminian perspective. The notes are well researched and easy to understand. I do not hold to a pre-trib view, however, so I found the notes and articles on eschatology unsatisfying and unconvincing, though I think they did a fine job describing the pre-trib position. The only other draw back is that this study Bible is, to my knowledge, only available in the KJV and NIV.

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1 John 3:4; A Devotional

, posted by Martin Glynn

Hello. Ron Fay is taking a brief vacation and in the meantime, I shall be taking his place. Though I cannot promise to do as well of a job in exegesis of Scripture for you as Ron, I promise you I will do my best. With that said, let us move on to what is truly important, the Word of God:

Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness.

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God

, posted by Patron

The content of this post was authored by Ben Henshaw and is posted on his behalf.

Sometimes Calvinists will say that Arminians have a small God. I have been told by Calvinists that the Calvinist God is “bigger” and therefore superior to my “little” Arminian God. Usually this claim is framed within the context of whether or not God can truly “save” anyone in an Arminian framework. Since the Arminian believes that God requires the genuine response of faith on the part of His creatures, then He is apparently quite small compared to the Calvinist God who just overpowers His creatures with His grace and makes sure that they are saved, etc. etc…you get the point.

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Calvinism and Job: Something to Think About

, posted by Ben Henshaw

Most Christians are familiar with the story of Job. Job endured severe trials but did not curse God (though he did question God). The emphases of the book are many. It is probably mainly concerned with a faulty theology which claimed that bad things don’t happen to good people. But how does any of this relate to Calvinism and Arminianism?

We are told in the first two chapters of Job that Satan presented himself before the Lord and the Lord pointed out the righteousness of Job. It would appear that God was proud of Job’s righteous conduct and wanted Satan to take notice. God was truly pleased with Job.

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Is The Drawing of John 12:32 Universal or Particular?

, posted by Patron

The content of this post was authored by Ben Henshaw and is posted on his behalf.

Before examining some of the other Calvinists “proof texts” for irresistible regeneration, we will take a moment to deal with a common Calvinist objection to the Arminian appeal to Jn. 12:32 as an example of universal “drawing”.

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Will Riddle, “A Middle Option?”

, posted by theriddles

People are often tempted to believe that there is some mediate option which will allow them to avoid the Calvinist/Arminian debate. This inclination comes from a commendable impulse — to hold fast to Scriptural truth…

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