A Response to “5 Myths About Calvinism”

By Dr. Leighton Flowers

Calvinistic scholar, Dr. Greg Forester, just released an article titled “Five Myths about Calvinism” through Crossway and I would like to provide a critique here. I’ve listed Forester’s myths followed by my responses below each one:

Myth #1: We don’t have free will

Is this a myth about Calvinism? Calvinists affirm “compatibilistic free will,” but they deny we have “libertarian free will” which is what most people think of when they talk about “free will” in general (i.e. the ability to refrain or not refrain from a given moral action, the power of contraying choice, self-determination. For instance, “The person who rejected Christ and remained lost could and should have willingly accepted Christ so as to be saved.”)

Compatibilistic Calvinists have redefined “free will” to mean “acting in accordance with one’s desire,” but it should be noted that those desires on Calvinism are determined by Divine decree, which are factors beyond the agent’s control (i.e. a fallen man cannot desire to accept the gospel appeal due to an inborn nature inherited from Adam, so he rejects Christ because that’s “his desire” and since it’s his desire it is “compatibilistically free” not “libertarianly free.”) If most people understood this is what Calvinists mean by “free will,” would they agree this is a myth?

Myth #2: We are saved against our will

As noted in the first point, on Compatibilistic Calvinism our wills are determined to act based upon factors outside the agent’s control. God, by divine decree, decides man’s nature and circumstances to be such that they will always choose that which God has decided they will choose. <read a Compatibilist’s explanation here>

On Calvinism, there is no such thing as what the human really wants apart from God’s desire in the matter (i.e., God’s desire as to what the human agent will desire). In the compatibilist scheme, human desire is wholly derived from and wholly bound to the divine desire. God’s decree encompasses everything, even the desires that underlie human choices.

This is a critical point because it undercuts the plausibility of the compatibilist’s argument that desire can be considered the basis for human freedom. When you define freedom in terms of ‘doing what one wants to do,’ it initially appears plausible only because it subtly evokes a sense of independence or ownership on the part of the human agent for his choices.

But once we recognize (as we must within the larger deterministic framework encompassing compatibilism) that those very desires of the agent are equally part of the environment that God causally determined, then the line between environment and agent becomes blurred if not completely lost. The human agent no longer can be seen as owning his own choices, for the desires determining those choices are in no significant sense independent of God’s decree. <for more on this point READ THIS>

Myth #3: We are total depraved

The author is simply explaining why Calvinists don’t mean by this phrase that mankind is “as bad as they could be.” Calvinists affirm that even lost people can do relatively good things. I take no issue with this point.

But, Calvinists do teach that people are born as completely disabled to see, hear, understand and turn to Christ “as they can be.” They affirm what is called “Total Inability,” which means that fallen people cannot respond positively even to God’s own inspired appeals to be reconciled from the fall.

I don’t find this Calvinistic doctrine taught within the scriptures, do you?

Myth #4: God does not love the lost

Many Calvinistic brethren, when discussing the sincerity of God’s love for all people, seem to distance themselves from the inevitable conclusions drawn by the implications of their own systematic. While attempting to maintain some semblance of divine love for those unconditionally rejected by God in eternity past, they appeal to God’s common provisions such as rain and sunshine as a type of “love.” But can such provisions be deemed as genuinely loving given the Scripture’s own definition of love found in 1 Corinthians 13?

It should be noted that some “higher” forms of Calvinism do not even attempt to defend the idea that God sincerely loves everyone. In a work titled, The Sovereignty of God, by A. W. Pink, he wrote, “God loves whom He chooses. He does not love everybody.” He further argued that the word “world” in John 3:16 (“For God so loved the world…“) “refers to the world of believers (God’s elect), in contradistinction from ‘the world of the ungodly.’”

The issue comes down to how one defines the characteristic of love. According to Paul, “love does not seek its own,” and thus it is best described as “self-sacrificial” rather than “self-serving” (1 Cor. 13:5). As Jesus taught, “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” It seems safe to say that love at its very root is self-sacrificial. Anything less than that should not be called “love.” One may refer to “kindness” or “care” in consideration of some common provisions for humanity, but unless it reaches the level of self-sacrifice it does not seem to meet the biblical definition of true love.

Given that biblical definition of love as “self-sacrifice,” let us consider Christ’s command to love our enemies. Is this an expectation Christ himself is unwilling to fulfill? In other words, is He being hypocritical in this command? Of course not. The very reason He told His followers to love their enemies is “in order that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven…” (Matt. 5:45).

The meaning is undeniable. We are to self-sacrificially love our enemies because God loves all His enemies in that way perfectly. He loves both “the righteous and the unrighteous” in exactly the same way we are told to love our enemies. The greatest commandment instructs us to “love our neighbor as ourselves” (Lev. 19:18; Matt. 22:37-38). “And who is our neighbor?” (Lk. 10:29). The pagan Samaritans, who were detested as enemies of God.

In short, Jesus is teaching us to self-sacrificially love everyone, even our worst enemies, because that reflects the very nature of God Himself. Is that what Calvinists consistently affirm? It does not appear so.

Myth #5: Calvinism is primarily concerned with the sovereignty of God and predestination

Granted, John Calvin as a theologian certainly taught on a wide variety of doctrines, but his teaching on predestination and election were the most controversial and thus what he has become most known for throughout church history.

<See the quotes from John Piper and John Calvin HERE for examples of their most difficult and controversial doctrinal statements.>

I am not suggesting a “Calvinist” must agree with John Piper or even John Calvin on every theological point in order to be considered a “Calvinist.” But if you are going to proudly promote this label shouldn’t you at least affirm the basic theological claims over the issues that made Calvinism such a heated topic in the church?  The major reason we even know of John Calvin and “Calvinism” is because of these self-described “dreadful” doctrines concerning predestination, election, free will, sovereignty, etc.  If you cannot affirm his statements on at least those issues, then may I suggest you stop promoting the label “Calvinist?”

In conclusion, one must ask why these doctrines have been so controversial within the church if indeed mankind’s beliefs are always in accordance with what God has decreed for them to believe? Has God decreed/determined His church to be divided over these doctrines, or are our differences truly a result of free, yet fallible, human wills? Just something to consider.

419 thoughts on “A Response to “5 Myths About Calvinism”

  1. Thanks Eric,

    With the resurgence of Calvinism (YRR), Calvinists are regularly telling us what they don’t mean (cuz it is so easy to see that they do mean it!).

    Per the first myth…. “acting in accordance with one’s desire,” we hear this non-stop from our resident Calvinists. They sin because their desire and nature is to sin. But that never takes into account Adam’s sin. Calvinists tell us we all “act in accordance with our desires and sin nature,” but what of Adam who did not have one?

    Per the second myth… “but this is done without violating the will’s freedom.” This is the height of hypocrisy and simply playing with words. No one can say “irresistible grace” and then say we are free to choose it. That is just silly and unbiblical. God extends His grace and hand and mercy countless times in Scripture and many times He is refused/ resisted. In any case…. insisting on “man’s freedom” and insisting that the thing he “freely chose” was “made irresistible by God” is just nonsensical.

    Per the third myth, we are told by resident Calvinists that man is totally depraved and can do no good thing (never mind the unbeliever sacrificing himself for others). Now…. apparently —–since the author can see that man is not so depraved he cannot chose patience, kindness, love, goodness…. he needs to redefine TD and say…. “Uh, only depraved in so far as hearing God’s call.” Yeah. Right. Just moving the goal posts.

    Per the 4th myth, see my many posts about MacArthur’s ridiculous claim of sunshine (for the 9-year-old kind in a slave mine shaft) as the sign of God’s love.

    Per the 5th myth. Whatever. His claim that Calvin was best for his “uniquely ‘high’ doctrine of the work of the Holy Spirit” can be discussed with out Pentecostal brothers.

    1. So …. if the non-Calvinists residents here denounce the doctrine of total depravity, are you saying “Partial Depravity” or “Zero Depravity” Which of those 2 views?

      1. jtleosala
        So …. if the non-Calvinists residents here denounce the doctrine of total depravity, are you saying “Partial Depravity” or “Zero Depravity” Which of those 2 views?

        br.d
        Firstly Calvinists doctrine of total depravity is like a goal-post they move wherever they want it – whatever is expedient at the moment.

        Take for example John Calvin declaring that in the Calvinist fold there is a -quote LARGE MIXTURE of hypocrites who have nothing of Christ but the name and appearance”. These are Calvinists whom Calvin’s god -quote “holds out salvation as a savor of greater condemnation” and he will -quote “strike with greater blindness”

        Obviously these Calvinists are NOT ELECT – which means they are TOTALLY DEPRAVED.

        So here is your question back to you – are these Calvinists “Partially Depraved” or “Zero Depraved”?

        Since according to Calvin there is a LARGE MIXTURE of TOTALLY DEPRAVED Calvinists.
        And since Calvinists have absolutely no idea who among them are TOTALLY DEPRAVED
        This shows that TOTALLY DEPRAVITY (for all practical purposes) is just a buzzword that Calvinists mindlessly recite.

      2. Hello, My name is Melody Luecke. I was once a 3pointer. I had excepted Cal due to the teaching of Eternal Security. I knew that I could not lose my salvation, so I excepted Cal on this basis, since the other Arm taught that one could lose salvation. In 1997 I was introduced to Right Division thru The Plot written by Bob Enyart, that totally changed my mind. I now understand, Election, Chosen, Called Ect. I’m ever so thankful for the clear teaching on how to understand how God thinks, feels, and moves men. Now as far as total depravity. My definition is this, we are totally unable to pay for our sin. We are not unable to choose Christ, even in the temple they had such a thing as FREE-WILL OFFERINGS!! Our Sin is of such that our works due to the stain of sin are filthy rags, notice, rags, not the body of a person. For Christ took on Flesh and became Sin that we might become Righteousness in Him. I never could except limited atonement or the teaching that babies may go to hell if they are not chosen for Salvation. I threw a lady out of my apartment way back when, when she sought to teach me this heresy. I no longer hold to either theological position. I hold to A Living Theological Biblicist Position. I’ve coined this term due to my own personal opinions concerning the Open Theism Position that I’m uncomfortable with. I no long want to put myself in any Man’s Understanding of Who God is and how he chooses to work among his Creatures. I do believe Open Theism is Closer to what the Bible Clearly teaches, there are just a few tenets I can’t seem to wrap my mind around that I believe due to the Fact that we are finite and God is infinite that we tend to come to conclusions in logic that we possibly should not make. I really appreciate the testimony given on this site.

  2. Wonderful post!

    MYTH #1
    1) Compatibilistic Calvinists have redefined “free will” to mean “acting in accordance with one’s desire,”
    2) But it should be noted that those desires on Calvinism are determined by Divine decree, which are FACTORS BEYOND THE agent’s control”

    We need to be mindful of how slippery Calvinist language is.

    Firstly, Compatiblistic free will is NOT defined as “acting in accordance with one’s desire”.

    People act in accordance to desires in both Compatibilistic as well as Libertarian free will.

    The only factor Compatiblistic free will brings – is that people are DESIGNED to be/do/desire whatever they are determined to be/do/desire by factors beyond their control.

    Acting in accordance to desires exists in both cases – so this statement serves Calvinists by introducing a red herring.

    Secondly, Compatiblistic free will was defined before Calvinism existed. Its definition is simple:
    Compatibilism is the belief that “free will” and Determinism are mutually compatible. (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy).

    Thirdly, Determinism incorporates the concept of “EVENT CAUSATION” in which EVERY event is CAUSED by an antecedent event.
    Domino#1 – CAUSES Domino#2 – CAUSES Domino#3 – etc.

    In this context dominoes are “acting in accordance to their design”. So statement #1 above says nothing more than that in Compatibilism humans act in accordance to their design. Just exactly as it is for Dominoes.

    Compatibilism therefore explicitly resolves to things functioning as INSTRUMENT CAUSATION – functioning within Causal chains.
    Calvinists have no way of logically showing that a human in this context has any clear form of AGENT CAUSATION.
    Clearly however in this case humans function as instruments.

    This then resolves to a world of mon-agency in which the THEOS functions as the only agent and all created things whether sentient or not function as instruments whose activities fall in accordance to supernatural forces of divine decrees.

    Calvin himself clearly asserts this – that the CAUSE OF EVENTS are NOT to be attributed simply to the nature of the instrument.
    -Quote:
    God is the PRIMARY AGENT, because the beginning and cause of all motion. But if the government of God thus extends
    to all his works, it is a CHILDISH CAVIL TO CONFINE IT TO NATURAL INFLUX. Those moreover who confine the providence of God within narrow limits, as if he ALLOWED all things to be BORNE ALONG FREELY according to a perpetual LAW OF NATURE, do not more defraud God of his glory…” (institutes)

    1. In the case of Adam and Eve before the fall, they acted according to their own desire because GOD DECREED NOT TO INTERVENE. Before the fall, Adam and Eve operates on their own self without divine intervention as regard to the exercise of their freedom so that they are held by God accountable and became culpable of their acts.

      1. It means that Adam and Eve were able to exercise their own free will before the fall because God decreed to Himself that He would just sit back and just let Adam and Eve do what they want according to their own desire. If this is really compatibilism, then they have really acted in accordance with their own free will.

      But, I think Eve’s decision to disobey was influenced by the serpent (not God) – This will ruin down the definition of Libertarian Free will of Man as cuddled here by the other side. It can no longer be called as freedom when there is presence of intervening factors.

      2. If I’m going to ask my opponents here, the question : (I assert that God choose not to intervene-this was His decree before the fall of man) Why did Eve and Adam ate the fruit, given the fact that they are having Libertarian Free Will, created after the image of God and without sin nature? What is the answer of the other side?

      1. jtleosala
        In the case of Adam and Eve before the fall, they acted according to their own desire because GOD DECREED NOT TO INTERVENE.

        br.d
        This is an excellent example of the dishonest language of half-truth.

        Calvin’s god from the foundation of the world decreed EVERY neurological impulse Adam and Eve would ever have.
        And then -quote “DECREED NOT TO INTERVENE”
        And the Calvinist actually thinks people are not going to see through that! Whew!

        jtleosala
        Before the fall, Adam and Eve operates on their own self without divine intervention

        br.d
        Same double-speak as before – same answer – this is the dishonest language of half-truth.

        jtleosala
        as regard to the exercise of their freedom so that they are held by God accountable and became culpable of their acts.
        Adam and Eve were able to exercise their own free will

        br.d
        How many dishonest half-truths does the Calvinist think he can get people to swallow?

        In Calvinism the creature is **ONLY** free do do/be what Calvin’s god renders-certain he do/be.
        Nothing more – nothing less.
        Anything beyond that is simply double-speak trying to mislead people.

        jtleosala
        before the fall because God decreed to Himself that He would just sit back and just let Adam and Eve do what they want according to their own desire.

        br.d
        In John Calvin’s Geneva you would have had your tongue burnt through with a hot iron for saying that.
        I provided a quote from Calvin’s institutes denouncing your claim.

        But the Calvinist wants to MAKE UP STUFF OUT OF THIN AIR
        Here are some more quotes from Calvin on this topic.
        – Men DO NOTHING save at the SECRET INSTIGATION OF god
        – Men can deliberately DO NOTHING unless he INSPIRE IT
        – They are not only in bondage to him, but are FORCED to serve him.
        – It is quite frivolous refuge to say that god otiosely permits evil, when Scripture shows Him not only willing but the AUTHOR of them.”

        jtleosala
        If this is really compatibilism, then they have really acted in accordance with their own free will.

        br.d
        This was already addressed in my post concerning EVENT CAUSATION.
        A high-school student should be able to understand it.

        jtleosala
        But, I think Eve’s decision to disobey was influenced by the serpent (not God) –

        br.d
        This was already addressed in my post about how creatures function as nothing more than INSTRUMENTS in Calvinism
        Satan – i.e. Domino#1 – causes Eve i.e. Domino # 2 etc…..
        I provided the quote from John Calvin who clearly declares his god is the PRIMARY CAUSE.

        I think its funny how Calvinists even try to evade Calvin! :-]

        jtleosala
        This will ruin down the definition of Libertarian Free will of Man as cuddled here by the other side. It can no longer be called as freedom when there is presence of intervening factors.

        br.d
        A puffer fish can puff himself up to make himself look 5 times bigger than he really is.
        But there is never any logical argument behind his boasting – its always nothing more than huffing and puffing.

        jtleosala
        I’m going to ask my opponents here, the question : (I assert that God choose not to intervene-this was His decree before the fall of man)

        br.d
        I’ve already addressed this fallacious presupposition – see above

        jtleosala
        Why did Eve and Adam ate the fruit, given the fact that they are having Libertarian Free Will, created after the image of God and without sin nature? What is the answer of the other side?

        br.d
        Do you know anything at all about Determinism vs IN-determinism?
        You really should – given the belief system you’ve embraced is founded on Universal Divine Causal Determinism.

        This Calvinist question essentially asks “what is Free will” in a world of IN-determinism.

        Without realizing it the Calvinist’s own arguments provide that answer.

        All of the characteristics of free-will that do not exist within Calvinism any more than sound exists within a pure vacuum
        These very free-will characteristics the Calvinist seeks to MASQUERADE as existing within Calvinism.
        These are your answer.

        It is a free-will endowed by the creator that does not RENDER-CERTAIN their every neurological impulse before they are born
        It is the very free-will the Calvinist wants – but which determinism does not allow him to have.

  3. Myth #4: Concerning divine love in Calvinism.

    In Egypt the Pharaoh performs the governmental role of being a “God-Man-Ruler”.
    In this context all things in Egypt – including camels, cows, and humans are simply nothing more than assets for him to dispose of according to his good pleasure. Calvin’s god manifests the same model.

    Calvin’s god out-Pharaohs Pharaoh.
    He also out-Lucifer’s Lucifer.

    According to Edwards he “flicks people into the lake of fire like spiders” for his good pleasure.

    Whatever can be said about this kind of love – it is completely UTILITARIAN – and the exact opposite of self-sacrificing.

    1. br.d
      Calvinists do not claim that God has a self-sacrificing love for all.

      They only claim that the Bible demands that believers have that kind of love for all.

    2. God does not love the following people :

      1. Jesus Christ did not offer His life to the False prophets and False deities, False teachers (they are human beings too, but God does not love them. In fact false prophets are to be stoned to death, never to be given a chance anymore to live)
      2. Goats that are destined to Hell – Matthew 25:41 “Then He will also say to those on the left hand, (the goats) depart from Me, you cursed into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels.” These “goats” mentioned here are people.
      3. The Canaanites including their babies, and non-combatants (they are people not animals) but they were inhumanly annihilated as per command of God to Joshua as they enter the promise land.
      4. God loved Jacob but hated Esau – Romans 9:13
      5. Judas one of Christ’s disciples has been damned.
      6. The criminal crucified at the left side of Jesus Christ (same as the position of the goats at the left side) was thrown to hell
      7. The Chaff, Tares, Swine, stony ground, thorny ground and wayside soil… all of them failed and faces damnation
      8. Jesus Christ said in John 10:11, 15 ” I lay down My life for the Sheep” – not to the entire humanity because not all humans belongs to the sheep. If Christ did not offer His life for these people then we can conclude that God does not love all humanity. He only offer His love to the elect-the sheep of His pasture.
      9. The Egyptian babies murdered by the angel of death @ the “Passover” in Egypt is a proof that God does not love them
      10. Romans 9:21-22 “Does not the Potter have power over the clay, from the same lump to make one vessel for honor and another for dishonor? What if God, wanting to show His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath prepared for destruction? (According to verse 22 God created vessel (people) intended for destruction, the non-Calvinists are so angry and are protesting against God for this thing. They cannot accept it)
      11. The majority of the human race swept away by the global flood is a proof that God does not love them
      12. The residents of Sodom and Gomorrah burned with fire is another proof that God does not love all people.
      13. The fact that Jesus said that : “Few people are entering the narrow gate and few finds it” is a proof that people in Heaven are always in the minority, while the rest of the majority are damned to hell
      14. If really God loves the entire humanity then nobody will go to hell.
      15. It cannot be denied that God picked up some and left out the others.

      1. I do not conflate Calvinism with scripture.
        All of the examples provided simply depict the god of scripture – who is a different god than Calvin’s god.
        Its just that simple :-]

  4. Myth #5: Calvinism is primarily concerned with the sovereignty of God.

    I believe this is a mask that Calvinists wear.

    Kenneth Burke (1897), an American literary theorist, writes concerning the human behavior pattern of VICARIOUS BOASTING:
    -quote:
    “One may note the subtle ways in which IDENTIFICATION WITH A GROUP serves as braggadocio. By it, the modest man can indulge in the most outrageous ‘corporate boasting’. He identifies himself with some corporate unit (church, guild, company, lodge, party, team, college, city, nation, etc.) –and by profuse praise of this unit, HE PRAISES HIMSELF. For he ‘owns shares’ in the corporate unit—and by ‘rigging the market’ the value of the stock as a whole, he runs up the value of his personal holdings. ”

    Calvinists know if they boast of themselves – they will discerned as carnal. VICARIOUS BOASTING therefore functions as a subtle maneuver that gets around the problem. The claim is that one is boasting of the glory of a THEOS – when the truth is VICARIOUS BOASTING by remapping one’s personal IDENTIFICATION with an elite group.

    1. Myth # 5 — Mis-represents the Calvinists’ position. We always affirm God’s Sovereignty. The non-Calvinists residents here are the ones who accuse that thing to us calling it as a “myth”.

  5. Myth #6:
    Calvinism doesn’t use double speak. It just speaks double think.

    Myth #7:
    Calvinism doesn’t believe anyone is predetermined to go hell. They just believe only some are predetermined to go heaven. Unless you want to bring up Esau, Pharaoh, Judas, who are a model of every nonbeliever that ever existed that were predetermined to go to hell before they were born.

    Myth #8:
    Calvinism doesn’t try and hide it’s fatalistic deterministic outcome to unsuspecting hearers. They just treat it with “special prudence and care” (Inverted comas quote: Westminster Confession)

    Myth: #9:
    Calvinism doesn’t claim to have another gospel. They just have another “secret counsel” way of when someone is saved before they are saved.

    Myth: #10:
    Calvinism doesn’t believe that it is essential to believe in “election for only some by a secret decree before you are born” to be saved. They just believe if you don’t believe in it then you are not saved.

    Anyone want to add to the Myths?

    1. Wonderful!!

      Myth # 10
      Calvin’s god wills all men saved – but not in such a way that he wills ALL men saved.

      Myth #11
      When Calvin’s god decrees he will drop a baby in to the fire of Moloch – he can also decree he had no part in the event.
      He can decree his only role in the event – was to -quote NOT INTERVENE.

      Myth #12
      Calvin’s god communicates to Adam that he WILLS Adam’s obedience – deceiving Adam into believing it.
      When he SECRETLY wills the opposite.
      All he has to do then in order to evade responsibility – is to decree himself NOT DISHONEST.

      Myth #13
      Calvin’s god making himself irresistible is not the same thing as witch-craft’s doctrine of magic potion number nine .:-]

  6. The issue of “double speak” as per Myth # 6 according to Br.D. has been a cyclic mode of defense here. He just cannot accept the fact that both issues are true in Scripture and that he just refuses to believe it as it is … because he is chained to his loyalty to logic.

    1. Thank you for acknowledging my discipline to logic.

      If I cast out double-speak by the discipline of sound reasoning – by what discipline do you cast it out?

      Do you recognize the MODE of that question?
      Its from Jesus – and his logic is wonderful! :-]

      No double-speak comes out of his lips.
      And that fact differentiates Calvinism from Christ.

      1. Br.D. writes : “If I cast out double-speak by the discipline of sound reasoning – by what discipline do you cast it out?

        My Response : The authority of Scripture is the weapon that I am using over your so called logic. You don’t need anymore the authority of Scriptures to believe on both sides on what it teaches over our disputes here. You have been idolizing your logic than the authority of Scriptures. Wow… my goodness !

      2. Br.D. “If I cast out double-speak by the discipline of sound reasoning – by what discipline do you cast it out?

        jtleosala
        The authority of Scripture is the weapon that I am using over your so called logic. You don’t need anymore the authority of Scriptures to believe on both sides on what it teaches over our disputes here. You have been idolizing your logic than the authority of Scriptures. Wow… my goodness !

        br.d
        Bible cults make the exact same claim – so congratulations you have the same authority as a cult.

        You call it my logic – but that is fallacious.
        When you go into a grocery store and give the clerk $10 dollars for a $3 item – you expect to get back $7 dollars.

        The difference between us is our handling of logic.
        I handle logic according to a love for discerning the truth.
        For you X is TRUE when you need it to be TRUE – and X is FALSE when you need it to be FALSE.

        For example, Calvin’s god can make decree X INFALLIBLE – but NOT INFALLIBLE.
        INFALLIBLE when you need it to be – for one argument.
        And NOT INFALLIBLE when you need it to be for another argument

        And that is simply double-mindedness and childish thinking.

        You know full well that my statements are logically true.
        You seek to get around them by reciting some double-speak talking-point over and over because that’s all you have for authority.

        Every man is given talents and he is judged according to how he handles them.
        Language, logic, and scripture are talents.

        Calvinism plays shell games with language logic and scripture.
        That is why Calvinism’s language log ago evolved into double-speak

  7. I quote here the above post : “Given that biblical definition of love as “self-sacrifice,” let us consider Christ’s command to love our enemies. Is this an expectation Christ himself is unwilling to fulfill? In other words, is He being hypocritical in this command? Of course not. The very reason He told His followers to love their enemies is “in order that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven…” (Matt. 5:45).”

    “The meaning is undeniable. We are to self-sacrificially love our enemies because God loves all His enemies in that way perfectly. He loves both “the righteous and the unrighteous” in exactly the same way we are told to love our enemies. The greatest commandment instructs us to “love our neighbor as ourselves” (Lev. 19:18; Matt. 22:37-38). “And who is our neighbor?” (Lk. 10:29). The pagan Samaritans, who were detested as enemies of God.”

    “In short, Jesus is teaching us to self-sacrificially love everyone, even our worst enemies, because that reflects the very nature of God Himself. Is that what Calvinists consistently affirm? It does not appear so.”

    My Response :

    1.The command to love our enemies does not give assurance nor automatically teaches an access to Salvation provided by God.
    2. Jesus Christ according to Him. He only offered His life for the sheep. Not all humanity belongs to the sheep of His pasture. If Jesus Christ did not offer His life to the entire humanity, then we can conclude now that God does not love all humans on earth.
    3. Honestly, Does the non-Calvinist residents here affirm that they also love the false prophets, false teachers, the devil and his minions?

    1. I quote here the above post : “Given that biblical definition of love as “self-sacrifice,” let us consider Christ’s command to love our enemies. Is this an expectation Christ himself is unwilling to fulfill? In other words, is He being hypocritical in this command? Of course not. The very reason He told His followers to love their enemies is “in order that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven…” (Matt. 5:45).”

      jtleosala
      “The meaning is undeniable. We are to self-sacrificially love our enemies because God loves all His enemies in that way perfectly. He loves both “the righteous and the unrighteous”

      br.d
      Yeah right!
      As Calvinist D.A. Carson says to young Calvinists “you just can tell lost souls what KIND of love god has for them”
      He may have the KIND of love that throws them into a lake of fire – for his good pleasure.

      That model DOES NOT fit the model scripture declares.

      jtleosala
      in exactly the same way we are told to love our enemies. The greatest commandment instructs us to “love our neighbor as ourselves”

      br.d
      Anyone who know anything about Calvinism knows that Calvin’s god DOES NOT CONFORM to his own commandments.
      In Calvinism – his commandments are applicable to man only.

      Be ye holy as Calvin’s god is holy?
      That would mean a father is to throw his baby into the fire.

      jtleosala
      The command to love our enemies does not give assurance nor automatically teaches an access to Salvation provided by God.

      br.d
      No-one disagrees with this.

      jtleosala
      Jesus Christ according to Him. He only offered His life for the sheep.

      br.d
      That doctrine is unique to Calvinism and is rejected by the preponderance of Christianity.

      jtleosala
      Honestly, Does the non-Calvinist residents here affirm that they also love the false prophets, false teachers, the devil and his minions?

      br.d
      Silly question – the answer is “Be ye holy as your heavenly father is holy”

      David Hunt has the best response for this in his book “What love is this?”
      Answer: The KIND of love that takes pleasure in decreeing babies be dropped into the fire of Moloch.

      1. jtleosala
        “The meaning is undeniable. We are to self-sacrificially love our enemies because God loves all His enemies in that way perfectly. He loves both “the righteous and the unrighteous”

        (I never say the above statement. It’s not mine)

  8. JTL asks
    “Honestly, Does the non-Calvinist residents here affirm that they also love the false prophets, false teachers, the devil and his minions?”

    My reply – False teachers and prophets – Yes, they are part of the world that Jesus loved in John 3:16. It’s not God’s fault that they do not love Him.

    My reply – Devil and his minions – No God does not love them now because they rebelled. God did love them once before they rebelled. It’s not God’s fault that they rebelled.

    Why would this be a hard question to answer?

    1. And so… Your allies might get bad with your statement that is not consistent with their stand that they are to love all of their enemies, because you say God does not love now the minions of the devil. These minions includes people of all sort whom being used and enslaved by the devil like: God haters, atheists, witchcraft, the Pope, etc…

      But you say that you need to love your enemies ? including the Calvinists ?… Really ? How much degree of love you can afford to your enemies ? Is it of equal love per head without any favoritism?

      Actually, the command to love our neighbor/enemies can only be accomplished if we can offer them love of equal degree as we love do ourselves. If not, then no one can comply to the command of God because our compliance will be measured by the level or degree of love we give to ourselves. May I ask you, If you buy new clothes, new car, do you also do this same to your neighbor? or you just do it for yourself and give those old clothes and 2nd hand car that you don’t like anymore?

      1. JTL writes, And so… Your allies might get bad with your statement that is not consistent with their stand that they are to love all of their enemies, because you say God does not love now the minions of the devil.”

        My reply – when I said that God doesn’t love “the devil and his minions”, I meant the devil and his angels, not human beings. Twist twist twist.

        God does love all evil people and wants them to turn from their ways – “Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord God: and not that he should return from his ways, and live?” Ezekiel 18:23.

        Just because I might not love a stranger like I love my daughter cannot be compared to the “secret decree” of Calvinism. Which says that God only loves some from before they were born for secret reasons. The rest for the same secret reason are born into the world unloved by God from before they were born according to Calvinism.

        ‭‭

    2. jtleosala
      Honestly, Does the non-Calvinist residents here affirm that they also love the false prophets, false teachers, the devil and his minions?

      br.d
      Silly question – the answer is “Be ye holy as your heavenly father is holy”

      My Response : My question remains unanswered. Why?, because you cannot afford to love the false prophets, false teachers, witchcraft, even the Pope of the Roman Catholic. This contradicts your position that God loves all people and that you do the same. It’s your unlimited love that is what can we call as Myth # 14.

      1. jtleosala
        Honestly, Does the non-Calvinist residents here affirm that they also love the false prophets, false teachers, the devil and his minions?

        br.d
        Silly question – the answer is “Be ye holy as your heavenly father is holy”

        jtleosala
        My Response : My question remains unanswered. Why?, because you cannot afford to love the false prophets, false teachers, witchcraft, even the Pope of the Roman Catholic. This contradicts your position that God loves all people and that you do the same. It’s your unlimited love that is what can we call as Myth # 14.

        br.d
        If that answer from Jesus’ doesn’t work for you another can be provided.
        “Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do”

        Perhaps you have not read the books “Tortured for Christ” and “The Hiding Place”
        Here we have evil people committing horrible atrocities – and believers relying on the strength of Jesus Christ to forgive them.
        Was the source of that forgiveness human or did it come from God?

        Calvinism’s position is that God inspires and supernaturally strengthens believers to love those who torture them.
        But that same God withholds his love and forgiveness from those people.
        That position is a denial of “Be ye holy as your heavenly Father is holy”

        Make Jesus your golden standard instead of John Calvin – and all will be well with you.

  9. I quote here the above post : “Compatibilistic Calvinists have redefined “free will” to mean “acting in accordance with one’s desire,” but it should be noted that those desires on Calvinism are determined by Divine decree, which are factors beyond the agent’s control (i.e. a fallen man cannot desire to accept the gospel appeal due to an inborn nature inherited from Adam, so he rejects Christ because that’s “his desire” and since it’s his desire it is “compatibilistically free” not “libertarianly free.”) If most people understood this is what Calvinists mean by “free will,” would they agree this is a myth?”

    My Response : Calvinism affirms that : “Free will of man means acting in accordance with one’s desire” – This is the correct way how I explain this: There are 2 things to consider and accept as it is:

    1. Most of the time, God brings about His eternal decree by using free actions of His creatures. God does not compel anyone to act sinfully contrary to their own desires. The presence of sin in the world and among Christian believers attests to this fact. Even the non-Calvinist residents here cannot deny that they still commit sins and does not perfectly and consistently follows God’s commands.

    2. It is also a fact in Scriptures that God has the capability (as the only One who possess absolute Freedom over man’s freedom) to override man’s freedom in order to do the following:

    a. Offer irresistible grace to the hard headed, unbelieving Israelites
    b. Prune the branches attached to the True Vine without asking permission from them
    c. inflict discipline by the time His children abuses the use of their freedom in sinning. God can do this thing without asking permission from the believers.
    d. Revive (regenerate) the “dead man” without asking permission because he is spiritually dead, morally incapable to reach out to God in his own accord. Just like the patient rushed to the hospital being inflated with air in order to survive.

    Because of the two (2) truths in Scripture presented in my response above, the Calvinists are accused of “indeterminism” ; “wearing masks” and “double speak”. What we need is to accept both facts in scripture as it is.

    1. jtleosala
      Calvinism affirms that : “Free will of man means acting in accordance with one’s desire” – This is the correct way how I explain this: …etc

      br.d
      This is a good example of the dishonest language of half-truth.
      In Calvinism – Calvin’s god RENDERS-CERTAIN every neurological impulse man will ever have.
      Obviously – Calvin’s god RENDERS-CERTAIN every desire man will ever have.

      Even the Calvinist doesn’t want THAT KIND of free will
      Why does he think anyone else will buy it! :-]

      jtleosala
      Most of the time, God brings about His eternal decree by using free actions of His creatures.

      br.d
      More dishonest language of half-truth.
      In Theological Determinism the creature is **ONLY** free do be/do what Calvin’s god RENDERS-CERTAIN the creature be/do.
      Nothing more – nothing less.
      A Calvinist who asserts a freedom beyond what is RENDERED-CERTAIN to exist – is deceiving you.
      The Calvinist is simply not honest enough to acknowledge this.

      jtleosala
      God does not compel anyone to act sinfully contrary to their own desires

      br.d
      Already addressed above.

      jtleosala
      Even the non-Calvinist residents here cannot deny that they still commit sins and does not perfectly and consistently follows God’s commands.

      br.d
      Right – if any man says he is without sin – he deceives himself and the truth is not in him.

      jtleosala
      It is also a fact in Scriptures that God has the capability (as the only One who possess absolute Freedom over man’s freedom) to override man’s freedom in order to do the following: – etc

      br.d
      We do not conflate Calvinism with scripture – the general narrative of which affirms IN-determinism

      jtleosala
      Because of the two (2) truths in Scripture presented in my response above, the Calvinists are accused of “indeterminism” ; “wearing masks” and “double speak”. What we need is to accept both facts in scripture as it is.

      br.d
      Double-speak – from wikipedia:
      Doublespeak is language that deliberately obscures, disguises, distorts, or reverses the meaning of words. Doublespeak may take the form of euphemisms in which case it is primarily meant to make dark truths sound more palatable. It may also refer to intentional ambiguity in language or to actual INVERSIONS of meaning. In such cases, doublespeak disguises the nature of the truth.

      William Lane Craig – Four Views on Divine Providence:

      Classical Reformed Calvinists – such as François Turretin – advised to hold these two truths in tension without allowing either one to cancel out the other – calling it a mystery.

      However by affirming Universal Divine Causal Determinism and an compatibilistic view of freedom, he [the Calvinist] ABOLISHES THE MYSTERY.

      Understanding how determinism and a compatiblistic view of freedom can be mutually connected is not difficult. ULTIMATELY, THERE IS NO CONTINGENCY IN THE WORLD AND EVERYTHING WE THINK AND DO IS CAUSALLY DETERMINED BY GOD.

      The problem is that such an interpretation of scripture is lopsided – it denies what scripture repeatedly and variously affirms: that human beings ARE NOT totally determined by God.

      Consider Paul’s promise in 1 Corinthians 10:13 “God is faithful that he will not let you be tempted beyond your strength but will provide a way of escape”.

      In determinism it logically follows – if it comes to pass that the believer sins, he was causally determined to do so – AND AS SUCH IS UNABLE TO DO OTHERWISE. There is no way of escape here. And this denies the very promise given by scripture.

      Universal divine causal determinism cannot, as the classical reformed divines cited – do justice to the full data of scripture and that is why the reformed view holds that reconciliation of these texts is inscrutable.

      Ultimately the Calvinist view simply does not provide a coherent interpretation of scripture.
      When one’s interpretation of scripture brings one into such a dead-end, its time to ask whether one’s interpretation is in error.

      1. DG writes : “Just because I might not love a stranger like I love my daughter cannot be compared to the “secret decree” of Calvinism. Which says that God only loves some from before they were born for secret reasons. The rest for the same secret reason are born into the world unloved by God from before they were born according to Calvinism.”

        My Response : It shows from your answer that you cannot really afford to offer love to your neighbor the same amount of love as what you give to yourself. You’re kidding me… it is a foolish thing to claim that you love the false prophets, false teachers, witchcrafts, etc. This means that you have not complied the command to love your neighbor as you love yourself.. It is just a myth. You can include this to your list as your Myth # 14 and call it as your “decoy love to your neighbor”. Your mode of enventing “Myth” in an attempt to ruin us just goes back to you.

        At least when I say “God does not love all people”, I really mean it and can be proven in scriptures.

        ‭‭

      2. DG writes : “Just because I might not love a stranger like I love my daughter cannot be compared to the “secret decree” of Calvinism. Which says that God only loves some from before they were born for secret reasons. The rest for the same secret reason are born into the world unloved by God from before they were born according to Calvinism.”

        jtleosala
        It shows from your answer that you cannot really afford to offer love to your neighbor

        br.d
        I don’t know why you posted this to me – but I’ve already addressed this argument.

        See my response to this here:
        https://soteriology101.com/2018/11/14/a-response-to-5-myths-about-calvinism/#comment-30408

  10. Br.D. writes : “Ultimately the Calvinist view simply does not provide a coherent interpretation of scripture.
    When one’s interpretation of scripture brings one into such a dead-end, its time to ask whether one’s interpretation is in error.”

    My response : NO, that’s not true at all. You are implying in your statement that you alone has the correct interpretation of Scriptures and mine is wrong. My goodness I will never give up mine.

    1. Br.D. quotes William Lane Craig – Four Views on Divine Providence
      “Ultimately the Calvinist view simply does not provide a coherent interpretation of scripture.
      When one’s interpretation of scripture brings one into such a dead-end, its time to ask whether one’s interpretation is in error.”

      jtleosala
      NO, that’s not true at all. You are implying in your statement that you alone has the correct interpretation of Scriptures and mine is wrong. My goodness I will never give up mine.

      br.d
      Good – your actually focusing on “true” vs “false”
      That is a step in the right direction.

      Dr. Craig is not arguing his interpretation is right and the Calvinist’s is wrong. That is a misconception. Dr. Craig is responding to the way Calvinism HANDLES scripture in the light of sound reasoning. There are many interpretations of scripture in the world. Should every interpreter assume his interpretation is infallible? Is it not possible for an interpretation to be in error? What if a person’s interpretation is irrational?

      Dr. Craig is saying – when an interpretation meets logical dead-ends its time to face the fact that the interpreter is human.
      And there are interpretations that are in error.

      See this post:

      THE “BIBLE BASED” THEOLOGIAN AND THE BUTCH HAIRCUT
      https://soteriology101.com/2018/08/23/response-to-tom-ascol-of-the-founders-ministry/#comment-30329

      1. One more point on interpretation.

        In Matthew 6 Jesus asks a rhetorical question about whether there is darkness within people.
        He acknowledges there is – so that is not his concluding question.
        His final question is: How great is that darkness?

        Calvin cannot assert he is without sin.
        Therefore his interpretation of scripture is not without sin.
        Therefore there is darkness in his interpretation.

        Jesus’ question then follows: “How great is that darkness”.

        How does one ascertain the error within one’s interpretation – with more of the same interpretation?
        Engineers have a name for this – its called “accumulated error”.
        In street language its called “chasing one’s own tail”.

        When you see someone chasing their own tail – it serves as a sign – something is wrong with that one’s thinking.

        Likewise when we see Calvinists rejecting TRUTH statements about Calvinism AS-IF they were false – when the Calvinist knows they are true – this serves as a sign of TRUTH EVASION.

        Jesus does not teach truth evasion – Calvinists learn this from some other teacher.

  11. Dr. Flowers writes, “They affirm what is called “Total Inability,” which means that fallen people cannot respond positively even to God’s own inspired appeals to be reconciled from the fall. I don’t find this Calvinistic doctrine taught within the scriptures, do you?”

    How is one to understand John 6, where Jesus taught, “No one can come to Me,…” Paul, in Romans 8, writes, “…the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so;…” Calvinists take these verses plus others and conclude that fallen people have no ability to accept salvation unless and until God provides them the ability to do so. Arminians agreed on this point and proposed prevenient grace as necessary before a person could accept salvation.

    Dr. Flowers rejects both the Calvinist and Arminian views on Total Depravity and the need for grace to enable a person to be saved. His is a minority position and lacks a Scriptural basis unless one only uses certain Scriptures while ignoring all Scriptures.

    1. Rhutchin writes,

      “Dr. Flowers rejects both the Calvinist and Arminian views on Total Depravity and the need for grace to enable a person to be saved. His is a minority position and lacks a Scriptural basis unless one only uses certain Scriptures while ignoring all Scriptures”

      My reply – Reader beware. Dr flower’s view is not a minority but a majority view. Most Christians affirm that the grace needed to be saved is found in the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ only. This position has overwhelming scriptural evidence. Most Christians affirm that is all that is needed.

      The Calvinist “Grace” is a “secret selection” before a person is born whereby they were picked out of multitudes to be saved by a “secret counsel” decree, leaving the rest not picked by default of the secret decree before anyone was born.

      Let the reader decide which is more biblical.

      1. DG,
        I believe you are correct on two accounts.

        It is the majority view.

        The cross and the Word are enough. I have proposed many times on these pages that Calvinists make up some kind of barricade. This barricade insists that the cross is not enough. The Word is not enough. They insist it takes more.

      2. Its not a matter of seeking majority votes in order to access Salvation, win the debate and to convince the readers. Jesus Christ have said that “Few people enters the narrow gate and few finds it” — this means that the saved people who will reside in heaven are always in the minority while the rest of the majority are damned to perish.

        In my opinion, most christians including Pentecostals, Trad. SB, and Charismatics even the professing Roman Catholics also claim the doctrine of grace in Salvation, but beware… it’s the Pelagian or Semi-Pelagian view or Synergism view.

        Maybe, DG can add this to list of Myths # 15 and call it as your : “Decoy Grace”

      3. JTL writes,

        “Maybe, DG can add this to list of Myths # 15 and call it as your : “Decoy Grace””

        My reply – the grace that JTL has just called a “Decoy Grace” is the grace that I referred to as being the death burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

        I think it is sad that JTL thinks that the death burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is not true grace but only a “Decoy Grace”.

        I will add it to the Myths of Calvinism. Here we go –

        Myth #15:
        Calvinism doesn’t play down the grace of God. They uphold it! They even call it ‘The Doctrines of Grace”. But it’s not the grace of God in the death burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ because thats just a decoy grace.

      4. It is your “Decoy Grace” Myth # 15 , = because there are some insertions and additions to the grace of God, i.e: good works, man’s self-righteousness, man’s self-efforts in accessing Salvation; Man has to maintain Salvation otherwise it will be lost, etc.” Mine is the real one (Monergism)

        In my previous engagement with FOH, He said that “Salvation is conditional” – There is a tricky insertion of Man’s self efforts in order to access Salvation.

        The truth is that GRACE of God is unconditional given by God to Sinners without any qualifications.

        Your side denies Monergism which I embrace (Salvation is the total work of God, Man has no whatsoever share in it) You prefer and embrace Synergism that is why it becomes a “Decoy Grace”

      5. JTL writes,
        “You prefer and embrace Synergism that is why it becomes a “Decoy Grace””

        My reply – Calvinists like JTL here will try and put “ism’s” on you for believing in the death burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ as the only way of salvation.

        What JTL means when he says – quote – “The truth is that GRACE of God is unconditional given by God to Sinners without any qualifications”. He means the “grace” of the unconditional secret selection that picked you out to be a believer before you were born by a secret counsel. That’s the grace he is talking about.

      6. What JTL means when he says – quote – “The truth is that GRACE of God is unconditional given by God to Sinners without any qualifications”. He means the “grace” of the unconditional secret selection that picked you out to be a believer before you were born by a secret counsel. That’s the grace he is talking about.

        br.d
        That is correct
        But what goes along with that – which the Calvinist seeks to evade – is that in this scheme ALL SIN AND ALL EVIL are UNCONDITIONAL and IRRESISTIBLE also.

      7. jtleosala
        Your side denies Monergism which I embrace (Salvation is the total work of God, Man has no whatsoever share in it) You prefer and embrace Synergism that is why it becomes a “Decoy Grace”

        br.d
        Monergism = Mono-Agency.
        In this scheme the THEOS is the ONLY Agent.
        In Theological Determinism Synergism is rejected.

        Therefore all sin and all evil occur Monogistically.

      8. DG Writes : “Most Calvinists will argue from whatever position fits their argument for the purpose of persuading a person that salvation is by a “secret decree” before anyone was born, and that this is primarily how one is saved, followed by the second evidence which “seems” to be believing in Jesus Christ. But the true reality in the Calvinist system is the only reason that a person believes in Jesus Christ is because they were saved by a “secret decree” before they were born.”

        My Response : The above quote of DG is supported by the following Scripture passages, but he denies and disregard all of these passages :

        It is not actually a secret anymore because it has been revealed already in Scriptures. It is irrelevant to keep on mentioning that term “secret decree”

        1. 2 Thess. 2:13 But we are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth.

        This verse reveals that Salvation has been set out already before a person elect is born on this earth., but DG denies this !

        2. 2 Tim. 1:9 Who 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 given to us in Christ Jesus before time began.

        When did God saved us ? = Salvation has been assigned to us (elect) already by God before time began., but DG denies this !

        3. Rev. 13:8 All who dwell on the earth will worship Him, whose names have not been written in the book of life of the Lamb slain before the foundation of the world.

        When did God wrote the names in the Book of Life and at the same time decided NOT TO INCLUDE the names of those vessels created for destruction? = The answer is before the foundation of the world., But DG denies this.
        Therefore, no more names are added in that Book of Life at present. It has been done already by God before time., but DG still will keep on insisting additional Names of those “decoys” including the false prophets, witchcraft, magicians of Pharaoh, false teachers, false deities, The Pope, God haters, Cults, etc = All of them Christ offered His life for them yet all of them will still perish !… Wow … My goodness !

        4. Rev. 17:8 “… And those who dwell on the earth will marvel, whose names are not written in the book of Life from the foundation of the world…”

        The verse tells us that there were Names of people who were not included, not written before the foundation of the world. But the non-Calvinist side denies this and becomes outrageous to the Calvinists because they keep on insisting that God loves all people, but are still dammed to hell. What kind of love is this that they preach to people? very misleading and a false claim and a Myth. They can call it as their Myth # 16 which is entitled : “Decoy Salvation for the Non-Elect”

      9. jtleosala
        It is irrelevant to keep on mentioning that term “secret decree”

        br.d
        How easy it is for a Calvinist to betray their name-sake.
        The “secret decree” and the “secret counsel” are John Calvin’s favorite terms :-]

      10. JTL writes,
        “They can call it as their Myth # 16 which is entitled : “Decoy Salvation for the Non-Elect”

        Here we go Myth #16.

        Myth #16: If you are not a Calvinist you agree with: – quote JTL “but DG still will keep on insisting additional Names of those “decoys” including the false prophets, witchcraft, magicians of Pharaoh, false teachers, false deities, The Pope, God haters, Cults, etc = All of them Christ offered His life for them yet all of them will still perish !… Wow … My goodness!”

        When I never even mentioned any of these but only that salvation is by the death burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

        I guess thats what you do when you haven’t got a logical reply. You just tag a person with a bunch of heretics and hope people won’t notice you doing it.

      11. jtleosala
        It [salvation] is not actually a secret anymore because it has been revealed already in Scriptures. It is irrelevant to keep on mentioning that term “secret decree”

        br.d
        In Calvinism this is FALSE
        rhutchin would say this Calvinist must have missed his indoctrination class on THE TWO WILLS OF CALVIN’S god

        John Calvin teaches there is an EXPRESSED WILL and a SECRET WILL of Calvin’s god.

        When Calvin’s god communicated to Adam to NOT eat the fruit – he was communicating his EXPRESSED WILL – not his SECRET WILL.
        His SECRET WILL was the opposite.

        Calvin’s god SECRETLY WILLED Adam’s disobedience INFALLIBLY come to pass.

        So for the Calvinist – scripture CANNOT represent Calvin’s god’s SECRET WILL – simply because that WILL is SECRET.
        Therefore all scripture which assure the Calvinist of salvation are ONLY expressions of Calvin’s god’s EXPRESSED WILL.

        Every Calvinist knows the SECRET WILL of Calvin’s god for him may be for a lake of fire.
        And he has no way of knowing if he is elect or not because election is according SECRET COUNSEL of Calvin’s god.

        Any Calvinist who tells you otherwise has manufactured a hybrid form of Calvin’s doctrine

      12. br.d writes, “John Calvin teaches there is an EXPRESSED WILL and a SECRET WILL of Calvin’s god.”

        God has expressed His will through the Scriptures that were recorded so that we could know God’s will (this His expressed will). However, the Scriptures do not reveal the entirely of God’s will, so there are some things that God has kept hidden from us (this His secret will). I don’t see why this is an issue for anyone.

      13. br.d
        “John Calvin teaches there is an EXPRESSED WILL and a SECRET WILL of Calvin’s god.”

        rhutchin
        1) God has expressed His will through the Scriptures…… (this His expressed will).
        2) the Scriptures do not reveal the entirely of God’s will
        3) there are some things that God has kept hidden from us (this His secret will).

        I don’t see why this is an issue for anyone.

        br.d
        Thank you for affirming my TRUTH STATEMENT about Calvin’s doctrine.

        John Calvin:
        -quote:
        “There is a LARGE MIXTURE within [Calvin’s] church who have nothing of Christ but the name and appearance.
        He holds out salvation to these as a savor of greater condemnation
        He will eventually strike them with greater blindness.

        Who are THESE Calvinists to whom Calvin is referring?
        That Calvin stipulates is a SECRET.

        Therefore per your statements 2-3 above – the disposition of your eternal fate is a SECRET
        And secrets are not expressed in scripture.

        And – as you’ve stated – you don’t have an issue with that.
        But that is not because you came to a conclusion through rational reasoning.

        Since your every neurological impulse was RENDERED-CERTAIN before you were born.
        You don’t have an issue with it simply because you were RENDERED-CERTAIN not to.

        I understand all that comes with Calvin’s doctrine.

        Obviously Calvin’s god is not obligated to RENDER-CERTAIN you have TRUTH thoughts.
        Since what you have an issue with is outside your control – your thinking it does can be entertaining for others to watch. :-]

      14. br.d writes, “Thank you for affirming my TRUTH STATEMENT about Calvin’s doctrine.”

        Thank you for not contesting Calvin’s doctrine.

      15. br.d writes, “Thank you for affirming my TRUTH STATEMENT about Calvin’s doctrine.”

        rhutchin
        Thank you for not contesting Calvin’s doctrine.

        br.d
        An adult mind does not equate a TRUTH STATEMENT about X with EVERYTHING about X. :-]

      16. br.d writes this quote below :

        “Monergism = Mono-Agency.
        In this scheme the THEOS is the ONLY Agent.
        In Theological Determinism Synergism is rejected.”

        “Therefore all sin and all evil occur Monogistically.”

        My response : Are you insinuating God as the author of Sin?. I deny this thing. God can never be the author of Sin.

        If you will say God is the author of Sin, then that’s the end of everything for you. Christ is disqualified as your Savior because it will come out that Christ is also a fellow sinner like you and me, not Holy.

      17. I had to like this one because it gave me a laugh 😂 The blatant purposeful twisting of BR.d’s words to say something else is amazing. Brd was not saying that God is the author of sin!

      18. Damon
        I had to like this one because it gave me a laugh 😂 The blatant purposeful twisting of BR.d’s words to say something else is amazing. Brd was not saying that God is the author of sin!

        br.d
        That’s correct – John Calvin says Calvin’s god is the author of sin.

        Calvinists have a love-hate relationship with their own doctrine.

        Does anyone need to wonder why?

        Makes you want to run right out and sign up for Calvinism right now doesn’t it!

        I thinking poking myself in the eye with a stick would be easier. :-]

      19. br.d

        “Monergism = Mono-Agency.
        In this scheme the THEOS is the ONLY Agent.
        In Theological Determinism Synergism is rejected.”

        “Therefore all sin and all evil occur Monogistically.”

        jtleosala
        Are you insinuating God as the author of Sin?. I deny this thing. God can never be the author of Sin.

        br.d
        This Calvinist must have missed a number of indoctrination sessions.

        I made a TRUTH STATEMENT about Calvin’s Monergism doctrine.
        Perhaps this Calvinist will not OWN IT is because he its told revealing it will impact RECRUITMENT efforts.

        Calvinist Viscent Cheung has no problem declaring Calvin’s god is the author of sin – and neither did John Calvin.

        John Calvin:
        -quote:
        But it is quite frivolous refuge to say that God otiosely permits them, when Scripture shows Him not only WILLING but the AUTHOR of them.” (Concerning the Eternal Predestination of God, p.176)

        JT your testimony of Calvin’s doctrine is UN-trustworthy.

      20. DAMON GRIBBLE
        NOVEMBER 14, 2018 AT 9:55 PM
        JTL asks
        “Honestly, Does the non-Calvinist residents here affirm that they also love the false prophets, false teachers, the devil and his minions?”

        My reply – False teachers and prophets – Yes, they are part of the world that Jesus loved in John 3:16. It’s not God’s fault that they do not love Him.
        ————————————————————————————-
        Below is my reply to DG’s post above:

        DG, you have just affirm to the above post of yours which I quote here. It’s clear that you really love according to you the : false prophets, false teachers” So… you must be working like a horse to telling them that God loves them and promise them with eternal life. You may even include the Pope of the RC; the magicians and witchcraft of our days, the Leaders of the Cults, etc. then promise them with eternal life.

      21. JTL writes,

        ” You may even include the Pope of the RC; the magicians and witchcraft of our days, the Leaders of the Cults, etc. then promise them with eternal life.”

        My reply – Yep! Christ died for all these and loved everyone of them and wants all to repent, turn from their ways and believe the gospel and be saved from eternal damnation. That’s the heart of God.

      22. Damon

        JTL writes,
        ” You may even include the Pope of the RC; the magicians and witchcraft of our days, the Leaders of the Cults, etc. then promise them with eternal life.”

        My reply – Yep! Christ died for all these and loved everyone of them and wants all to repent, turn from their ways and believe the gospel and be saved from eternal damnation. That’s the heart of God.

        br.d
        And the Pharisee said “I thank you god I am not like those “magicians”, “witches” and “Popes of the RC”

        The really mentally deranged aspect of this is that JTL forgets Calvin’s god may have designed him specifically for the lake of fire.

        It might be a good idea for him to at least be friendly with those people he might spend eternity with. :-]

      23. DG writes, “Yep! Christ died for all these and loved everyone of them and wants all to repent, turn from their ways and believe the gospel and be saved from eternal damnation. That’s the heart of God.”

        Christ said, “Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide, and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter by it. For the gate is small, and the way is narrow that leads to life, and few are those who find it.”

        It is true that “God so loved the world…” and it is true that God will not save everyone, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’”

        No matter how you slice it, not everyone will enter the kingdom of heaven. Any person who desires to enter the kingdom of heaven may do so. Of those who refuse to enter the kingdom of heaven, God can save whom He chooses.

      24. rhutchin
        Any person who desires to enter the kingdom of heaven may do so. Of those who refuse to enter the kingdom of heaven, God can save whom He chooses.

        br.d
        Thanks rhutchin – this is a good example of the dishonest language of half-truth

        In Calvinism every person’s every neurological impulse is RENDERED-CERTAIN before they were born.
        So quite naturally every DESIRE is also.
        Those who refuse to enter – do so PRIMARILY because that was RENDERED-CERTAIN before they were born.

        John Calvin:
        – quote
        “The will of god is the PRIMARY CAUSE of all things which come to pass”

        Obviously that makes Calvinism’s dishonest language of half-truths RENDERED-CERTAIN also.

        Doesn’t that make a person just want to run right out now and join up! :-]

      25. br.d writes, “Those who refuse to enter – do so PRIMARILY because that was RENDERED-CERTAIN before they were born.”

        In other words, no one is born with an inherent desire to enter the kingdom of heaven. This affirms John 6, where Christ said, “No one can come to me…” So, what is the issue?

      26. br.d
        “Those who refuse to enter – do so PRIMARILY because that was RENDERED-CERTAIN before they were born.”

        rhutchin
        In other words, no one is born with an inherent desire to enter the kingdom of heaven. This affirms John 6, where Christ said, “No one can come to me…” So, what is the issue?

        br.d
        Thank you rhutchin – for showing us Calvinism is all about shape-shifting words
        In Calvinism everyone is born with whatever Calvin’s god RENDERED-CERTAIN they be born with.

        You must have missed that class in Calvinism school
        Don’t you remember? – you don’t have an issue with that because you were RENDERED-CERTAIN not to.

        But like I’ve said…
        The fact that you think you have any control of what you have an issue with – I find pretty fun to watch. :-]

      27. br.d writes, “In Calvinism everyone is born with whatever Calvin’s god RENDERED-CERTAIN they be born with.”

        Or in this case, it is what they are born without – faith. Thank you for not contesting that point nor arguing against John 6.

      28. br.d
        “IN CALVINISM everyone is born with whatever Calvin’s god RENDERED-CERTAIN they be born with.”

        rhutchin
        Or in this case, it is what they are born without – faith. Thank you for not contesting that point nor arguing against John 6.

        br.d
        Good – you got at least part of my intent correct.
        However, I was careful in statement to say: “IN CALVINISM”

        Also IN CALVINISM everyone who is NOT elect is (from the foundation of the world) DESIGNED for the lake of fire.

        However on John 6 – in my mind its simply an act of futility to conflate scripture with Calvinism since they will always end up contradicting themselves – chasing their own tails. I’d rather sit back and watch. :-]

      29. br.d “However on John 6 – I don’t bother to conflate scripture with Calvinism

        rhutchin
        Again, thank you, for not contesting John 6 again.

        br.d
        No problemo – super easy – but I appreciate the “thank you”

      30. jtleosala
        DG, you have just affirm to the above post of yours which I quote here. It’s clear that you really love according to you the : false prophets, false teachers”

        br.d
        Father forgive them for they know now what they do
        Be ye holy as your heavenly father is holy

        You, then, who teach others, do you not teach yourself?
        You who preach against stealing, do you steal?

        If you do not to love those people – you can take that up with Jesus.

        Oh but I forgot – you do not love those people because Calvin’s god RENDERED-CERTAIN your every neurological impulse.
        And you don’t have any say in what is RENDERED-CERTAIN

        Not to worry!
        Que Sera, Sera (Whatever Will Be, Will Be)

      31. DG asks a question : But how does that prove the “secret decree” that saved only some and not the rest before they are born? It just doesn’t!
        ————– 000 —————
        DG, I have posted already the verses as my answer to your question above. The only problem is that you disregard the truths revealed from those verses.

      32. jtleosala
        DG, I have posted already the verses as my answer to your question above. The only problem is that you disregard the truths revealed from those verses.

        br.d
        Those verses only represent Calvin’s god’s EXPRESSED WILL – not his SECRET WILL.

        Calvin’s god’s SECRET WILL – he designs some Calvinists as vessels of wrath – for the lake of fire.
        Oh well – that’s just the way it is!

        But just remember what John Piper says about that:
        The Calvinist can always rest assured Calvin’s god will do what is right.

        I guess that’s considered a comfort for those Calvinists who are designed for the lake of fire. :-]

      33. DG Writes : “My reply – The Calvinist will say this as if the non-Calvinist doesn’t believe this. Of course the freedom to believe God or reject God comes from God.”

        My Response : I have to ask you concerning your response above when you say : ” Of course the freedom to believe God or reject God comes from God”. (You sound now like a Calvinist… Wow !)

        1. Are you embracing now Determinism and Predestination? What is your answer? Yes ____ No _____ undecided yet _____
        2. Are you embracing now the doctrine of Total Depravity?, and Limited Atonement? What is your answer? Yes _____ No ____ or cannot decide yet as of this time? _____

      34. JTL writes,

        “I have to ask you concerning your response above when you say : ” Of course the freedom to believe God or reject God comes from God”. (You sound now like a Calvinist… Wow !)

        My response – The fact that the freedom to be able to believe God or reject God, comes from God; is not Calvinism.
        Actually Calvinism says you cannot believe or reject God at all. You were either in or out before you were born according to Calvinism. Whether you believe or reject just confirms whatever took place at the unchangeable “secret decree”.

        Calvinists like to sugar coat the inevitable consequence of the “secret decree” as if man is somehow responsible of the outcome. But you were either saved or unsaved before you were born by the “secret decree” and that’s the way it’s going to be for eternity according to Calvinism.

        The doctrine I embrace is the death burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. I reject any other doctrine in regard to salvation including – Total Insanity, Unconditional Absurdity, Limited Intelligence, Irresistible Double Speak, and Split Personality of the Saints.

      35. Damon
        The doctrine I embrace is the death burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

        I reject any other doctrine in regard to salvation including
        – Total Insanity
        – Unconditional Absurdity
        – Limited Intelligence
        – Irresistible Double Speak
        and
        – Split Personality of the Saints.

        br.d
        WONDERFUL LIST!!

        This is the MOST HONEST form of the TULIP I have seen yet! :-]

      36. DG
        The Calvinist will say this as if the non-Calvinist doesn’t believe this. Of course the freedom to believe God or reject God comes from God.”

        jtleosala
        Of course the freedom to believe God or reject God comes from God”. (You sound now like a Calvinist… Wow !)

        br.d
        FALSE
        Standard Non-Calvinist doctrine stipulates the God of scripture grants salvation as a GIFT.
        A gift which can be INDETERMINISTICALLY accepted or rejected by man

        Calvinism rejects INDETERMINISM
        That is – when they are not speaking double-speak. :-]

        Case in point – Calvinism’s doctrine of Monergism.

        jtleosala
        1. Are you embracing now Determinism and Predestination? What is your answer? Yes ____ No _____ undecided yet _____
        2. Are you embracing now the doctrine of Total Depravity?, and Limited Atonement? What is your answer? Yes _____ No ____ or cannot decide yet as of this time? _____

        br.d
        Calvinism is babel – come out of it and be not partaker of its plagues.

      37. jtleosala
        Its not a matter of seeking majority votes in order to access Salvation, win the debate and to convince the readers. Jesus Christ have said that “Few people enters the narrow gate and few finds it” — this means that the saved people who will reside in heaven are always in the minority while the rest of the majority are damned to perish.

        br.d
        This is called DISTANCING LANGUAGE – designed to camouflage divine evil.

        Per his own doctrine – lets decode this language and see what the Calvinist is REALLY saying:

        1) Calvin’s god has rigged the card table of life so that a few people are rendered-certain to win
        2) The majority are rendered-certain to lose.
        3) Losing means the lake of fire.
        3) In other words the vast majority of the human race was specifically designed by Calvin’s god expressly for the lake of fire.
        4) The minority however are designed by Calvin’s god for eternal life.

    2. Dr. Flowers writes, “They affirm what is called “Total Inability,” which means that fallen people cannot respond positively even to God’s own inspired appeals to be reconciled from the fall. I don’t find this Calvinistic doctrine taught within the scriptures, do you?”

      rhutchin
      How is one to understand John 6…..etc

      br.d
      Dr. Flowers language – he used the term INSPIRED APPEALS.
      The question would then be what is inferred by that term.

      If we apply a little logic to it – it should be obvious – that all divine activities are “INSPIRED” – that should go without question.
      So there must be something Dr. Flowers has in mind by INSPIRED APPEALS.

      If for example he means that Holy Spirit inspiration is extended to the recipient with the appeal – then I think Calvinists would be hard put to reject that.

      1. Hi, Br.D. “the neurological impulse man”. I repost here what you have written above:

        “br.d”
        “FALSE”
        “Standard Non-Calvinist doctrine stipulates the God of scripture grants salvation as a GIFT.”
        “A gift which can be INDETERMINISTICALLY accepted or rejected by man”
        ———————–
        Here is my Reaction to that : But you have forgotten the letter (I) in the TULIP. God may opt to do it among the hard headed and unbelieving Israelites. If in case, the elect does’nt resist, there is no need to Irresistibly offer the gift.

      2. br.d
        “FALSE”
        “Standard Non-Calvinist doctrine stipulates the God of scripture grants salvation as a GIFT.”
        “A gift which can be INDETERMINISTICALLY accepted or rejected by man”

        jtleosala
        But you have forgotten the letter (I) in the TULIP.

        br.d
        The letter (i) in the Tulip – oh yea that stands for Calvin’s god makes sin IRRESISTIBLE :-]

        jtleosala
        God may opt to DO IT among the hard headed and unbelieving Israelites.

        br.d
        You really need to consider being more precise in your statements – the wording is often to ambiguous for this type of dialog.
        This is not a criticism – just a friendly observation that can only be of help to you.

        But I will guess what you mean by the words DO IT.
        What you mean is God may opt to offer the GIFT of salvation to certain people based upon an aspect of those people

        Calvin’s god does not elect or not elect based upon aspects of the creature (hard headed etc).
        Calvin’s god’s decision to elect is – as Calvin states “within himself according to the secret counsel of his will”
        So hard headed has nothing to do with Calvin’s god’s decision.

        However, it is obvious Calvin’s god DOES “opt out” of offering salvation to people he designs as vessels of wrath.
        This is obviously embraced by Calvinism – but rejected by the preponderance of Christ honoring Christianity.

        jtleosala
        If in case, the elect does’nt resist, there is no need to Irresistibly offer the gift.

        br.d
        Here you have a well constructed logical statement – very good!
        It would really be wonderful of all Calvinist statements were this rational.

        But of course (unless you don’t believe Calvin’s doctrine.) you already know that Calvin’s god RENDERS-CERTAIN every neurological impulse.
        So if they resist – it is because they were RENDERED-CERTAIN to resist.
        If they don’t resist – it is because they were RENDERED-CERTAIN not to resist.
        That was determined by Calvin’s god before they were born – and had no say in the matter.

  12. Dr. Flowers writes, “Compatibilistic Calvinists have redefined “free will” to mean “acting in accordance with one’s desire,” but it should be noted that those desires on Calvinism are determined by Divine decree, which are factors beyond the agent’s control…”

    Far too simplistic. Only God has true free will as God is omniscient. Even a person with LFW but without knowledge of the gospel has no ability to be saved (technically, such people have the ability to be saved but no reason to seek salvation). Even a person with LFW and knowledge of the gospel but no faith has no ability to be saved (technically, such people have the ability to be saved but no desire to seek salvation). This Paul argues in Romans 10, “How then shall they call upon Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?”

    Give a person all the LFW you want and no desire for salvation, and that person will never be saved.

    1. Dr. Flowers writes, “Compatibilistic Calvinists have redefined “free will” to mean “acting in accordance with one’s desire,” but it should be noted that those desires on Calvinism are determined by Divine decree, which are factors beyond the agent’s control…”

      rhutchin
      Far too simplistic. Only God has true free will as God is omniscient.

      br.d
      AS-IF omniscience makes any difference on whether one has free will or not.

      rhutchin – you are so self-contradicting on the topic of free will – you appear to be in a full fledged tennis match against yourself on the subject.

      Your posts on free will remind me of a pin-ball bouncing around in a pin-ball machine.
      Not even going to bother to respond rationally to these.

  13. Rhutchin writes,

    “Give a person all the LFW (Libertarian Free Will) you want and no desire for salvation, and that person will never be saved.”

    My reply – This is a good example of how irrational Calvinism is. You can see the opposing positions that they wrestle with in this one short statement. This is where all the double speak comes from.

    They can say that God gives LFW and also gives no desire for salvation. Both given by God. So, they can say in one breath man has libertarian free will because God gave it to him, and then in the next breath say that God gave all of the non-elect no desire to be saved.

    Most Calvinists will argue from whatever position fits their argument for the purpose of persuading a person that salvation is by a “secret decree” before anyone was born, and that this is primarily how one is saved, followed by the second evidence which “seems” to be believing in Jesus Christ. But the true reality in the Calvinist system is the only reason that a person believes in Jesus Christ is because they were saved by a “secret decree” before they were born.

    In the Calvinist system the gospel is secondary in the process of salvation. In the Calvinist system you were individually placed in Christ before you were born. The “belief” that one has within the Calvinist system is just a mere mechanism that is given to the ones that were saved by the “secret decree”.

    1. Nice analysis Damon!

      I noticed also in rhutchin last post how he explicitly links knowledge to salvation.

      Gnostics believed that people were “elected” to salvation and the process involved the divine dissemination of knowledge.
      The Greek word for knowledge: “Gnostikioi”

      Hence they were called Gnostics.

      1. BR.D,

        That’s one of the things I noticed when I was in a stealth Calvinist church for 8 years. The hierarchy, or those close to the hierarchy had this kind of wink wink thing going on. If the topic of “predestination” or “election” came up, they would kind of look at each other with the “wink wink will you get this one or will I” kind of attitude. It’s like they think that only they are mature enough to understand these “deeper truths” of knowledge, and they then have to decide whether to come out with it or continue in “special prudence and care” to win a convert.

        I remember I said to a pastor once that one of the other pastors is telling me that only some have been selected for salvation by a secret decree before anyone was born, leaving the rest born into the world non-elect by the same secret decree. I’ll always remember what he said, He said – “Ohhh, I wouldn’t say it like thaaaat”. I now understand what he meant. He agreed with my statement but wouldn’t say like it like that, and that is the heart of Calvinism in my opinion. Covering up, hiding “truth”, double speak, smoke and mirrors, abracadabra now you see it now you don’t.

        I like this quote from John MacArthur. It says it all.

        “That’s one of the reasons I know the Bible is written by God, because men would fix it. If I wrote a book that had those contradictions, Phil would edit them all out.” John MacArthur.

      2. Wow Damon – you ave gone through some fiery trials – I can see that church environment could get pretty nasty!
        I know from first hand what abuse of power looks like with ministry.

        Its awesome you caught that “Ohhh, I wouldn’t say it like thaaaat” from this Calvinist.
        How many times have I heard a Calvinist say just exactly that.

        They have to couch everything in euphemistic language – hiding determinism – and making it masquerade as In-determinism.

        You hit the bulls-eye totally!!! :-]

        And I like that MacArthur quote – how revealing!!
        This clearly shows he knows what a contradiction is – and he’s willing to live with and embrace them.
        That statement shows I higher degree of honesty than we will probably ever see from our Calvinist friends here at SOT101.
        When it comes to acknowledging contradictions they either play dumb – or embrace contradictions as “the authority of scripture”.

        Great quote!

    2. DG writes : “They can say that God gives LFW and also gives no desire for salvation. Both given by God. So, they can say in one breath man has libertarian free will because God gave it to him, and then in the next breath say that God gave all of the non-elect no desire to be saved.”

      My Response : It is not actually God who will give the LFW. It is your camp who will give it. You are just mis-representing Rutchin’s statement. I believe that God did not gave man an absolute Freedom because it is only God who possess it. If He gave freedom to man, it is still subject to God the giver because He can override it anytime He may wish to do so.

      1. JTL writes,

        “He gave freedom to man, it is still subject to God the giver because He can override it anytime He may wish to do so.”

        My reply – The Calvinist will say this as if the non-Calvinist doesn’t believe this. Of course the freedom to believe God or reject God comes from God.

        God can also override man’s freedom whenever He wants. And does so whenever He pleases. But how does that prove the “secret decree” that saved only some and not the rest before they are born? It just doesn’t!

      2. jtleosala
        If He [Calvin’s god] gave freedom to man, it is still subject to God the giver because He can override it anytime He may wish to do so.

        br.d
        Free will in Calvinism is AMORPHOUS – like a desert mirage.
        A Calvinists every neurological impulse WAS rendered-certain by Calvin’s god – millennia before the Calvinist was born.
        The Calvinist doesn’t have one ounce of control over his own brain – because every thought is predestined to infallibly come to pass.
        And the Calvinist has no SAY-SO in what thoughts Calvin’s god will MAKE him have – because they were FIXED before he was born.

        Here is the TRUTH in Calvinism:
        The Creature is free to be/do **ONLY** what Calvin’s god RENDERS-CERTAIN the creature be/do
        Nothing more – nothing less.
        Any Calvinist who asserts freedom beyond that is deceiving you.

        To understand Calvinism is simple.
        A Calvinist is a determinist – wearing the mask of IN-determinism – reciting double-speak talking points.

  14. The article by Dr. Greg Forester seems to affirm the old adage that one mis-truth requires yet another to ‘explain’ it.

    The unwillingness of Calvinists to admit they play a pea-and-shell game with their human-conceived systematic is based in either ignorance or dishonesty.

    br.d has done a superior job of holding a mirror to the faces of Calvin’s defenders, yet each one insists on saying, “That’s not me!” At first it’s comical, but then it is pitiable when one realizes that Calvinists actually believe what they espouse. The impression gained is that the system is far more sacrosanct than Scripture.

    Myth #17
    If one cannot grasp the scriptural basis of Calvinism, then one is not yet scripturally astute.

    Myth #18
    Calvinists do not engage in theological smuggery.

    1. Myth #19
      Everything that naive non-Calvinists accuse Calvinists of is only true for “hyper-Calvinists” which is not any of us.

      Myth #20
      Concepts such as “double-predestination” and “God ordains evil” are all found disgusting to newbie-Calvinists….. until they’re not.

      1. Two angels rounded up all of the Calvinists in the world into a tiny elementary school gymnasium in Buford, Wyoming.

        At one end of the gymnasium was an area roped-off with a sign which read “Hyper Calvinists stand here”

        The angel went out and made the announcement “If you’re a Hyper Calvinist go and stand over there”

        No one moved.

        Puzzled – the angel then pointed to another roped-off area in the room labeled LARGE MIXTURE OF HYPOCRITES

        Ok then – if your one of the LARGE MIXTURE of hypocrites which John Calvin spoke of – then stand over there.

        No one moved.

        More puzzled – the angel then pointed to another roped-off area labeled “ELECT”

        Ok them – if you belong to that group stand over there.

        Everyone moved
        But there the was only enough room for a few.

        The angel shook his head and said: “That’s all I need – another day of herding cats!” :-]

    2. Myth #21
      Calvinist adhere closely to the Word of God expect for the thousands of times it says, “I would have,” “I could have,” “I did not expect,” “If you had only…I would have,” “Since you have… I will now….” Those are all special verses where YHWH does not mean what He clearly say.

      1. FOH writes, ” Those are all special verses where YHWH does not mean what He clearly say.”

        No, the verses mean what they say. The problem comes when people extrapolate from these verses to argue that God is not omniscient or did not know what He was doing.

      2. FOH
        ” Those are all special verses where YHWH does not mean what He clearly say.”

        rhutchin
        No, the verses mean what they say. The problem comes when people extrapolate from these verses to argue that God is not omniscient or did not know what He was doing.

        br.d
        AHEM!
        Currently – its the Calvinist testimony here who (by logical implication) fails to show Calvin’s god is omniscient.

        Per the latest Calvinist testimonies:

        Calvin’s god can (at the foundation of the word) RENDER-CERTAIN X INFALLIBLY come to pass.
        And then X does NOT INFALLIBLY come to pass – but an ALTERNATIVE of X comes to pass instead of X.
        OOPS! Calvin’s god got that one wrong.

        Another Calvinist testimony here insists that after Calvin’s god makes a decree to RENDER-CERTAIN X INFALLIBLY come to pass.
        And along with that he also decrees to RENDER-CERTAIN the NEGATION of his decree.
        OOPS! Calvin’s god isn’t smart enough tot know its a logical impossibility to make make a decree both TRUE and FALSE.

        Divine omniscience requires knowing the TRUTH VALUE of every proposition.
        And there is no such thing as TRUE=FALSE.

        So with the current Calvinist testimonies – on the Monopoly board of omniscience – Calvin’s god doesn’t have a get out of jail card. :-]

      3. FROMOVERHERE
        NOVEMBER 16, 2018 AT 11:14 AM
        Myth #21
        Calvinist adhere closely to the Word of God expect for the thousands of times it says, “I would have,” “I could have,” “I did not expect,” “If you had only…I would have,” “Since you have… I will now….” Those are all special verses where YHWH does not mean what He clearly say.

        Loading…
        ———————————-

        WOW, Here we are again… My friend FOH — the “Mr. hundreds and thousands of scripture verses”. so… will will expect again reposting of those loads of Scriptures… You have also posted your own version of Myth # 21 = so… how does it become a myth?… those hundreds and thousands of verses? = The correct answer is: You have just mis-interpreted, out of context as it is used, disregarded its true meaning in order to destroy Calvinism.

      4. jtleosala to FOH
        You have just mis-interpreted, out of context as it is used, disregarded its true meaning in order to destroy Calvinism.

        br.d
        I think this is funny.
        Calvinists accuse non-Calvinists of misinterpreting, distorting or trying to destroy Calvinism.
        They then represent Calvinism with false statements.

        This requires me – a non-Calvnist to post direct quotes from John Calvin himself – to show they’ve done so.

        Which they either totally ignore – or try to argue Calvin didn’t mean what he said.

        No one can distort Calvinism any better than the Calvinist can! :-]

    3. Hi Norm , You wrote this and I repost it here : “Myth #17
      “If one cannot grasp the scriptural basis of Calvinism, then one is not yet scripturally astute.”

      “Myth #18”
      “Calvinists do not engage in theological smuggery.”
      ————————

      Here is my Reaction : It is because your mind and heart has been darkened…. so you need to be regenerated first so that God will give you the faith for you to exercise and trust Christ and His words.

      1. tleosala
        It is because your mind and heart has been darkened…. so you need to be regenerated first so that God will give you the faith for you to exercise and trust Christ and His words.

        br.d
        Calvinists often remind me of Soteriological palm readers.
        The Greeks would call them Vestal Virgins
        Anointed with the ability to SEE inside of people and are able to SEE their hearts.

        Calvinists have the Vestal Virgin anointing!
        They are also good at reading Soteriological tea leaves :-]

  15. Rhutchin writes,

    “No, the verses mean what they say. The problem comes when people extrapolate from these verses to argue that God is not omniscient or did not know what He was doing”

    My reply – “Extrapolate” (Dictionary Meaning) – extend the application of (a method or conclusion) to an unknown situation by assuming that existing trends will continue or similar methods will be applicable.

    Sounds more like Calvinism to me! Which leads us to Myth #22.

    Myth #22
    Calvinism doesn’t believe that everything that comes to pass is rendered certain. They just believe that whatever is rendered certain will come to pass, and everything that comes to pass is rendered certain.

    1. Hey DG,
      Bet they wonder what I extrapolate from Jeremiah 18:

      5 Then the word of the Lord came to me. 6 He said, “Can I not do with you, Israel, as this potter does?” declares the Lord. “Like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand, Israel. 7 If at any time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be uprooted, torn down and destroyed, 8 and if that nation I warned repents of its evil, then I will relent and not inflict on it the disaster I had planned. 9 And if at another time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be built up and planted, 10 and if it does evil in my sight and does not obey me, then I will reconsider the good I had intended to do for it.
      ——–

      Doesn’t sound like God is telling us in the plethora of passages like this that He has rendered certain everything before time, huh?

      This, BTW, is the potter that Paul refers to in Romans 9 and the Calvinists butcher so badly. (Wait… maybe they aren’t butchering; maybe they are extrapolating!)

      1. FOH writes, “Doesn’t sound like God is telling us in the plethora of passages like this that He has rendered certain everything before time, huh?”

        Doesn’t say anything about it. It is a straightforward description of the manner in which God responds to the actions people take. Nothing prevents God knowing those actions in the past.

      2. rhutchin
        Doesn’t say anything about it. It is a straightforward description of the manner in which God RESPONDS to the actions people take.

        br.d
        Notice this language: “RESPONDS to the actions people take” is designed to infer IN-deterministic action of peoples part AS-IF people can act IN-deterministically within a world where IN-determinism does not exist.
        This is a consistent misleading semantic – made by Calvinists.

        Theological Determinism stipulates Calvin’s god CAUSES what people are and CAUSES the actions people take.

        William Lane Craig agrees:
        -quote:
        [Calvin’s] god would be like a child who sets up his toy soldiers and moves them about his play world, pretending that they are real persons whose every motion is not in fact of his own doing and pretending that they merit praise or blame.”

      3. br.d writes, “Notice this language: “RESPONDS to the actions people take” is designed to infer IN-deterministic action of peoples part ”

        It just means that the decree X in eternity past and executes (or responds with) that decree in the course of time.

      4. br.d
        “Notice this language: “RESPONDS to the actions people take” is designed to infer IN-deterministic action of peoples part ”

        rhutchin
        It just means that the decree X in eternity past and executes (or responds with) that decree in the course of time.

        br.d
        Now THAT is an honest Calvinist statement.
        “Responding to his own decree” is logically consistent with Calvinism.

        “RESPONDS to the actions people take AS-IF they acted IN-deterministically (in a world in which IN-determinism does not exist) is double-speak.

        So the first statement served as another example of what Calvinist double-speak looks like. :-]

        To understand Calvinism is pretty simple:
        A Calvinist is a determinist – wearing a mask of IN-determinism – reciting double-speak talking-points.

      5. br.d writes, “Responding to his own decree” is logically consistent with Calvinism.”

        Better stated as “Responding or executing in the course of time those decrees made in eternity past.”

      6. br.d
        Responding to his own decree” is logically consistent with Calvinism.”

        rhutchin
        Better stated as “Responding or executing in the course of time those decrees made in eternity past.”

        br.d
        Sure – Calvin’s god RESPONDS to something that comes to pass infallibly- because he’s wants to make-believe it doesn’t :-]

        William Lane Craig:
        [Calvin’s] god would be like a child who sets up his toy soldiers and moves them about his play world, pretending that they are real persons whose every motion is not in fact of his own doing and pretending that they merit praise or blame.

        Sure looks just like your version of Calvin’s god rhutchin! :-]

      7. Let the reader take note:

        On a daily basis in my Bible reading I see God interacting with man and making decisions based on what man does. It is plain to see… literally hundreds of time. Yesterday I stated this….

        “Doesn’t sound like God is telling us in the plethora of passages like this that He has rendered certain everything before time, huh?”

        To which our resident Qadr-fatalist (that is the identical belief in Islam (Insha’Alla) that God has determined all things, indeed rendered-certain all things) said this…

        “Doesn’t say anything about it. It is a straightforward description of the manner in which God responds to the actions people take. Nothing prevents God knowing those actions in the past.”

        Let the reader take note that I said it does not appear in these hundreds of passages that God has rendered-certain all things (God is often saying “If you do this, I will do this…” ). To which our Qadr-fatalist CHANGED the idea from rendered-certain to “knows the actions.”

        It is absolutely ridiculous of Calvin and his minions to say that God renders-certain all things when we see Him debate, plead, negotiate, warn, admonish, encourage, scold, mankind. Then sometimes He says he will …and does …change His mind (relents, repents).

        So….to soften the ridiculous-ness….. it is changed to He “knows these things.”

        And even softer Piper-esque approach is He “allows these things.”

        Whatever. That is just the wimps way out. They just dont want to repeat Calvin’s very clear teaching that God renders-certain all things (even sin).

      8. FOH writes, “It is absolutely ridiculous of Calvin and his minions to say that God renders-certain all things when we see Him debate, plead, negotiate, warn, admonish, encourage, scold, mankind. Then sometimes He says he will …and does …change His mind (relents, repents). ”

        Calvinists maintain that God is omniscient; you disagree.

      9. rhutchin
        Calvinists maintain that God is omniscient; you disagree.

        br.d
        FALSE
        I’m wondering what grade in elementary-school this Calvinist is currently at.

        And a friendly remember:
        As it stands currently per the testimony of current Calvinists here – Calvin’s god isn’t omniscient enough to know the difference between fallible and infallible. He considers restraining what is logically impossible to restrain – and he doesn’t know better.

        Criteria for omniscience requires knowing the truth value of every proposition:

        So on the Monopoly board of omniscience – Calvin’s god still needs a get out of jail card. :-]

    2. Myth #22
      Calvinism doesn’t believe that everything that comes to pass is rendered certain. They just believe that whatever is rendered certain will come to pass, and everything that comes to pass is rendered certain.

      Yes that is correct.

      Not only that – according to Calvinist testimonies Calvin’s god OBEYS John Calvin’s instructions.
      Calvin’s god determines everything in every part.
      And then -quote “goes about his office AS-IF he didn’t”
      That’s why he -quote ‘makes an active decision not to restrain” what he decrees to infallibly come to pass.
      He’s OBEYING John Calvin’s commands.

      This conception shows us that Calvin’s god is actually a figment of Calvinist thinking :-]

      1. br.d writes, ‘That’s why he -quote ‘makes an active decision not to restrain” what he decrees to infallibly come to pass.”

        The active decision was made in eternity past and is His decree. Active decision is contrasted with bare permission by Calvin.

      2. br.d
        ‘That’s why he -quote ‘makes an active decision not to restrain” what he decrees to infallibly come to pass.”
        Which (IF he were omniscient) he would know is logically impossible.

        rhutchin
        The active decision was made in eternity past and is His decree. Active decision is contrasted with bare permission by Calvin.

        br.d
        Right – there is no such thing as “bare” permission in Theological Determinism.
        The only thing Calvin’s god permits come to pass is what he renders-certain come to pass.

        Now *IF* X is REALLY rendered-certain to INFALLIBLY come to pass at time T – then it cannot NOT come to pass at time T.
        Neither can it be “restrained” from coming to pass at time T.

        And logic does not allow for Calvin’s god to make X infallible and NOT infallible at the same time.

        But we already know this is REALLY what you want.

        Look – rhutchin it is totally understood that Calvinists today have a love-hate relationship with Theological Determinism.

        Your statement is nothing more than your way of crafting language designed to put a mask of IN-determinism over it.

        Your simply doing what Ex-Calvinist Daniel Gracely wrote he used to do as a Calvinist.
        -quote
        This is what I used to do as a Calvinist. I liken these non-sense statements, or propositions, to the riding of a rocking horse. As a Calvinist rider, I would throw my weight forward toward my belief in the absolute sovereignty of God until I could go no further, whereupon I would recoil backwards toward my belief in human freedom. Thus I would go back and forth in seesaw motion, lest on the one hand I find myself accusing God of insufficient sovereignty, or on the other hand find myself accusing God of authoring sin. All the while, there remained an illusion of movement towards truth, when in fact there was no real movement at all. At length I would allow the springs of dialectical tension to rest the rocking horse in the center, and then I would declare as harmonious propositions which, in fact, were totally contradictory to each other. Calvinist riders still ride out this scenario.

      3. br.d writes, “Right – there is no such thing as “bare” permission in Theological Determinism.”

        That was Calvin’s point – God cannot ordain through bare permission.

      4. br.d
        “Right – there is no such thing as “bare” permission in Theological Determinism.”

        rhutchin
        That was Calvin’s point – God cannot ordain through bare permission.

        br.d
        The words “No such thing” should be fairly easy for an adult mind to understand.
        Your brain appears to still be in “broken record” mode. :-]

    3. Daily Bible reading in Ezekiel 33 (careful… I’m gonna extrapolate!!)

      7 “Now, son of man, I am making you a watchman for the people of Israel. Therefore, listen to what I say and warn them for me. 8 If I announce that some wicked people are sure to die and you fail to tell them to change their ways, then they will die in their sins, and I will hold you responsible for their deaths. 9 But if you warn them to repent and they don’t repent, they will die in their sins, but you will have saved yourself.
      ————

      Oh boy…. doesnt sound very “rendered-certain-before-time” to me! Sound like things could go either way.

      But WAIT! There’s more!

      11 As surely as I live, says the Sovereign Lord, I take no pleasure in the death of wicked people. I only want them to turn from their wicked ways so they can live. Turn! Turn from your wickedness, O people of Israel! Why should you die?
      —————-

      Calvinists say he passes over and renders-certain the eternal punishment of most of humanity…. “for His glory,” but here He says He takes no pleasure in this…. He “only wants them to turn!” Why not…. please turn people!

      But WAIT! There’s more!

      12 “Son of man, give your people this message: The righteous behavior of righteous people will not save them if they turn to sin, nor will the wicked behavior of wicked people destroy them if they repent and turn from their sins. 13 When I tell righteous people that they will live, but then they sin, expecting their past righteousness to save them, then none of their righteous acts will be remembered. I will destroy them for their sins. 14 And suppose I tell some wicked people that they will surely die, but then they turn from their sins and do what is just and right. 15 For instance, they might give back a debtor’s security, return what they have stolen, and obey my life-giving laws, no longer doing what is evil. If they do this, then they will surely live and not die. 16 None of their past sins will be brought up again, for they have done what is just and right, and they will surely live.
      ———

      This just gets better and better. Where is JTL when you need him so we don’t extrapolate from these passages!?

      1. Aw shucks DG,

        It was rendered-certain from before time that I make that comment that all things are not rendered-certain. Couldn’t help but do it.

        I am, however, thinking of attending Extrapolators Anonymous so I can kick the habit!

      2. This just gets better and better. Where is JTL when you need him so we don’t extrapolate from these passages!?

        br.d
        He’s out there somewhere asserting:
        True=False
        Rendered-Certain = NOT Rendered-certain
        Infallible = NOT infallible
        Immutable = NOT immutable
        Determinism = IN-determinism ….etc

        Because – for good events he needs determinism to be TRUE – and for evil events he needs determinism to be FALSE.

        There but for the grace of God go I.

      3. br.d,

        I’m thinking of helping them come up with a formula.

        God rendered-certain everything that was good and perfect.

        God rendered “whatever” everything that was neutral (how many times a cat will lick his left arm and wipe behind his ear before stopping).

        God rendered ambiguous Adam’s actions. Tricky part: If He renders-certain that sinless (no sin nature) Adam commit sin, then He (the Lord) is responsible. But if He does not render-certain sinless (no sin nature) Adam’s sin then —— wait for it….. wait….. Calvin (bless him!) cannot be accurate that He renders-certain everything.

        FOH
        ps. Ambiguous can be exchanged for “mystery” and “compatibalism”
        pps. Try this new wonder formula. If it doesn’t work for you, rinse and repeat…. and repeat…. and repeat.

      4. These are good FOH!

        Especially this one:
        If Calvin’s god does not render-certain Adam’s sin (Adam not having a sin nature) then Calvin’s doctrine which is founded upon the assertion that Calvin’s god renders-certain *ALL* things which come to pass – is FALSE.

        I like you quip also!
        Very smart!

        Good events Calvin’s god renders “certain”
        Neutral events Calvin’s god renders “whatever”
        Sinful evil events Calvin’s god renders “ahhhhhhhhhhh!!!’ – “permits” no I mean “allows” no I mean “refrains” no I mean “causes” – no I mean “sits back and watches” – no I mean………oh &%?*%# where did I put Calvin’s magic wand!!! :-]

      5. FOH writes, “Calvinists say he passes over and renders-certain the eternal punishment of most of humanity…. “for His glory,” but here He says He takes no pleasure in this…. He “only wants them to turn!” Why not…. please turn people!”

        If God does not save each and every person then He wills the death of those He does not save and God’s will is His pleasure – if not, God would not will it..

      6. rhutchin
        If God does not save each and every person then He wills the death of those He does not save and God’s will is His pleasure – if not, God would not will it..

        br.d
        In short “Calvin’s god’s will is His pleasure – if not, Calvin’s god would not will it”

        This is logically consistent with Theological Determinism – VERY CALVINISTIC.

    4. Myth #22
      Calvinism believe that everything that comes to pass is rendered certain. They also believe that whatever was rendered certain in the past will come to pass, and everything that comes to pass was rendered certain in the past.

      1. Myth #22
        Calvinism believe that everything that comes to pass is rendered certain. They also believe that whatever was rendered certain in the past will come to pass, and everything that comes to pass was rendered certain in the past.

        br.d
        But X rendered-certain to infallibly come to pass may NOT come to pass at all – because Calvin’s god builds the fallibility of infallible into his decree. : An ALTERNATIVE of X which was rendered-certain can come to pass INSTEAD of X.

        In other words he can make X both infallible and NOT infallible, immutable and NOT immutable, rendered-certain and NOT rendered-certain, decreed and NOT decreed.

        All these things – just by waving Harry Potter’s magic wand. :-]

  16. Hi Br.D : I repost here below your quote:

    “Damon”
    “The doctrine I embrace is the death burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.”

    “I reject any other doctrine in regard to salvation including”
    – Total Insanity
    – Unconditional Absurdity
    – Limited Intelligence
    – Irresistible Double Speak
    and
    – Split Personality of the Saints.”
    ———————–
    Here is my Response : It seems that you’re too angry now with the Calvinists. Here is my question for you:
    1. Do you consider us as your enemy? Yes ___ No___
    2. Do you affirm and believe in the command of Christ to love your enemies? Yes ___ No___
    3. Do you really love the Calvinists equally head to head and equally with the love you give to yourself? Yes___ No___

    By the way your acronym is not exact. The last letter must be P not S. You really like the TULIP… that’s good…

    1. jtleosala
      Hi Br.D : I repost here below your quote:

      – Total Insanity
      – Unconditional Absurdity
      – Limited Intelligence
      – Irresistible Double Speak
      and
      – Split Personality of the Saints.”
      ———————–

      It seems that you’re too angry now with the Calvinists.

      br.d
      Boy I hardly know how you can come to that conclusion considering how much entertainment I get from Calvinist double-think.
      But no problem if you think that – its ok with me.

      jtleosala
      Here is my question for you:
      1. Do you consider US as your enemy? Yes ___ No___

      br.d
      Here I think the word US means Calvinists.

      If you asked Jesus if he declared the Pharisees to be his enemy – I think he would say that they declared him their enemy.
      And not the other way around.

      Nevertheless – he still charged them with being white washed sepulchers and vipers.
      And every time they tempted him – he knew they were being dishonest.
      And he always showed people the masks they wore and taught people how to recognize dishonesty.

      You can’t go wrong making Jesus your golden standard. :-]

      jtleosala
      Do you affirm and believe in the command of Christ to love your enemies? Yes ___ No___

      See answer above – Jesus is the golden standard.

      jtleosala
      3. Do you really love the Calvinists equally head to head and equally with the love you give to yourself? Yes___ No___

      Again – Jesus is the golden standard.
      While Jesus revealed the games the Pharisees played he perfectly fulfilled God’s commandment to love.

      jtleosala
      By the way your acronym is not exact. The last letter must be P not S. You really like the TULIP… that’s good…

      br.d
      I did get a kick out of Damon’s Tulip – it is funny!
      Especially “Irresistible Double Speak” :-]

      But to the topic of Calvinism’s tulip – I am convinced it is nothing more than window dressing on the outside of the house.
      Every house requires a foundation.
      The foundation of the house of Calvinism is the philosophy of Universal Causal Divine Determinism.

  17. This is a part of FOH’s POST: “This just gets better and better. Where is JTL when you need him so we don’t extrapolate from these passages!?”
    ——————————–

    Hi, FOH my friend….. Did you miss me?… I miss you too…

  18. DG: You are evading to answer the question. There is no need for you to put words on the mouth of Jesus Christ to reveal the true contents of your heart towards loving your neighbor including Calvinists like myself, MacArthur, Piper, Sproul and John Calvin himself?

    1. jtleosala
      I mean it to Br.D. not DG. It’s just a typo error

      br.d
      You should start over here — its not clear what you mean or who you are trying to address.

      BTW: On your question about fulfilling the command of scripture/Jesus to love your neighbor

      I think for anyone who reviews our posts – the SOT101 readers can see between us – which of us consistently points to and represents Jesus Christ as the standard of reference – and which one of us points to and represents John Calvin as the standard of reference.

      So your question highlights that for others to see also – and I think that is beneficial for everyone.

      1. CALVINISM AND LOVE THY NEIGHBOR

        Historian J.B. Galiffe translated the official Geneva records which were created during Calvin’s reign.
        These detail the various citizens who were routinely brought before Calvin’s official Consistory for inquisition.
        Calvin’s officers deployed a network of spies, to monitor private activities within the homes of Geneva’s citizens.

        Imprisonment for falling asleep during Calvin’s sermon, imprisonment for discussing business maters on church property. Punishments for music or dancing as impious sin. Punishment for being caught singing in one’s home. Speaking against Calvin’s teachings resulted in floggings, beheadings, tongue-burnings, and banishment. Torture on the rack for speaking critically of Calvin or his sermon.

        Galiffe writes that Geneva citizens were regularly:
        -quote:
        “scourged, reviled, obliged to walk in the streets barefoot wearing a penitential habit and carrying a torch to expiate for what Calvin arbitrarily called blasphemies…. ”

        58 executions subdivided by method of death:
        13 persons hanged, 10 beheaded, 55 quartered, 35 burned alive after being tortured…..
        Often many of these in a single day….

        Women who nursed family members back to health could be accused of witchcraft, and burned alive.

        Geneva magistrates on behalf of Calvin, recorded in the official Consistory’s registry – 414 punishments, including the murder of 150 women.

        And yet – Galiffe also notes the sociological effects:
        -quote:
        “Never before did immorality take hold and spread as it did in the period of John Calvin’s government.”

        Human psychological needs are not easily eradicated by religious fervor.
        And what we see in Geneva’s records appears as a backlash affect, to a paternal character of malevolence.

  19. IS SCRIPTURE ANTAGONISTIC TO LOGIC

    Scripture is often pitted against logic. Colossians 2:8 for example. “See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy…” However, on closer look it becomes clear “philosophy” in general is not the focus. Rather, the Greek grammar is pointing to a certain TYPE of philosophy. A philosophy that is κενῆς (empty) and ἀπάτης (misleading).

    Paul is not instructing believers to be antagonistic towards logic – but the exact opposite. He is instructing them to use discernment when examining logic – and to be on the lookout for a TYPE of logic that is empty or misleading.

    What does Paul mean by “empty” logic? Personally, I liken Paul’s use of the word “empty” to our English word “facade” (i.e., a structure designed to produce a false appearance). Here an appearance is masqueraded – but behind the mask – the substance is “empty” which the mask is designed to present.

    Language is the outward expression – the thermometer if you will – of one’s logic. And Calvinism’s language therefore serves as an excellent indicator of a logic which has the characteristics of presenting facades – and is therefore strategically misleading.

    As Dr. Jerry Walls has noted:
    “If Calvinism didn’t use misleading rhetoric it would lose all credibility in two years”.

    As Dr. William Lane Craig has noted in a few different ways:
    Sadly yet consistently Calvinists fail to enunciate the radical distinctions inherent in their belief system.

    Calvinism is tenaciously committed to the philosophical construct of Universal Divine Causal Determinism. In determinism everything occurs within a causal chain in which one event causes the next. Obviously every chain of events has a starting point – known as the PRIMARY causal event. John Calvin is unafraid to boldly state this: “The will of god is the PRIMARY CAUSE of all things”.

    Hence Theological Determinism brings with it a burden the believer cannot avoid. Nothing has existence unless Calvin’s god FIRST CONCEIVES it and then RENDERS-CERTAIN its existence. According to the principle of determinism Calvin’s god does not “allow” or “permit” sins/evils, in the common meaning of the terms “allow” and “permit”. Rather, sins and evils are FIRST CONCEIVED in Calvin’s gods mind at the foundation of the world. He then RENDERS-CERTAIN they and they alone exist. And it logically follows – when X is RENDERED-CERTAIN to exist – no ALTERNATIVE of X will exist instead of X. Hence Calvin’s insistence that the decree is “immutable” (i.e., unchangeable).

    And logic that insists Calvin’s god can make something exist and NOT exist at the same time is “empty” and “misleading” logic.

    Calvin – because his doctrine was founded on Theological Determinism – had a few detractors whom he addressed in his writings. But up through the years since then – the majority of Christianity increasingly distanced itself from his doctrine. Because that is the case today – Calvinism’s “author of evil” problem is well known within mainstream Christianity. As a result Calvinists cannot speak or write as boldly and matter-of-factly as Calvin himself dared do in his day.

    Unfortunately, the Calvinist strategy has displayed a very long-term evolution – into a language full of evasive euphemisms and strategically misleading talking-points designed to hide its dark aspects. It has fully become a language of double-speak. In my mind, Calvinism’s language meets the criteria of the philosophy Paul was addressing.

    Calvinist language is designed to present a masked face – a façade. Within the context of good events, determinism functions as Calvinism’s pride and joy. But in the context of sin and evil – determinism functions as a mark of darkness – which they can be observed diligently seeking to hide behind semantic masks of IN-indeterminism.

    Ultra orthodox Calvinists wear this mark on their forehead with pride. This small percentage of Calvinists simply don’t care – Calvin’s god is sovereign and he will “irresistibly” draw those whom he “elects” to himself. They speak boldly and matter-of-factly as Calvin himself did. But such staunch Calvinists are few and far between today. The majority of serious Calvinists work to promote and defend the belief system by the use of a highly refined misleading language where terms have hidden shifted meanings – like the pea in the classic shell game.

    Calvinists are diligent to not be seen crossing the line of honesty into full blown lying. But will sometimes without hesitation go over that line when it is deemed necessary. And this tactic – because it is antithetical to Christ – simply adds an additional specter to Calvinism’s reputation. The willingness to sacrifice the reputation of Christ in order to defend the reputation of a tradition serves as another red flag.

  20. WITH THEIR TU-LIPS THEY SAY THEY DON’T OBJECT – BUT IS THE HEART FAR FROM IT

    If one stays abreast of the latest academic contributions to ongoing discussions on Theological Determinism, and its logical consequences to human free will – one will eventually note one of the most consistent objections by its detractors – the IN-determinist.

    What is sighted as consistently objectionable – is the fact that in Theological Determinism – that which determines every aspect of the human – is entirely outside of his control – it being the case that according to this scheme every aspect of the creature without exception is determined before the creature is born (i.e., at the foundation of the world) – a point which the creature (i.e. human) doesn’t exist – and therefore has absolutely no say in any part of the matter.

    Theological Determinists however, assert that they do not share this objection. They are fully content with having a THEOS at the foundation of the world determining every neurological impulse they will ever have. They are fully content with having every minute aspect of their nature, choices, inclinations, and actions – predestined in every part by a THEOS before they were born.

    They don’t have omniscience of course – so they can’t possibly know what impulse – good or evil – the THEOS has predestined them to have in their very next moment. But even then – they do not object to it. The fact that every aspect of their being is predestined to be what it will be – by an external force outside of their control – is of no psychological or emotional consequence. They are completely indifferent to it.

    But is that really the case? Are they really being honest?

    When one analyzes a multitude of Calvinist arguments here for example – it should become clear that a massive amount of energy and calculated thinking is put into crafting statements which paint a cosmetic picture of IN-determinism – the very existence of which is logically negated by Theological Determinism – which they indicate they’ve fully embraced.

    In bold statements they assert they don’t object in the least. But these statements are invariably followed by massive amounts of arguments in full conflict. A multitude of statements are clearly designed to paint a picture of humans having a form of NOVEL determination – which presupposes humans having determinations not created and rendered-certain – by a THEOS before they were born.
    These are of course presuppositions which Theological Determinism simply does not allow.

    So what is boldly asserted with one hand – is subtly and craftily taken back with the other.

    I think therefore that with their TU-LIPS they say they don’t object.
    But their hearts are far from it. :-]

  21. Br.D Writes : “But is that really the case? Are they really being honest?”

    My Reply : He is the one who is not honest to himself since he cannot answer the question directly coming from his heart. The question is :

    1. You are affirming that God loves all people and that you also love your neighbor as yourself. Question : Do you really love head to head equally John Calvin? Piper?, Sproul?, Macarthur?, James White?, Ruthchin? and Myself?

    Below I repost Br.D.’s previous answer:

    My Question: Do you really love the Calvinists equally head to head and equally with the love you give to yourself? Yes___ No___

    Here is Br.D.’s answer: “Again – Jesus is the golden standard.
    While Jesus revealed the games the Pharisees played he perfectly fulfilled God’s commandment to love.”

    Notice he cannot directly say it, instead he take cover to Jesus Christ, when I am not asking if Jesus Loves the Calvinists. (not the pharisees)

    So… how do we conclude this? , Perfectly, Its’s a “decoy love of Br.D” = The Myth # 14

    1. Br.D
      “But is that really the case? Are they really being honest?”

      jtleosala
      My Reply : He is the one who is not honest to himself since he cannot answer the question directly coming from his heart. The question is :

      1. You are affirming that God loves all people and that you also love your neighbor as yourself.

      br.d
      FIRSTLY:
      Calvinism does not affirm “God loves all people” – so you might want to get the facts straight before jumping off a cliff.

      Calvinist Arthur W. Pink
      -quote:
      When we say that God is sovereign in the exercise of his love, we mean that he LOVES WHOM HE CHOOSES.
      ***GOD DOES NOT LOVE EVERYBODY***

      SECONDLY:
      You seem to disagree with the statement that when Jesus called the Pharisees “White washed sepulchers” and “vipers” that action by Jesus disqualified him from obeying the divine command to love his neighbor.

      If so – I disagree.

      THIRDLY:
      If Jesus can call Pharisees “vipers” and point out their dishonesties – and scripture declares that Jesus is the πρωτότοκος (the divine model for the believer) – (We shall be like him for we shall see him as he is).
      Then it logically follows that a believer (like me) can follow Jesus’ standard – and fulfill the divine command to love thy neighbor.

      So far your argument fails simple logic.

      FOURTHLY:
      Your assertion is based upon a presupposition which you do not state – that the act of pointing out dishonesty etc – disqualifies a person from obeying the divine command.

      If that is the case then – you are condemned by your own judgment.
      For you posted to a person here at SOT101 that their heart was dark and that they needed salvation.
      And I would never assume to tell a person something like that.

      So I think God has allowed this dialog between us so that you could do some personal inventory.
      Let the grace of God rule in your heart.

      1. Br.D. Writes :Then it logically follows that a believer (like me) can follow Jesus’ standard – and fulfill the divine command to love thy neighbor.
        ————————————–
        My Response : What I know is that Jesus Christ is the only one who can perfectly comply that command of “loving your neighbor”. Man’s attempt and efforts to follow that command is still imperfect, just a reflection of his own imperfection. I once posed a question here, I’m sure you were able to read in the previous threads, ie.:

        “If you really love your neighbor (as you love yourself), then when you buy new clothes for yourself, and new car for yourself, do you also do the same to your neighbor, or you just give off your old clothes and the second hand car that you don’t like it anymore?”

        If you fail, then you have not completely complied the command, still a failure, superficial and a false claim.

      2. Br.D.
        Then it logically follows that a believer (like me) can follow Jesus’ standard – and fulfill the divine command to love thy neighbor.

        jtleosala
        What I know is that Jesus Christ is the only one who can perfectly comply that command of “loving your neighbor”. Man’s attempt and efforts to follow that command is still imperfect,…etc

        br.d
        When did I ever claim perfection?
        JT – I do applaud you for attempts at logic – this is a step in the right direction.
        But you would be wise to think things through a little before you make irrational posts.

        On top of that – you’ve condemned yourself by your own judgement here -remember?

        jtleosala
        “If you really love your neighbor (as you love yourself), then when you buy new clothes for yourself, and new car for yourself, do you also do the same to your neighbor, or you just give off your old clothes and the second hand car that you don’t like it anymore?”

        br.d
        An excellent point.
        I worked for a number of years in an city office building and took almost daily walks to a little store for lunch.
        And bought food for homeless people sitting on the side-walk – and talked to them about Jesus when they were open to it.

        I had a Calvinist friend who would sometimes walk with me.
        He never once gave anything to anyone in my sight – he just wanted to talk about how superior he was as a Calvinist
        Where did he learn that as an example of Christ?

        jtleosala
        If you fail, then you have not completely complied the command, still a failure, superficial and a false claim.

        br.d
        Sure that is true – and a good statement.
        But you have certainly not shown that to be the case.
        Your simply shooting yourself in the foot here – and you appear to be doubling down.
        You didn’t learn that from Scripture – where did you learn it from?

        I say for your benefit – you will be handicapped all your life – if you don’t learn the first principles of rational reasoning – no one will ever take you seriously. And even an atheist is able to recognize the signs of a hypocrite.

        If I were you – I would use our dialog for your edification.

      3. br.d writes, “If Jesus can call Pharisees “vipers” and point out their dishonesties – and scripture declares that Jesus is the πρωτότοκος (the divine model for the believer) – (We shall be like him for we shall see him as he is).
        Then it logically follows that a believer (like me) can follow Jesus’ standard – and fulfill the divine command to love thy neighbor.”

        That is because the believer is indwelt by the Holy Spirit and has been born again resulting in a new nature (or inner man). However, even the believer still wars against the flesh. As JTL notes following Paul in Romans 7, “I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wishes to do good. For I joyfully concur with the law of God in the inner man, but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind, and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members.”

      4. br.d
        “If Jesus can call Pharisees “vipers” and point out their dishonesties – and scripture declares that Jesus is the πρωτότοκος (the divine model for the believer) – (We shall be like him for we shall see him as he is). Then it logically follows that a believer (like me) can follow Jesus’ standard – and fulfill the divine command to love thy neighbor.”

        rhutchin
        even the believer still wars against the flesh. As JTL notes following Paul in Romans 7, …etc

        br.d
        No problem with what Paul says – very true.
        But again – unfortunately for JT – he has unwittingly condemned himself with his own judgement.
        Paul also says: You who preach against stealing, do you steal?

        JT has the burden of showing where br.d has violated the commandment to love thy neighbor.
        He doesn’t appear to have the first inclination about how to go about that task.
        And before he even starts he’s already condemned himself.

        And I think any inclination for a Calvinist here to call the kettle black will certainly back-fire.
        Calvinists have developed a well recognized reputation for lack of honesty that they need to address.
        Currently – they appear to believe they can get away with it – but that will not always be guaranteed.

    1. DG,
      I didn’t read your New Age article yet, but you inspired me to back up my Qadr statements about Islam = Calvinism. On a well-regarded Islam Q& A site…we have this….

      “Praise be to Allaah.
      Belief in al-qadar (the divine will and decree) is one of the pillars of faith, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, when he answered Jibreel’s question about faith: “(It means) believing in Allaah, His angels, His Books, His Messengers and the Last Day, and to believe in al-qadar (the divine decree) both good and bad.”

      What is meant by al-qadar is that Allaah has decreed all things from eternity and knows that they will happen at times that are known to Him, and in specific ways, and that He has written that and willed it, and they happen according to what He has decreed. [al-Qada’ wa’l-Qadar by Dr ‘Abd al-Rahmaan al-Mahmoud, p. 39].”

      Augustine apparently influenced both Mohammed and Calvin with his Greek philosophy!

    2. I only took a brief scan through it – was there something in there that connects Calvinism?

      However it was my understanding a few years ago that Piper was working with a ministry who is promoting “Chrislam”
      This is the synchronization of Christ with the Islamic religion.
      This would tend to make sense as both Calvinism and Islam are based on Theological Determinism
      But I haven’t heard anything about it since then.
      But then – I don’t keep my ear up to Pipers’s door either :-]

      There has been a very strong new age movement coming into the church through Catholicism.
      One of the ways this is entering in is through what is called “Contemplative Prayer”.
      Its akin to transcendental medication.

      An underlying premise within many of these new age teachings is that the Holy Spirit “takes over” the body.
      And one can see how this has influenced the pentecostal movement.

      1. Br D and his god writes : “JT has the burden of showing where br.d has violated the commandment to love thy neighbor.”
        “He doesn’t appear to have the first inclination about how to go about that task.”
        “And before he even starts he’s already condemned himself.”

        My Response : It is just like the prayer of the pharisee inside the temple comparing himself to the tax collector. Br d can identify himself with this as he tells his testimony of giving food tom the street beggar while the Calvinist refused to do what he has done. I think imo there is no need to advertise that thing here.

        I am just honest to myself that I cannot afford to perfectly comply the command to love our neighbor as we do love ourselves. All of us are still imperfect… so what will you expect from imperfect persons. you cannot say i am not doing good deeds to my neighbor… only that i cannot provide them a consistent equal amount of love. Our compliance will be measured by the amount of love we give to ourselves though I am not a Narcissist.

      2. Br D and his god writes : “JT has the burden of showing where br.d has violated the commandment to love thy neighbor.”
        “He doesn’t appear to have the first inclination about how to go about that task.”
        “And before he even starts he’s already condemned himself.”

        br.d
        And you call me angry!!!
        That’s too funny

        BTW: It is more accurate to say you condemned yourself with your own judgement.

        jtleosala
        My Response : It is just like the prayer of the pharisee inside the temple comparing himself to the tax collector. Br d can identify himself with this as he tells his testimony of giving food tom the street beggar while the Calvinist refused to do what he has done. I think imo there is no need to advertise that thing here.

        br.d
        Fine – if you want to see it that way – but I don’t remember saying “I thank you god I’m not like him”.
        But I do seem to recall you were the one who brought it up as a sign of loving ones neighbor.
        So I thought it was an appropriate example – both of myself – and of a Calvinist.

        jtleosala
        I am just honest to myself that I cannot afford to perfectly comply the command to love our neighbor as we do love ourselves. All of us are still imperfect… so what will you expect from imperfect persons. you cannot say i am not doing good deeds to my neighbor… only that i cannot provide them a consistent equal amount of love. Our compliance will be measured by the amount of love we give to ourselves though I am not a Narcissist.

        br.d
        Again with the subject of perfection – which of course I would never be silly enough to claim.

        I find this ironic because from my perspective it is almost always the Calvinist who boasts of being in the superior guild.
        I think you will find that Calvinism has a well established reputation for spiritual pride within the general Christian community.

      3. FOH writes :
        “Praise be to Allaah”.
        “Belief in al-qadar (the divine will and decree) is one of the pillars of faith, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, when he answered Jibreel’s question about faith: “(It means) believing in Allaah, His angels, His Books, His Messengers and the Last Day, and to believe in al-qadar (the divine decree) both good and bad.”

        My Reaction to that post : You might be influenced and be converted with that “al-qadar”… Everything you find from any literature that sounds similar to your taste is automatically thrown at us as a mode of a feeble attack… my goodness… that might backfire on you and your allies and your god. It will never have any effect on us.

      4. Neal Donald Walsh (New Age) – “The real issue is whether Hitler’s actions were “wrong.” Yet I have said over and over again that there is no “right” or “wrong” in the universe. A thing is not intrinsically right or wrong. A thing simply is.”

        John Piper – “God . . . brings about all things in accordance with his will. In other words, it isn’t just that God manages to turn the evil aspects of our world to good for those who love him; it is rather that he himself brings about these evil aspects for his glory and his people’s good. This includes—as incredible and as unacceptable as it may currently seem—God’s having even brought about the Nazis’ brutality at Birkenau and Auschwitz as well as the terrible killings of Dennis Rader and even the sexual abuse of a young child… Nothing that exists or occurs falls outside God’s ordaining will”

        Neal Donald Walsh (New Age) “Now your thought that Hitler was a monster is based on the fact that he ordered the killing of millions of people, correct? . . . Yet what if I told you that what you call “death” is the greatest thing that could happen to anyone—what then?

        My reply – I reckon Neal Donald Walsh and John Piper would agree on a lot of things.

      5. AH!
        I See – you’re recognizing correlations between the two world views.

        Yes – For me some of Calvinism’s evolution is based on Augustine’s synchronization of Gnosticism and NeoPlatonism with Catholic doctrine.

        The NeoPlatonists had a deity they called the “one”. The “one” was said to be “unindifferentiated”. That is to say he is a composite of both good and evil. And there is no line of demarcation between them. Good and evil are antithetical – but at the same time they are necessary constituents of the “one”.

        You’ve heard of the doctrine of “yin-yang”. This gives you an idea – as it is a more modern version of that thinking. Gnosticism taught that the cosmos contains an opposition of two principles, good and evil, each equal in relative power and necessity. And thus, we have a dualistic cosmos in which good and evil share equal divine status.

        The NeoPlatonists and the Gnostics shared different aspects of this thought and could call evil beautiful.

        Augustine wrote concerning this: ““And because this orderly arrangement maintains the harmony of the universe by this very contrast, it comes about that evil things must need be. In this way, the beauty of all things is in a manner configured, as it were, from antitheses, that is, from opposites: this is pleasing to us even in discourse”. (ord 1.7.19)

        Jonathon Edwards wrote similarly – although I don’t have the direct quote – it goes something like this “The glory of god’s goodness could scarcely shine forth without the glory of evil – nay- it could not shine forth at all……So evil is necessary if the glory of God is to be perfectly and completely displayed”.

        You can see reflections of the doctrine of “yin-yang” in these statements. Good and evil are both co-equal and necessary constituents of the “one”. And if I remember R.C. Sproul described god as “unindifferentiated”. You will notice there is a now-godly-good, now-godly-evil, alternating emphasis, consistent within Calvinistic language. And a recognizable characteristic is the framing of [concept pairs] reflecting a dualistic cosmos. This sometimes comes off as a form of glorified-evil. Some are ordained to the good – some are ordained to evil. And both reflect the glory of the “one”.

        I believe Piper is a student of Edwards. So it would make sense to see these concepts in his statements.
        Does that describe the conceptions you are seeing?

      6. It seems that New Age and the gnostic view of God have a lot similarities that reduce the separation of God and his creation, making God more of a force rather than relational. They both seem to say the “reality” is that they/we are all connected: And that right and wrong is an illusion.

        The similarity I see in Calvinism is that man doing evil is also an illusion because as Piper says – God brought all the evil about himself for his own glory. And all humanity is so connected to what God brings about that they cannot do otherwise than what God brings about.

        All of these make God out to be an impersonal mere puppeteer who enjoys making it appear like men have responsibility. God loses His identity and so does Satan and so do we. All is just this impersonal force we call god.

        Thank the LORD that is not who He is.

      7. I know what you mean.
        Yes – the line of demarcation between good and evil – that is so prevalent in Jesus’ statements goes away – and as you indicate good and evil become synchronized into one another.

        Did Piper give this quote?
        And all humanity is so connected to what God brings about that they cannot do otherwise than what God brings about.

        If so I’d like to add that to my library of quotes.
        Thanks

      8. Brd,
        That was my conclusion to what Piper’s theology would demand if followed. Sorry not a quote on that part. I’ll always invert comma a direct quote.

      9. DG writes, “My reply – I reckon Neal Donald Walsh and John Piper would agree on a lot of things.”

        So, are you now denying that God is omnipotent – a position you must take if you disagree with Piper.

      10. DG writes, “My reply – I reckon Neal Donald Walsh and John Piper would agree on a lot of things.”

        rhutchin
        So, are you now denying that God is omnipotent – a position you must take if you disagree with Piper.

        br.d
        This would be called the fallacy of false dichotomy.
        Unless of course John Piper’s version of omnipotence is in all aspects inerrant?

        Calvinists often like to position themselves in the seat of Moses – and then declare ‘he who is not with me is against god’.
        But I’ve never heard one come right out and claim to be infallible.
        Perhaps this will be the first time :-]

      11. br.d writes, “This would be called the fallacy of false dichotomy.”

        Given that you are unable to explain why this conclusion is true, we are left with your personal opinion that wouldn’t buy a cup of coffee at Macdonalds.

      12. br.d writes, “This would be called the fallacy of false dichotomy.”

        rhutchin
        Given that you are unable to explain why this conclusion is true, we are left with your personal opinion that wouldn’t buy a cup of coffee at Macdonalds.

        br.d
        If you are talking about the fallacy – I did explain it (see below).
        And I don’t happen to like McDEES coffee – but thanks anyway.

      13. br.d writes, “If you are talking about the fallacy – I did explain it (see below).”

        There was no below much less an explanation. My request is not to explain the fallacy – even you can read about it – but to explain how it applies in this situation. That’s not your strong suit.

      14. I think if we look at our previous dialogs together when you don’t get something – its typically a voluntary response.
        Some things should be easy enough to understand.

      15. br.d writes, “Some things should be easy enough to understand.”

        Depends on the ability of a person to explain and communicate a position. Some people can make easy things hard to understand.

      16. br.d
        “Some things should be easy enough to understand.”

        rhutchin
        Depends on the ability of a person to explain and communicate a position. Some people can make easy things hard to understand.

        br.d
        And as I’ve done a thousand times before – I can show you how that works – but you won’t like it! :-]

        First we take your quote:

        rhutchin
        November 20, 2018 at 6:46 pm
        I am not equivocating – you don’t want to accept *MY* definition.
        You make a distinction between “cause” and “permit” but there is no *REAL* distinction.

        We now provide a TRUTH STATEMENT which the Calvinist cannot call FALSE without lying.

        Truth Statement:
        The Calvinist CAUSED his horse go to the liquor store.
        Thus he PERMITTED his horse go to the liquor store.

        Now I already know from a thousand times before.
        Calvinism has trained you to MASQUERADE a distinction between CAUSE and PERMIT which isn’t *REAL* in Calvinism.
        And that’s why your response to this TRUTH STATEMENT has always been to SHAPE-SHIFT its wording.
        In order to HIDE the fact that Calvinists mean CAUSE when they say PERMIT.

        Dr. Bella M. DePaulo PHD (The many faces of lies)
        -quote:
        We define deception as a deliberate attempt to mislead others. Falsehoods communicated by people who are mistaken or self-deceived are not lies, but for the deceived person they are literal truths. However, literal truths that are designed to mislead others are in fact lies.

      17. br.d writes, “Truth Statement:
        The Calvinist CAUSED his horse go to the liquor store.
        Thus he PERMITTED his horse go to the liquor store.”

        Calvinist says, “God CAUSED the horse go to the liquor store.”
        Arminian says, “God PERMITTED the horse go to the liquor store.”
        The horse went to the liquor store. Did God cause it or permit it and what’s the distinction between the two words.

        Then, “Calvinism has trained you to MASQUERADE a distinction between CAUSE and PERMIT which isn’t *REAL* in Calvinism.”

        If you follow the discussion, I am saying that there is no distinction between cause and permit. I think LS8 is saying that there is.

      18. br.d
        First we take your quote:

        rhutchin
        November 20, 2018 at 6:46 pm
        I am not equivocating – you don’t want to accept *MY* definition.
        You make a distinction between “cause” and “permit” but there is no *REAL* distinction.

        We now provide a TRUTH STATEMENT which the Calvinist cannot call FALSE without lying.

        Truth Statement:
        The Calvinist CAUSED his horse go to the liquor store.
        Thus he PERMITTED his horse go to the liquor store.

        And that’s why your response to this TRUTH STATEMENT has always been to SHAPE-SHIFT its wording.
        In order to HIDE the fact that Calvinists mean CAUSE when they say PERMIT.

        rhutchin
        Calvinist says, “God CAUSED the horse go to the liquor store.”
        Arminian says, “God PERMITTED the horse go to the liquor store.”

        br.d
        That’s not going to work – the Calvinist is missing from the picture – we need to put him back in where he belongs.

        Calvinism says: “God CAUSED the Calvinist and the horse to go to the liquor store.
        Arminian says, “God PERMITTED the Calvinist and the horse to go to the liquor store.”

      19. br.d writes, “Calvinism says: “God CAUSED the Calvinist and the horse to go to the liquor store.
        Arminian says, “God PERMITTED the Calvinist and the horse to go to the liquor store.”

        Looks good to me. So, “…the Calvinist and the horse to go to the liquor store.” What’s the difference between “cause” and “permit” given that the outcome is not different?

      20. rhutchin
        br.d writes, “Calvinism says: “God CAUSED the Calvinist and the horse to go to the liquor store.
        Arminian says, “God PERMITTED the Calvinist and the horse to go to the liquor store.”

        Looks good to me. So, “…the Calvinist and the horse to go to the liquor store.” What’s the difference between “cause” and “permit” given that the outcome is not different?

        br.d
        The difference is ethics and honesty.

        Albert Mohler (American Historical Theologian)
        John Calvin does not avoid using the word “permit” in his pastoral ministry to those who suffer great loss.

        John Piper
        God has established a world in which sin will indeed necessarily come to pass by God’s permission.

        rhutchin
        November 20, 2018 at 6:46 pm
        I am not equivocating – you don’t want to accept *MY* definition.
        You make a distinction between “cause” and “permit” but there is no *REAL* distinction.

        Equivocation:
        Equivocation is the use of ambiguous language to CONCEAL the truth or to avoid committing to or acknowledging something that is true.

        Dr. Bella Depaulo’s (The many faces of lies).
        –quote:
        “We define deception as a deliberate attempt to mislead others. Falsehoods communicated by people who are mistaken or self-deceived are not lies. However literal truths designed to mislead are in fact lies.”

        It is obvious Calvinists use the word “Permit” knowing recipients are likely to be deceived into believing he does NOT MEAN CAUSE.
        This strategy of language is at minimum untrustworthy.
        Any ethical Christian would question and be on the lookout for strategic dishonesty.
        But not the Calvinist.

      21. br.d writes, “The difference is ethics and honesty.”

        In other words, you cannot ex[plaint the difference between “permit” and Cause.” Must not be a real difference..

      22. br.d
        “The difference is ethics and honesty.”

        rhutchin
        In other words, you cannot ex[plaint the difference between “permit” and Cause.” Must not be a real difference..

        br.d
        And Bill Clinton smiled and said: “That depends on what your definition of the word IS is”

        You betray yourself here.
        Calvinists are smart enough to discern when the words they craft into sentences are guaranteed to mislead.
        And your statements here serve as excellent examples of the language of equivocation.

        Equivocation:
        An equivocal statement is one, which is subject to two or more interpretations and usually used to mislead or confuse. Someone who is using equivocal language hides the fact that for him two sides are equal. Equivocation can therefore also be the strategy of deliberately avoiding alignment with one side or the other.

        The very reason Calvinists craft the word “permit” into sentences for public consumption – knowing the recipient is guaranteed to be mislead – unaware that the Calvinist makes no distinction between “permit” and “cause” – reveals everything.

        So while you maintain no difference between the two – you reveal that you are aware that per the common vernacular of the English language non-Calvinists do Therefore you are more than willing to craft statements you know will mislead.

        Your justifications are between you and your conscience.

      23. br.d writes, “And Bill Clinton smiled and said: “That depends on what your definition of the word IS is”

        br.d still cannot provide definitions of the terms, “permit” and “cause.” That is because the nature of sovereignty for God means that there is no real difference. To say that a sovereign God “permits” or “causes” is saying the same thing. If God were not sovereign, even br.d could easily define a difference. Perhaps LS8 could help him since he has objected to taking them to be the same.

      24. rhutchin
        br.d writes
        nd Bill Clinton smiled and said: “That depends on what your definition of the word IS is”

        br.d still cannot provide definitions of the terms, “permit” and “cause.” That is because the nature of sovereignty for God means that there is no real difference. To say that a sovereign God “permits” or “causes” is saying the same thing. If God were not sovereign, even br.d could easily define a difference. Perhaps LS8 could help him since he has objected to taking them to be the same.

        br.d
        I think you know good and well that you (as a Calvinist practice) use the word “permit” in public facing statements – and you are well aware that recipients don’t know that what is meant is “cause” within those statements. And you’re perfectly willing to mislead people.

        Equivocation:
        An equivocal statement is one, which is subject to two or more interpretations and usually used to mislead or confuse. Someone who is using equivocal language hides the fact that for him two sides are equal. Equivocation can therefore also be the strategy of deliberately avoiding alignment with one side or the other.

        Dr. Bella Depaulo’s (The many faces of lies).
        –quote:
        “We define deception as a deliberate attempt to mislead others. Falsehoods communicated by people who are mistaken or self-deceived are not lies. However literal truths designed to mislead are in fact lies.”

        As I said – Your justifications are between you and your conscience.

      25. br.d writes, “I think you know good and well that you (as a Calvinist practice) use the word “permit” in public facing statements – and you are well aware that recipients don’t know that what is meant is “cause” within those statements. ”

        br.d still cannot define the terms, “permit” and “cause.”

      26. rhutchin
        br.d writes, “I think you know good and well that you (as a Calvinist practice) use the word “permit” in public facing statements – and you are well aware that recipients don’t know that what is meant is “cause” within those statements. ”

        br.d still cannot define the terms, “permit” and “cause.”

        br.d
        Your’ chasing your tail at this point! :-]
        I’m happy to let SOT101 readers follow this thread and connect the dots.

  22. FOH writes: (quoting Islam Q & A site)
    “Praise be to Allaah”.
    “Belief in al-qadar (the divine will and decree) is one of the pillars of faith, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, when he answered Jibreel’s question about faith: “(It means) believing in Allaah, His angels, His Books, His Messengers and the Last Day, and to believe in al-qadar (the divine decree) both good and bad.”

    JTL’s reaction to that post : “You might be influenced and be converted with that “al-qadar”… Everything you find from any literature that sounds similar to your taste is automatically thrown at us as a mode of a feeble attack… my goodness… that might backfire on you and your allies and your god. It will never have any effect on us”

    Islam – “(Divine will and decree) is one of the pillars of the faith”

    John Calvin – ““Has an assassin slain an honest citizen? He has, say they, executed the counsel of God. Has some one committed theft or adultery? The deed having been provided and ordained by the Lord, he is the minister of his providence. Has a son waited with indifference for the death of his parent, without trying any remedy? He could not oppose God, who had so predetermined from eternity. Thus all crimes receive the name of virtues, as being in accordance with divine ordination.” (John Calvin, Institutes of Christian Religion, Book 1, Chapter 13, paragraph 3)

    I think you are on to something here FOH!

    1. DG,
      Maybe we should provide the Calvinist response to my comparison of Islam and your quoting Calvin and Piper (showing how they are the same).

      Calvinist: “My goodness… DG, you think you change our minds showing Calvin preached all evil is from God? You only fool yourself and only ever talk of logic…. My goodness, I will never change my mind no matter what you say or what the Bible says. We will still continue to name churches, publishing houses, seminaries and children after our beloved Calvin no matter how many people he tortured. He had to protect the faith! Besides, all torture was ordained by God… look at our Beloved Piper telling us that even the Holocaust was God’s doing and brought God glory.”

      ps. Calvinists, you may feel free to use the above quote as you like. No need to cite me as a reference. Just use it as your own!

  23. Below is a recreated, real conversation between a Calvinist (C) and a personal friend (F).

    C: How are you guys doing these days?

    F: My wife and I are find and our three girls are doing well. Our son is sick, and as you know is now 29 and has rejected what we taught him and turned his back completely on God.

    C: I am sorry to hear that. Sinful man is sinful.

    F: Yes, he is very rebellious, now rejecting any biblical truth about Christ. Were you aware that he now has terminal cancer?

    C: No. I did not know. Sorry about that.

    F: We are praying that he receives Christ before he passes. Christ will save him if he only believes.

    C: He will believe if that is God’s plan.

    F: We believe it is God’s desire that he come to Christ.

    C: He will come to Christ if that is God’s desire.

    F: Are you saying that it might be God’s desire that he not come to Christ?

    C: God made those decisions before time began and it is indeed possible that your son was not chosen.

    F: You mean, God chose my wife, me, and the three girls but did not chose my son?

    C: Well, I cannot say for sure if any of you are chosen, but I can say if your son dies rejecting Christ, he merits eternal punishment; we all deserve that. God enables the ones He wants saved.

    F: I know we all deserve death, but you are saying that only those that are “enabled” can repent, and that if they dont repent it was because they were not enabled?

    C: If they dont repent it is because they are sinful. They reject God.

    F: But they cannot repent unless —before time— God chose to enable them?

    C: Yes.

    F: And God enabled you, me, my wife, my girls?

    C: By all appearances.

    F: But not my son?

    C: God enables who He wants. Sinners deserve death.

    F: My son has deserved a lot of things throughout the years and I certainly have disciplined him. Remember when he was 16 and got in trouble with the law? I could have gone to the judge and had his punishment removed or reduced. But I didn’t because I wanted him to feel the pain and perhaps learn from it.

    C: Right.

    F: But this is different. You are telling me that God could enable my son to choose Him and purposely doesn’t? And this is NOT so that he can “learn” something since it is permanent and eternal? He basically created him to condemn him?

    C: Yes.

    F: God chose some of my family but purposely did not enable others in my family, knowing that they would— due to not being enabled — reject Him?

    C: Sinners deserve death.

    F: But God could have just as easily enabled him?

    C: Yes.

    F: I would give my life for my son. So I would like God to choose him and leave me!

    C: It doesnt work that way. God, for His own hidden purposes, and for His glory, chooses (enables) some and rejects (passes over) others.

    F: Yuk! That is terrible! Why would I want to spend eternity with a God who purposely, before time, rejected my son, and also my father and mother?

    C: Be happy you are saved.

    1. Foh writes: “F: Yuk! That is terrible! Why would I want to spend eternity with a God who purposely, before time, rejected my son, and also my father and mother?”

      My Reactions to that post:

      1. No one among humans can manipulate Salvation and can even dictate God as to whom He is going to save. This is untenable. Jesus said: “I laid down My life to the Sheep” – John 10:11, 15. (no one can come to the Son except when the Father decides to draw then to the Son)
      It would be foolish to think and assume that, the anti-christ-Pope of the RC, false prophets, false deities, magicians of Pharaoh, Judas Iscariot, Cult leaders, etc. will include to the sheep being taken care of by Christ, the good Shepherd)

      2. It is the view which believes on: “Salvation can be lost by man himself” – This is denied by the Calvinists. My stand position is: Nothing can be lost because there was nothing Salvation that has been possessed at all.

      3. It is a “Myth” that you can add to your camp and call it as your : “decoy salvation”

      1. FOH
        Conveys a story of a father talking with a Calvinist
        Father: Yuk! That is terrible! Why would I want to spend eternity with a God who purposely, before time, rejected my son, and also my father and mother?”

        jtleosala
        No one among humans can manipulate Salvation and can even dictate God as to whom He is going to save.

        br.d
        This is a classic Calvinist straw-man argument.
        There is no mention here at all about man manipulating or dictating anything – the father is making an ethical statement.

        jtleosala
        John 10:11, 15. (no one can come to the Son except when the Father decides to draw then to the Son)

        br.d
        Man often reads scripture through the lens of man made philosophies.

        jtleosala
        It would be foolish to think and assume that, the anti-christ-Pope of the RC, false prophets, false deities, magicians of Pharaoh, Judas Iscariot, Cult leaders, etc. will include to the sheep being taken care of by Christ, the good Shepherd)

        br.d
        This statement is even FALSE in Calvinism!
        Calvin’s god does not base his decisions on who he elects – based upon ANYTHING having to do with the creature – good or bad.
        Why would a Calvinist misrepresent his own doctrine?

        jtleosala
        Salvation can be lost by man himself” – This is denied by the Calvinists.

        br.d
        Again this has absolutely NOTHING to do with the context – the father in this situation is comparing Calvin’s god with what he understand as divine love. Although it is not mentioned in this situation – since the father is a Christian – we might consider his understanding of love – is what he finds in scripture.

        jtleosala
        My stand position is: Nothing can be lost because there was nothing Salvation that has been possessed at all.

        brd.
        Calvin’s god sets all of the houses in the world on fire.
        He then rescues a few – leaving the rest to burn.

        To defend himself – he sends out his Calvinist lawyer with the following argument:
        Calvin’s god wasn’t obligated to put out any fires because none of the homes deserved to be rescued.

        The Calvinist lawyer reveals his ethics!

        jtleosala
        3. It is a “Myth” that you can add to your camp and call it as your : “decoy salvation”

        br.d
        This statement is a manifestation of abject double-mindedness

        If a person has a “decoy salvation”
        Calvin’s god at the foundation of the world renders-certain what every person will be and do.
        Since the person didn’t exist at that point – the person had absolutely no choice in the matter.

        The Calvinist needs to make up his mind – either Calvin’s god renders-certain everything or not.
        And If he does – then rendered-certain means the event is UNPREVENTABLE by the force of divine decree.
        And who is man that he can change what Calvin’s god has rendered-certain?

        Why are Calvinists so double-minded?
        Perhaps it is built into their doctrine?

    2. A true story of a Father who desires his son’s salvation talking with a Calvinist about it

      Calvinist:
      Well ***I CANNOT SAY*** for sure if your son is chosen.
      He will come to Christ ***IF*** that is God’s desire.
      God made those decisions before time began and it is indeed ***POSSIBLE*** that your son was not chosen.

      Father:
      You mean, God chose my wife, me, and the three girls but did not chose my son….God enabled you, me, my wife, my girls..but not my son?

      Calvinist:
      By all ***APPEARANCES***.

      br.d
      This is what I mean when I say that NO Calvinist has any ABSOLUTE ASSURANCE OF SALVATION

      Calvin’s god spoke his EXPRESSED WILL to Adam
      Decieving Adam into believing his EXPRESSED WILL was his ONLY WILL for Adam.
      Calvin’s god’s SECREAT WILL was the exact OPPOSITE of what he EXPRESSED to Adam.

      Therefore:
      The Calvnist who reads the EXPRESSED WILL within scripture – is today in Adam’s very same sitation.

      The scripture gives the Calvnist NO ASSURANCE of salvation.
      Because Calvin’s god’s SECRET WILL for the Calvnist may be the OPPOSITE of what the Calvnist reads in scripture.

  24. Daily reading in Ezekeil 44.

    9 “So this is what the Sovereign Lord says: No foreigners, including those who live among the people of Israel, will enter my sanctuary if they have not been circumcised and have not surrendered themselves to the Lord.”
    ——

    [Here God is placing conditions on them being allowed into the sanctuary. You could actually become part of the “chosen people” if you met certain conditions. Need a special faith-dose for this? Nah, just trust and obey.]

    10 “And the men of the tribe of Levi who abandoned me when Israel strayed away from me to worship idols must bear the consequences of their unfaithfulness. 11 They may still be Temple guards and gatekeepers, and they may slaughter the animals brought for burnt offerings and be present to help the people. 12 But they encouraged my people to worship idols, causing Israel to fall into deep sin. So I have taken a solemn oath that they must bear the consequences for their sins, says the Sovereign Lord. 13 They may not approach me to minister as priests. They may not touch any of my holy things or the holy offerings, for they must bear the shame of all the detestable sins they have committed. 14 They are to serve as the Temple caretakers, taking charge of the maintenance work and performing general duties.”
    ————-

    [Here we see that our actions have circumstances. God did not WANT them to do what they did, but He can deal with it. He did not PLAN for them to sin did He? Doesnt sound like it. Calvinism insists that He decreed that these priests sin and now He can punish them. That Calvinistic-Reformed-Determinist-Fatalist-Qadr idea is brought to the text.]

    15 “However, the Levitical priests of the family of Zadok continued to minister faithfully in the Temple when Israel abandoned me for idols. These men will serve as my ministers. They will stand in my presence and offer the fat and blood of the sacrifices, says the Sovereign Lord. 16 They alone will enter my sanctuary and approach my table to serve me. They will fulfill all my requirements.”
    ————

    [Here we see that the family of Zadok made wise decisions (met the conditions of God) so they will get to continue in His service. God did not make the sinners sin or the faithful be faithful. Man’s actions matter and can change the direction of a country.]

    1. FOH writes, “You could actually become part of the “chosen people” if you met certain conditions. Need a special faith-dose for this? Nah, just trust and obey.]”

      Here, we see FOH promoting a works-based salvation where Calvinists promote a faith-based salvation.

      1. rhutchin
        Here, we see FOH promoting a works-based salvation where Calvinists promote a faith-based salvation.

        br.d
        Perfect timing! See what I mean FOH – Calvinism’s library of straw-men – which which they hope they can manipulate simple minded people.
        I vain is the net spread in the sight of any bird.

      2. Yes br.d ….That silly response was right on cue!

        I mentioned that people in the OT became part of the “chosen people” (think of Ruth and Rahab) by meeting God’s conditions, and we get some straw-man, unconnected comment that I am preaching works-based salvation. It is so unrelated, tiring, and unbiblical!

      3. FOH writes, “I mentioned that people in the OT became part of the “chosen people” (think of Ruth and Rahab) by meeting God’s conditions, and we get some straw-man, unconnected comment that I am preaching works-based salvation.”

        Then, we read in Hebrews 11
        11 By faith Abraham, even though he was past age–and Sarah herself was barren–was enabled to become a father because he considered him faithful who had made the promise.
        12 And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore.
        13 All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth.
        14 People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own.
        15 If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return.
        16 Instead, they were longing for a better country–a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.

        FOH had written, “You could actually become part of the “chosen people” if you met certain conditions. Need a special faith-dose for this? Nah, just trust and obey.” Hebrews 11 tells us that it is all about faith.

        In Romans 9, Paul writes, “For not all who are descended from Israel are Israel. Nor because they are his descendants are they all Abraham’s children. On the contrary, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.” In other words, it is not the natural children who are God’s children, but it is the children of the promise who are regarded as Abraham’s offspring.” By “children of promise” Paul means “children of faith.”

        Maybe FOH should not make disparaging comments about faith.

  25. Daily reading in Proverbs 28:8-10

    9 God detests the prayers
    of a person who ignores the law.
    ————-

    [Here we see that God detests some things we do. He decreed us to do them, then detests them? How stupid!

    What we learn? Dont ignore the law (your choice). And if you stop ignoring the law, God wont detest your prayers. What we do can influence God. Doesnt make us “stronger than God.” It’s just the way He set it up.]

  26. Daily Bible reading gets me to 1 Peter 2-3.

    2: 15 “It is God’s will that your honorable lives should silence those ignorant people who make foolish accusations against you.”
    ————–

    We are told by Calvinists that EVERYTHING that happens is God’s will. Here we see that Peter says it is God’s will that their “honorable lives should silence those ignorant people….”

    A simple reader of the text would understand that living honorably is God’s will. But he would never understand from this that the “foolish accusations from ignorant people” are God’s will.

    Now… a Calvinist response to this would be “God knew they would have foolish accusations and therefore it was His will.”

    But if everything that happens is God’s will then why spend so much time (a lot of time!) encouraging us to live make wise choices, be faithful, (and here) live honorably? I mean…. even if we dont live honorably…. we are still doing God’s will, right Calvinists?

    Even if we are a “chosen” person that has been regenerated, then given faith, then irresistibly made to “freely chose” Christ and made to persevere as a chosen one—- we could still just “sin boldly” and claim that it was God’s will too right? Calvinist pastor has an affair with 3 women in his church…. God’s will, right?

    From a Calvinist everything-is-God’s-will perspective, I dont see the point in all these hundreds of Scriptures that urge us to choose to make wise decisions and live honorable lives.

    1. Wonderful post FOH!

      If one reads John Calvin’s writings – one will discover he MUST teach people HOW TO THINK – because the doctrine is contradictory.

      We call the method: *AS-IF* THINKING

      EXAMPLE:

      Calvin’s god:
      Determines/wills/decrees/renders-certain – “Everything in every part”
      AS-IF – “Nothing is determined in any part”

      This AS-IF THINKING is exactly what you are seeing in Calvinist statements.

      Language is the outward expression – of how the brain thinks.
      This is why Calvinists are so double-minded – and why Calvinist language is so full of double-speak.

      This is why – for them – verses in scripture require a special interpreter.
      To be able to decipher the “so called” REAL meanings within the text that the NORMAL reader doesn’t see.

  27. More in 1 Peter 2

    2:19 For God is pleased when, conscious of his will, you patiently endure unjust treatment. 20 Of course, you get no credit for being patient if you are beaten for doing wrong. But if you suffer for doing good and endure it patiently, God is pleased with you.
    ————-

    Here Peter tells us twice that we can please God. Remember, Calvinists teach the “impassibility of God” : He cannot be pleased, saddened, joyful, angered.

    Here Peter tells us that we “get credit” for being patient (even Calvin’s ESV says that). What can that mean?

    Here Peter tells us that people “can do wrong” and might deserve to be punished. You mean they disobey God and His will… or are they doing God’s will even when they are doing wrong?

    Calvinist friends, can we please God with our honorable actions?

    Can we displease Him?

    1. The bible believer reads scripture and lets it say what it says – no more – no less
      Calvinism is a tradition of interpretation – which his RELIANT upon teaching people what scripture says.

      The Catholics have their priestly mediator – between man and the remission of sins.
      The Calvinists have their priestly mediator – between man and scripture.

      1. True,
        By far the overall message of the Bible is the Good News that God loves all and makes His redemption plan available to all.

        Now…. if you find a few verses, interpret them a certain way…. you can declare that man is “too-dead” and must be made alive, given faith, so he can then be “made alive in Christ.”

        I cannot get any of the Calvinists here to stop playing “gotcha” games with me.

        When are we “made alive in Christ”?

        We all believe that we are.

        Calvinists say that we must be “made alive” so that we can be given faith and then be open to spiritual things. But the “made alive in Christ” that we see in the word is at salvation (not at the Calvinistic act that must precede all else…. awaken a dead man, give him faith so he can irresistibly believe).

        So again… Calvin’s order is made alive, given faith, irresistibly acting on the faith, salvation (which is being “made alive” “buried with” Christ) .

        That’s two times “made alive in Christ.”

        Furthermore, I have given multiple examples of people reading/ listening to God’s word for years before coming to Christ.

        According to Calvinism they have to be regenerated before they can “seek” God in any way.

        For my friend that took 8 years…. the Calvinist theory is that he was a cannot-seek, God-hater, who was “too-dead” for all those 8 years. He somehow managed to read the Bible with believers for 8 years, then accepted Christ. Was he regenerated all those 8 years? Or was he “too-dead” while doing a very “seeking” thing?

        No Calvinist here can explain that to me.

      2. FOH
        I cannot get any of the Calvinists here to stop playing “gotcha” games with me.

        br.d
        I know this sounds a little unkind – but I’ve learned over time that Calvinists are taught argument strategies.
        James White plays the exact same games.
        Always position yourself in the seat of Moses.

        And it is clear here – Calvinist can’t acknowledge their tradition of interpretation is as fallible as any other by.
        They’re not even honest enough to acknowledge it as a tradition.
        Because if they did it would force them to lose their “Moses seat”.

        Of course they don’t assert themselves to be infallible – no one would take them seriously if they did.
        But you see the way they posture.
        That is nothing more than a con-game.
        And they cannot stop using it because they’ve been taught it as a strategy that works.

        FOH – they don’t have the capacity for anything else!
        They are locked into where they are.

      3. FOH asks, “When are we “made alive in Christ”?”

        Epheisans 2, “being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places, in Christ Jesus, in order that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.’

        According to this, God made a person alive in Christ while he was still dead in sin. At this point, Paul exclaims – “By grace are you saved.” Thus, you and the Calvinist seem to agree that it occurs at salvation.

        Then, “According to Calvinism they have to be regenerated before they can “seek” God in any way. ”

        This following John 3, where Jesus explains that one cannot see or renter the kingdom of Heaven (or be saved according to Calvinism) unless one is born again (regenerated). A person would not seek that which he cannot see. This agrees with Paul’s argument in Romans 3, “there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God.” A person who does not see the kingdom does not understand; thus, he does not seek God.

        As to the person who read the Bible for eight years, one must wonder what he was doing for most of that time. The message is so simple that a child can understand it. He must have grasped the basic message right off the bat – he was a sinner who needed salvation and he had to repent and believe the gospel. He then spend eight years rejecting that message. So, what changed after eight years? Obviously, he changed. So, why then and not earlier – because God did not get involved until the end (is one answer).

      4. We often hear Calvinists quote (misquote) Romans 3:11 saying no one can seek God ever (of course in context, Paul is not saying what Calvinists make him say…. but what’s new? I mean, if he was saying what they make him say, we would ALL –every person— have venom on our lips!)

        So…. back to the many people I have known over the years that have taken many months or years to come to Christ. What are they doing all those years? Being God-haters? Being not-really-seeking-only-looking-like-they-are-seeking people?

        We are told the message is so simple people should accept it right away. These are naive and simple remarks. A lack of experience in evangelism or on the mission field leads to these kinds of remarks. Too much theologizing and not enough living.

        Many people over the years have been hostile to me when I have presented the gospel. Others answer: “Interesting. I have been wondering if there is a God and looking for answers in life.” Many of these people have accepted (been anxious) to study the Bible with me. Some of them wander off after months or years… others keep studying / reading/ listening understanding. As Paul says it the want to be “persuaded” of the truth. So we did what Paul says…. we “reasoned with them.” And…as Paul says …. “they were convinced.”

        So…. trite and canned answers aside, what exactly were they doing all those months?

        Diversionary answers will be things like “they should have understood right away it is so simple.” But again that is a point of view from ignorance. Many people coming to Christ come from different backgrounds and world views: Islam, Buddhism, Animism, etc… so not so “simple” for them. But they stick with it.

        Again….. the question: what are they doing all those months and years? Hating God? Why read His word? They are just blind, too-dead, God-haters for months and months of Bible study and then POOF they get regenerated? Really? Then why does Paul say persuaded, reasoned with, convinced?

        Many times at the baptism I hear the testimonies (like this) of these people: “I was looking for answers. I tried the JWs, the Mormons, the XYZ. Then I got a Bible and started reading it and asked a friend at work about a Bible study he goes to. Then, after a year of studying, I repented and came to Christ for salvation.”

        Simple question to Calvinist (expect no answer or a non-answer): When was this person regenerated?

        The obvious Calvinist answer will be … at the moment JUST prior to faith, then justification (Sproul says they are instantaneous… and I mean, if Sproul says it……) Fine. Good Calvinist answer.

        Next question: what was that person doing all the time previously? Seeking? Looking? Tsk, tsk… can’t have that! Impossible in Calvinism to be ANYTHING but a blind, dead, God-hater until the moment of regeneration.

        So two years of blind, dead, God-hating, not-seeking-Bible-reading …. then poof, regeneration…. THEN you can be given faith…. you tricky little God-hater acting like you are seeking!!! You little God-hater…. trying to act like you want answers for your life and pretending to read the Bible and ask questions of other believers….. you ought to know better. You can’t do any of that until you are regenerated (then you can seek).

        Please no silly answers like “people have all kinds of selfish reason for XYZ.” Again that would be from ignorance. Having known people who were searching for answers/ looking for God …. then, were willing to study the Bible….. and, did it earnestly for months and years…. then came to real faith in Christ and baptism… I will not see any sense to the explanation that they were blind, too-dead, God-haters for two years till they were given faith.

        You can theologize about that all you want…. but it only means you are not out sharing the Good News in the real world.

      5. FOH writes, “We often hear Calvinists quote (misquote) Romans 3:11 saying no one can seek God ever…”

        Sleeping in class again. This is wrong. Calvinist take Romans11 as it is – No one seeks God. It is from John 6 the Calvinists conclude that no one CAN seek God – Jesus said, “…no one can come to Me, unless it has been granted him from the Father.” br.d claims that this means something other than what it says, but he can’t seem to explain what that could be.

        Then, “We are told the message is so simple people should accept it right away. These are naive and simple remarks.”

        People would accept it right away if they had the free will that you claim they have. That people do not accept salvation right away only demonstrates the extent to which they are enslaved to sin.

  28. Now in 1 Peter 3

    1 “In the same way, you wives must accept the authority of your husbands. Then, even if some refuse to obey the Good News, your godly lives will speak to them without any words. They will be won over 2 by observing your pure and reverent lives.”
    ———

    Here Peter tells us that wives need to submit to unbelieving husbands. What does it mean, “they will be won over”?

    Won over to what—- good works?

    Won over to the Good News? Wives can have an impact on that by their behavior? We are told by Calvinists that this is completely out of man/ woman’s hands, right? Here Peter makes it sound like we can make a difference in what a person believes and does.

    No wonder it is so hard to “find Calvinism” in the Scripture!!!

    I admit, if you filter all the Word through a Calvinist interpretation of 40-50 verses you can build a Reformed theology….. but what is the point of all these verses?

    Wives can “win over” their husbands by their godly behavior!!! Whoo Hoo!! That’s Good News!

    ps.
    Calvinist version: Wives, it is irrelevant what you do. Your husband was/ was not chosen before time…. we just want to make you think you have something to do with it.

  29. Today’s Proverb, 28:12-13:

    12 When the godly succeed, everyone is glad.
    When the wicked take charge, people go into hiding.

    13 People who conceal their sins will not prosper,
    but if they confess and turn from them, they will receive mercy.
    —————

    Sounds like there are “godly” that make people happy and “bad guys” that make people hide. Are they both equally God’s will?

    Concealing and confessing your sin— are they both equally God’s will?

    Calvinist friends: Does He prefer that we conceal or confess our sins? Is that choice ours? If we conceal our sins are we still doing the will of God?

  30. Daily reading gets me to Proverbs 28: 15-16.

    16 A ruler with no understanding will oppress his people,
    but one who hates corruption will have a long life.
    ————-

    Who were these proverbs written for? All peoples or just the “chosen people” of Israel?

    If these proverbs are given as a suggested pattern of living for all readers (non “chosen people,” non believers) then we can see that it is possible to them to “hate corruption”.

    So, Calvinist friends…. is the proverb telling rulers to “hate corruption” (and consequently have a long life)? If so…. it is therefore possible.

    Or are you Calvinists telling us that this proverb is telling us ….. “Be a good ruler and hate corruption and have a long life, but we know that none of you are able to do that unless divinely regenerated and given-faith, and made to do it irresistibly.” ?

    If that is the case…. again… what is the point of the proverb exactly?

    1. FOH
      If that is the case…. again… what is the point of the proverb exactly?

      br.d
      Great point!
      Calvinism is full of the fallacy of FALSE ATTRIBUTION

      Calvin’s god renders-certain person A do X INFALLIBLY, UNCHANGEABLY, UNPREVENTABLY, and UNRESTRAINABLY.
      That is Calvin’s very doctrine

      And yet the Calvinist doesn’t have eyes to see or ears to hear concerning it.
      I guess this could happen if certain parts of the brain are turned on and off.

      Perhaps Calvin’s god is playing a game of whack-a-mole inside there! :-]

      https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQ2YLje9rjsQHIJwnc3fr2T3tINgkmzQcaxHkx3ji9sqo1kOXn-

  31. I am grappling with these issues. In my opinion it doesn’t matter whether you are a Calvinist to believe that God is omniscient. If we believe that we have to believe he knows what the outcome of all of all events. You don’t have to be a Calvinist therefore to believe that God knew that the fall of man would occur. If we accept that then we also know that in creating man God knew that man could not approach him and “would surely die” ie. die spiritually. The consequence of this is hell. So even a non-Calvinist should have to grapple with the fact that some people are destined to go to hell even if Jesus came to provide a path back to God.

    Because God is outside time and eternal he knows who will eventually repent and who will not. I’m not sure that means we have no free will but it does mean we are predestined to a certain outcome because God can look at it from an ex-post perspective ie. after the event.

    Anyway I am about to go to a reformed Church because the church I attend has become liberal. Despite this I fail to see how even a liberal church can deny what I said above and after reading a lot of this incredibly long thread some people seem to have trouble with the fact that hell exists and God can do that. You shouldn’t need to be a Calvinist to believe in hell though and the consequence of that is that some people are destined to go there – even if you have to look at it on a macro rather than individual level it’s true.

    I’m not sure if God who knows the outcome of our lives before we are born controls our actions though. Can’t it just be that he knows what our actions will be from an after the event (or outside time) perspective.

    1. Hi – WorkingTI. I think believing God is inside and “outside of creation” is one thing, but we need not believe the future is a created place that already exists or that in God’s mind the future is already set to work out only one way.

      The Scripture reads differently.

    2. Thank you WorkingThroughIt for your post.

      Yes all Christians will agree with you that they see God as omniscient.
      Calvinism is unique however in the *WAY* divine omniscience occurs.

      Calvinism is committed to what is called UNIVERSAL DIVINE CAUSAL DETERMINISM.
      This is also called THEOLOGICAL DETERMINISM

      See this article here for example:
      https://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/determinism-theological

      Since Calvinism is committed to Theological Determinism – they have a world-view in which EVERYTHING WITHOUT EXCEPTION
      is determined to INFALLIBLY occur. ALL things are said to be FIXED in the past and RENDERED-CERTAIN by the THEOS.

      So Adam’s every neurological impulse was determined before Adam was born.
      And that goes for yours as well.
      That is in fact the way the THEOS in Calvinism has knowledge of what will occur in the future.
      He determines everything to INFALLIBLY occur.

      Other Christian belief systems not predicated on THEOLOGICAL DETERMINISM allow for God to “Permit” events to occur without determining them to INFALLIBLY occur.

      Calvinists argue that that WAY of acquiring knowledge is impossible.
      Formulations include the FREE WILL DEFENSE by Dr. Alvin Plantinga.
      And you will find arguments by Dr. William Lane Craig also
      There is also a position called OPEN THEISM.

      It would be my prayer – if your interest grows – you will search the matter out – and come to your own conclusion.

      However, I must warn you that Calvinists are very aggressive about this subject and they learn a host of argumentation tactics which are designed to manipulative and corral people into their position. So if you engage in dialog with them you should not be surprised if you find yourself coming in contact with a lack of intellectual honesty or statements containing word trickery.

      Fair warning!
      Blessings!
      br.d

      1. br.d writes, “Other Christian belief systems not predicated on THEOLOGICAL DETERMINISM allow for God to “Permit” events to occur without determining them to INFALLIBLY occur….However, I must warn you that Calvinists are very aggressive about this subject and they learn a host of argumentation tactics which are designed to manipulative and corral people into their position.”

        The problem here is that non-Calvinists don’t explain how God can ““Permit” events to occur without determining them to INFALLIBLY occur.” The normal explanation is, “It’s a mystery.” Calvinists can be aggressive in pushing people to examine what they believe and why – appeals to mystery and the inability to explain key terms or support alternatives don’t impress Calvinists.

        You are correct to think that God has some awareness of the future, even if Brian were correct and God does not know specifics, and God does know that some people will end up in hell absent His intervention to prevent that outcome.

      2. rhutchin
        The problem here is that non-Calvinists don’t explain how God can ““Permit” events to occur without determining them to INFALLIBLY occur.”

        br.d
        I agree.
        But the Calvinist is in an even worse situation – because all of his explanations require the contortion of rational reasoning.
        He has to deceive people by using misleading language tricks – whenever they start to scrutinize his explanations.
        His explanations require him to become an expert at misleading people – hidings – obfuscations – equivocations are his game.
        His belief system forces him to live in a world of double-speak.

        Wikepedia – Augustine Neoplatonism and Christianity
        Neoplatonism was a major influence on Christian theology throughout Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages in the West. This was due to St. Augustine of Hippo,

        Kam-lun E. Lee – Augustine, Manichaeism and the Good
        The Manichaean explanation for the cause of personal evil is relatively straightforward. One cannot escape from moral evil because there is a metaphysical evil principle at work behind the soul. In other words, one sins involuntarily. Considered cosmologically, the human soul is thrown into the predicament of constant struggle with evil not by its own choice but by the determination of an external factor. (mor. II.xii.25; Faus XX.17, XXII.22; Fort. 7; nat. bon. xlii).” (pp.208-209)

        Calvin would have been better off – if he had not swallowed the camel whole.

        Jesus says: A good tree does not bear bad fruit.

      3. br.d writes, “But the Calvinist is in an even worse situation – because all of his explanations require the contortion of rational reasoning.
        He has to deceive people by using misleading language tricks – whenever they start to scrutinize his explanations.
        His explanations require him to become an expert at misleading people – hidings – obfuscations – equivocations are his game.
        His belief system forces him to live in a world of double-speak.”

        This is nonsense. Calvinists cite the story of Joseph and his brothers, “as for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive.” the Assyrians in Isaiah 10, “Woe to Assyria, the rod of My anger And the staff in whose hands is My indignation, I send it against a godless nation And commission it against the people of My fury To capture booty and to seize plunder,…Yet it does not so intend Nor does it plan so in its heart, But rather it is its purpose to destroy, And to cut off many nations.” and the Babylonians in Jeremiah 25, “thus says the LORD of hosts, ‘Because you have not obeyed My words,
        9 behold, I will send and take all the families of the north,’ declares the LORD, ‘and I will send to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, My servant, and will bring them against this land, and against its inhabitants, and against all these nations round about; and I will utterly destroy them, and make them a horror, and a hissing, and an everlasting desolation…Then it will be when seventy years are completed I will punish the king of Babylon and that nation,’ declares the LORD, ‘for their iniquity, and the land of the Chaldeans; and I will make it an everlasting desolation.” and the Medes of Isaiah 13, “Behold, I am going to stir up the Medes against [Babylon],” It is clear to the Calvinist that God exercises control over His creation. As br.d is fond of saying, “every neurological impulse was determined before Adam was born.” Nothing happens except by God’s command – even that which God is said to “permit.” This is the conclusion of God being sovereign (and omnipotent) along with His omniscience.

      4. br.d writes, “But the Calvinist is in an even worse situation – because all of his explanations require the contortion of rational reasoning.
        He has to deceive people by using misleading language tricks – whenever they start to scrutinize his explanations.
        His explanations require him to become an expert at misleading people – hidings – obfuscations – equivocations are his game.
        His belief system forces him to live in a world of double-speak.”

        rhutchi
        This is nonsense…..Calvinism cites…..etc

        Br.d
        Every word in my statement above is absolutely correct down to the last point.

        But I failed to add the covert bible teachers and covert pastors who enter into the sheep-fold through the back door. And pastors who will not tell their congregations he is teaching Calvinism – for fear people will leave.

        Here at SOT101 You have a well established reputation for an expertise in subtle word strategies – and leading people around in endless circles if /when you can.

        Calvinism’s reputation is well established.
        In all of Protestantism – Calvinism always wins first-prize for being the most subtle beast in the field

        Dr. Jerry Walls “If it weren’t for Calvinism’s expertise in misleading rhetoric – it would lose credibility in two years.”

        Dr. William Lane Craig in various statements: “Sadly yet consistently, Calvinists fail to enunciate the radical distinctions in their belief system”

        Do not go into a church under a cloak of deception or dishonesty
        https://brnow.org/Opinions/Guest-Columns/July-2012/Is-there-a-Calvinist-agenda-to-reform-traditional

        Calvinist Dishonesty
        https://dorightchristians.wordpress.com/tag/calvinist-dishonesty/

        Victims of Soteriological Dishonesty
        https://sbcvoices.com/victims-of-soteriological-dishonesty/

        Dishonest Calvinists (?) and the call for integrity
        http://tomascol.com/dishonest-calvinists-and-the-call-for-integrity/

        Could Theological Dishonesty Have Contributed
        http://thewartburgwatch.com/2013/12/13/wwcnc-could-theological-dishonesty-have-contributed-to-the-downfall-at-countryside/

        Covert Calvinists
        https://www.nelsonprice.com/covert-calvinists/

      5. br.d writes, “But the Calvinist is in an even worse situation – because all of his explanations require the contortion of rational reasoning.
        He has to deceive people by using misleading language tricks – whenever they start to scrutinize his explanations.
        His explanations require him to become an expert at misleading people – hidings – obfuscations – equivocations are his game.
        His belief system forces him to live in a world of double-speak.”

        rhutchi
        This is nonsense…..Calvinism cites…..etc

        Br.d
        Every word in my statement above is absolutely correct down to the last point.

        But I failed to add the covert bible teachers and covert pastors who enter into the sheep-fold through the back door. And pastors who will not tell their congregations he is teaching Calvinism – for fear people will leave.

        Here at SOT101 You have a well established reputation for an expertise in subtle word strategies – and leading people around in endless circles if /when you can.

        Calvinism’s reputation is well established.
        In all of Protestantism – Calvinism always wins first-prize for being the most subtle beast in the field

        Dr. Jerry Walls “If it weren’t for Calvinism’s expertise in misleading rhetoric – it would lose credibility in two years.”

        Dr. William Lane Craig in various statements: “Sadly yet consistently, Calvinists fail to enunciate the radical distinctions in their belief system”

        Do not go into a church under a cloak of deception or dishonesty
        https://brnow.org/Opinions/Guest-Columns/July-2012/Is-there-a-Calvinist-agenda-to-reform-traditional

        The following are article titles on various Christian web-sites
        I can post the sites if needed

        Calvinist Dishonesty

        Victims of Soteriological Dishonesty

        Dishonest Calvinists (?) and the call for integrity

        Could Theological Dishonesty Have Contributed

        Covert Calvinists

      6. br.d writes, “Every word in my statement above is absolutely correct down to the last point.”

        In support, br.d cites an article by Les Puryear (w/ response by Ken Keathley) that has nothing to do with the opinion he stated. The other citations seem to be opinion pieces also but I didn’t look at all of them. How about citations that actually say something substantive. Or maybe, br.d could listen to his own citations and then tell us what he sees as the takeaway that supports his opinion and is not just another opinion.

      7. br.d
        I agree.
        But the Calvinist is in an even worse situation – because all of his explanations require the contortion of rational reasoning.
        He has to deceive people by using misleading language tricks – whenever they start to scrutinize his explanations.
        His explanations require him to become an expert at misleading people – hidings – obfuscations – equivocations are his game.
        His belief system forces him to live in a world of double-speak.

        rhutchin
        This is nonsense – Calvinists cite ……etc

        br.d
        Br.d
        Every word in my statement above is absolutely correct down to the last point.

        But I failed to add the covert bible teachers and covert pastors who enter into the sheep-fold through the back door. And pastors who will not tell their congregations he is teaching Calvinism – for fear people will leave.

        Here at SOT101 You have a well established reputation for an expertise in subtle word strategies – and leading people around in endless circles if /when you can.

        Calvinism’s reputation is well established.
        In all of Protestantism – Calvinism always wins first-prize for being the most subtle beast in the field

        Dr. Jerry Walls “If it weren’t for Calvinism’s expertise in misleading rhetoric – it would lose credibility in two years.”

        Dr. William Lane Craig in various statements: “Sadly yet consistently, Calvinists fail to enunciate the radical distinctions in their belief system”

        Do not go into a church under a cloak of deception or dishonesty
        https://brnow.org/Opinions/Guest-Columns/July-2012/Is-there-a-Calvinist-agenda-to-reform-traditional

        The following are article titles on various Christian web-sites
        I can post the sites if needed

        Calvinist Dishonesty

        Victims of Soteriological Dishonesty

        Dishonest Calvinists (?) and the call for integrity

        Could Theological Dishonesty Have Contributed

        Covert Calvinists

        rhutchin
        In support, br.d cites an article by Les Puryear (w/ response by Ken Keathley) that has nothing to do with the opinion he stated.

        br.d
        I’m happy to let the SOT101 readers go to the article ”
        Do not go into a church under a cloak of deception or dishonesty”

        I experienced an issue with at least one of the other web-links with the system here.
        But one can easily google them

        As I stated – everything in my original post above is absolutely correct.
        Calvinism’s reputation for dishonesty – and also for double-speak is very secure :-]

        Jesus says: A good tree does not bring forth bad fruit.

    3. WTI,
      I appreciate your post. Have a look around at some of the main posts by Leighton and the comments.

      Traditionally people avoided Calvinism by saying what you said, basically, God knows all the future, but that doesnt mean He made us do it. But Calvinists eat people alive that wander gently down that road. They will turn “making God great/glorious” to “making God omniscient” to “making God make all the decisions for everyone,” in a matter of minutes in an aggressive conversation. There is no wiggle room for them and no position that “gives God so much glory” for them.

      Come back here any time —especially if you are off to a Reformed church (there are other options beside Liberal and Reformed!).

  32. Daily reading gets me to 2 Peter.

    1:10 So, dear brothers and sisters, work hard to prove that you really are among those God has called and chosen. Do these things, and you will never fall away. 11 Then God will give you a grand entrance into the eternal Kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
    ————

    Here is a tender morsel that even in the Calvinist ESV does not read well for Calvinists. We have to “work hard” “to prove” that we are among the chosen. What difference can anything we do make (for Calvinists), thus another meaningless verse for them.

    But…wait…. there’s more…. If you do these things you will never fall away. Oh well, there’s that nasty “fall away” again.

    Then…. mind you …. “then God will give you a grand entrance into the eternal Kingdom.”

    Despite the aggressive, even angry sounding, declarations from Calvinists that man has nothing to do with it…. there are far more verses that say he does!

    Of course these are all just poo-pooed and explained away with a whisk of the mighty 40-verse filter wand…. but they remain in Scripture and are far more numerous than the key filter verses of Calvinists.

  33. More from 2 Peter 1.

    19 Because of that experience, we have even greater confidence in the message proclaimed by the prophets.
    ————–

    Here Peter makes a clear point that I have been making on these pages. “Because of that experience” —- as a result of things he saw and heard—- Peter can have greater confidence (faith) in the message of God. That is because he was “persuaded” and “convinced” (the words Paul uses).

    Otherwise…. by his own admission here…. his faith would not be as strong. So…. does that mean (per Calvinists) that God gave him a “weak faith”? Or is he exercising personal faith and it is strengthened by experiences (seeing Christ, seeing visions, healings, miracles, the Word of God)?

  34. Proverb for today. Let’s hear it from Calvin’s ESV:

    28:18 Whoever walks in integrity will be delivered,
    but he who is crooked in his ways will suddenly fall.
    ————

    What do we learn? Walk in integrity! Results: be delivered (that’s a condition again).

    Act crookedly… results: sudden fall.

    This is very act/react oriented. Not planned out ahead. Lots of choices to make. Make the right ones do well. Wrong ones…. not so much.

    Another of the thousands of verses that does NOT sound deterministic!

    1. In order to understand all those secret encrypted meanings – hidden within the text – which the preponderance of born-again believers cannot see – requires a special interpreter. Kind of like the “Da Vinci Code” .

      On top of that – the ENLIGHTENED ONE’S spend their time blaming blindness
      On those whom the ENLIGHTENED ONE’S god has RENDERED-CERTAIN blindness.
      A-IF the creature could be/do otherwise than what has been RENDERED-CERTAIN the creature be/do.

      Which simply shows the ENLIGHTENED ONE’S are themselves blind.

  35. Below is the statement of FOH, the Pelagian:

    “What do we learn? Walk in integrity! Results: be delivered (that’s a condition again).”

    ————- My Reaction is reflected below this line ————–

    He is really cuddling and promoting a man-made faith (FOH rejects God’s gift of faith to him, so he uses his own man-made faith) that is infected by sin. A kind of accessing salvation that is conditional. This is none sense and unbiblical, a contradiction of the grace of God.

    He said that the result for exercising his man-made faith is to be delivered. Delivered from what? from sin? and damnation? — This is nonsense. The atonement done by Jesus Christ on the cross is the one that will deliver His people not the man-made faith or even walking in integrity.

    If walking in integrity will deliver FOH, then he don’t need anymore Jesus Christ at all. To the rescue, Br D and his god will be so quick again to post his comments…

    1. jtleosala
      Below is the statement of FOH, the Pelagian:
      He is really cuddling and promoting a man-made faith

      br.d
      Calvinists cannot be believed simply because they are so double-minded.
      They assert as unquestionably TRUE – that Calvin’s god at the foundation of the world FIRST CONCEIVES and then RENDERS-CERTAIN everything – which obviously includes everything the creature will be and do.

      And then – making believe what they assert as unquestionably true IS FALSE!
      They go about railing against the very things Calvin’s god has rendered-certain.

      At what point did FOH stand at the foundation of the world RENDERING-CERTAIN anything?
      And what power does FOH have to NEGATE – what is RENDERED-CERTAIN by Calvin’s god?

      Calvinists and their bloodymindedness
      What person in their right mind would want to be afflicted with that mental condition? :-]

      1. I made a typo here
        This should read:

        Calvinists and their double-mindedness
        What person in their right mind would want to be afflicted with that mental condition? :-]

      2. You see… Br D and his god to the rescue of FOH, the Pelagian was so quick to type here his reply with typo errors… oh… boy… It has come to pass what was determined.

        br.d
        November 28, 2018 at 9:12 am
        I made a typo here
        This should read:
        Calvinists and their double-mindedness
        What person in their right mind would want to be afflicted with that mental condition? :-]

        ———– 000————

        The natural man refuses/rejects because this is his nature. Nothing disputes about this condition

      3. br.d
        Calvinists cannot be believed simply because they are so double-minded.
        They assert as unquestionably TRUE – that Calvin’s god at the foundation of the world FIRST CONCEIVES and then RENDERS-CERTAIN everything – which obviously includes everything the creature will be and do.

        And then – making believe what they assert as unquestionably true IS FALSE!
        They go about railing against the very things Calvin’s god has rendered-certain.

        At what point did FOH stand at the foundation of the world RENDERING-CERTAIN anything?
        And what power does FOH have to NEGATE – what is RENDERED-CERTAIN by Calvin’s god?

        Calvinists and their double-mindedness
        What person in their right mind would want to be afflicted with that mental condition? :-]

        jtleosala
        The natural man refuses/rejects because this is his nature. Nothing disputes about this condition

        br.d
        The children of this world are in their generation wiser than the “so called” children of light. Luke 16:8

        Anyone who asserts [A] is TRUE – and then asserts [A] is FALSE – and then rails against it – his wisdom is his own folly.

        Do not be excessively righteous and do not posture yourself as overly wise. Why should you ruin yourself?
        Ecclesiastes 7:16

        This wisdom is not that which comes down from above, but is earthly, natural,….. James 3:15

  36. My daily reading gets me to Daniel 5.

    22 “You are his successor, O Belshazzar, and you knew all this, yet you have not humbled yourself. 23 For you have proudly defied the Lord of heaven and have had these cups from his Temple brought before you. You and your nobles and your wives and concubines have been drinking wine from them while praising gods of silver, gold, bronze, iron, wood, and stone—gods that neither see nor hear nor know anything at all. But you have not honored the God who gives you the breath of life and controls your destiny! 24 So God has sent this hand to write this message.
    ———–

    Let’s let Daniel tell us a bit about God and how He created the world.

    He tell Belshazzar that he should have known better (knew it but did not humble himself like he should have).

    He did not honor the God who gives him breath (sounds like Daniel is saying that he could have chosen to do that, right?).

    Notice what Daniel says about God and sovereignty. He “gives you the breath of life and controls your destiny!”

    God gave breath and controls our final destiny, but no one would take away from reading this that God ALSO made/ decreed/ wanted/ willed/ desire/ planned/ ordained that Belshazzar do all the shameful things Daniel is mentioning!! Daniel is not much of a Calvinist!

    I just see Calvin standing next to Daniel, saying, “Bro, don’t get all wee-weed up at Belshi-baby…. he was just doing what God decreed him to do from before time. Relax, he is no more or less of a puppet than you and I are.”

    Nah…. I read that passage like Daniel is telling Belshazzar that he could have done differently…. but he didnt….”SO God has sent this hand to write this message.”

    1. FOH writes, “Notice what Daniel says about God and sovereignty. He “gives you the breath of life and controls your destiny!”

      Jeremiah spoke of Belshazzar’s grandfather of whom the Lord said”

      “I will send to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, My servant, and will bring them against this land, and against its inhabitants, and against all these nations round about; and I will utterly destroy them, and make them a horror, and a hissing, and an everlasting desolation.” Jeremiah 25.

      “I have given all these lands into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, My servant…” Jeremiah 27

      ““Behold, I am going to send and get Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, My servant, and I am going to set his throne right over these stones that I have hidden; and he will spread his canopy over them….” Jeremiah 43

      As br.d often reminds us, God “decreed every neurological impulse” of Nebuchadnezzar thereby controlling his destiny and using him as His servant.

      1. rhutchin
        As br.d often reminds us, God “decreed every neurological impulse” of Nebuchadnezzar thereby controlling his destiny and using him as His servant.

        br.d
        I would never use the term “servant” in this type of statement because its INFERS IN-determinism – which is obviously mutually excluded by determinism.

        using him as an “instrument” or “tool” would be more accurate.
        Or as Luther would say – a “slave”

        In Theological Determinism – people functioning as “servants” is misleading because “agency” is AMORPHOUS in determinism.
        Its always more intellectually honest to call people “instruments”, “tools”, or “slaves”

        And BTW:
        I would also emphasis RENDERED-CERTAIN (at the foundation of the world) every neurological impulse.
        Because this reveals the truth that the creature who does not exist at that point has no choice in the matter.
        All creaturely neurological impulses occur – UNPREVENTABLE, UNRESTRAINEABLE, and therefore IRRESISTIBLE

        This is where Calvinism’s term IRRESISTIBLE grace is derived.
        But the fact is – in Calvinism every creaturely function occurs as IRRESISTIBLE
        No creature can change, alter or resist what Calvin’s god as made IMMUTABLE

      2. br.d writes, “using him as an “instrument” or “tool” would be more accurate.
        Or as Luther would say – a “slave””

        So, apparently, this does not mean that God “decreed every neurological impulse” of Nebuchadnezzar. So, did God coerce Nebuchadnezzar to do His bidding. We are not told that – but are led to believe that Nebuchadnezzar is doing what those neurological impulses in his brain lead him to want, desire, and act upon. However, br.d says that God did not decree those neurological impulses because that doesn’t fit his philosophy. How did God transform Nebuchadnezzar into his servant or slave? be.d doesn’t tell us, so it must be a mystery.

      3. br.d
        “using him as an “instrument” or “tool” would be more accurate.
        Or as Luther would say – a “slave””

        rhutchin
        So, apparently, this does not mean that God “decreed every neurological impulse” of Nebuchadnezzar.

        br.d
        Where in the world of craziness do you come up with that logic? :-]

      4. rhutchin: “So, apparently, this DOES NOT mean that God “decreed every neurological impulse” of Nebuchadnezzar.”
        br.d: “Where in the world of craziness do you come up with that logic? :-]”

        OK. So, we have br.d agreeing that this DOES mean “God decreed every neurological impulse” of Nebuchadnezzar” and that explains how Nebuchadnezzar is said to be God’s slave.

        br.d says, “using him as an “instrument” or “tool” would be more accurate. Or as Luther would say – a “slave”” thus agreeing with Luther (ans Calvin agrees with Luther also). So,what is his issue? It is a mystery.

      5. br.d says, “using him as an “instrument” or “tool” would be more accurate.

        rhutchin
        Or as Luther would say – a “slave”” thus agreeing with Luther (ans Calvin agrees with Luther also). So,what is his issue? It is a mystery.

        br.d
        rhutchin – you seriously need to take an introductory course in critical thinking.
        You consistently conflate a statement that provides evidence of an observation – to assume the presenter of that evidence agrees with it – likes it – etc.

        Dr. Ravi Zacharias gives lectures all the time – in which he details various systems of thought – and his audience are smart enough to recognize – whether or not he is in agreement with that system of thought or not.

      6. br.d writes, “You consistently conflate a statement that provides evidence of an observation – to assume the presenter of that evidence agrees with it – likes it – etc.”

        “…evidence of an observation…” LOL! It’s actually evidence of a very active imagination on your part. You just can’t explain how you think a person can be a slave to God.

      7. rhutchin
        “…evidence of an observation…” LOL! It’s actually evidence of a very active imagination on your part. You just can’t explain how you think a person can be a slave to God.

        br.d
        You must be having one of those bad hair-days again. :-]

        In digital circuitry master devices and slave devices are common.
        The master device makes the decisions – the slave device may have some logical capacity.
        But whatever logical capacity the save device can exercise is itself determined by the master device.
        That just happens to be the model of functionality found in determinism.

  37. Daily reading gets me to 2 Peter 2.

    2 But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. (CSV, Calvin Standard Version, aka ESV)
    —–

    Okay what is Peter telling us? There are gonna be false prophets in the church. They are gonna teach heresies. They will deny the Master. Which Master? The one who bought them.

    Notice that Peter does not say “who bought His church.” No, he says “who bought them” …. meaning bought the very people who are false teachers, who are destructive heretics, who deny Christ, and will bring about swift destruction.

    How did He buy them?

    You can say He paid the price for them (but they are not believers) … or
    You can say He paid the price for them (and they are believers)…. either way you want to have Christ “buy them.”

    But whichever way you look at it, Christ bought them and yet they are still false teachers, destructive heretics, and Christ deny-ers.

    Peter is not much of a Calvinist!

    1. Below is part of FOH, the Pelagian statement:

      “But whichever way you look at it, Christ bought them and yet they are still false teachers, destructive heretics, and Christ deny-ers.”

      ———— Below this line is My response ————–

      1. FOH, the Pelagian is wrong again in saying Christ was the One who bought those false prophets and teachers. Jesus Christ will never offer His life to the False prophets and False Teachers for them to become a legitimate member of the flock that He takes care of.

      2. The audience of Peter in his book, he identified them in I Peter 1:1-2 i.e.: to the Pilgrims of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia. The elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father in sanctification of the Spirit…”

      3. God the Father will not include those False prophets and False Teachers among the elect. His instruction in the OT for those False Prophets is very clear. They must be stoned to death and never be given a chance to survive.

      4. God the father will never include the names of those false prophets and teachers in the Book of Life before the foundation of the world. Rev. 17:8 and Rev. 13:8

      4. The task for FOH, the Pelagian now is to determine Who is that lord that bought them according to the verse. Br. D and his god might say again and hurld this to us. but it will never work it will always back fire to him and his god.

      FOH, the Pelagian said: “Peter is not much of a Calvinist!” = but it cannot be denied by FOH, the Pelagian that Peter believes in Election according to the foreknowledge of God the Father. – Read what he wrote in I Peter 1:2, yet FOH, the Pelagian denies this.

      1. 2 Peter 2
        But there WERE (past tense) false prophets also among the people
        even as there SHALL BE (future tense) false teachers among you
        who privily SHALL (future tense) bring in damnable heresies
        even denying the δεσπότην LORD that bought them
        and bring upon themselves swift destruction.

        2 Peter 2 – Expositor’s Greek Commentary
        If the ordinary use of δεσπότης (master) in early Christian writers is followed here, viz., as referring to God, ἀγοράζω would also be used of God, who redeemed Israel out of Egypt (2 Samuel 7:23). The reference here, however, is to Christ (cf. Mayor, p. 17.). The N.T. use of ἀγορ. is illustrated in 1 Corinthians 6:20, where reference might be to God; but in 2 Samuel 7:23 reference is clearly to Christ. So in Revelation 5:9. Cf. our Lord’s words in Mark 10:45, about “giving his life a ransom” and Jude 2 Peter 2:4.

        2 Peter 2 Clarke’s Commentary
        Denying the Lord that bought them – It is not certain whether God the Father be intended here, or our Lord Jesus Christ; for God is said to have purchased the Israelites, Exodus 15:16, and to be the Father that had bought them, Deuteronomy 32:6, and the words may refer to these or such like passages; or they may point out Jesus Christ, who had bought them with his blood; and the heresies, or dangerous opinions, may mean such as opposed the Divinity of our Lord, or his meritorious and sacrificial death, or such opinions as bring upon those who hold them swift destruction. It seems, however, more natural to understand the Lord that bought them as applying to Christ, than otherwise; and if so, this is another proof, among many,
        1. That none can be saved but by Jesus Christ.
        2. That through their own wickedness some may perish for whom Christ died.

        Obviously there are Bible Scholars who interpret the reference to the LORD in 2 Peter 2 as either Father God or Jesus Christ.
        Obviously that interpretation is very damaging to Calvinism’s doctrines.
        So what else do we expect the Calvinist to do?

        But think for a minute:
        – Peter is obviously writing to followers of Christ – providing a projected warning.
        This is what happened in the past with God’s people – it is bound to repeat itself and happen again with you who are now God’s people.

        – Why would Peter care if a person denies a someone who is not Jesus?

        – Why would Peter even be writing about this to the church and warning them about it – unless that person is actually denying Christ?

        – If a person such as a false profit – is say deceived by doctrines of demons – why would that person deny a false Jesus rather than the True Christ? A house divided against itself cannot stand.

        I think the text is clear enough to warrant its NORMAL reading.
        Calvinism’s interpretation appears to be ILLOGICAL and FORCED on the text – simply because the text is damaging.

      2. br.d,
        Thanks for trying. It doesnt matter what you say or how many verses we quote ….. they will just say “this can never be!” and that basically settles it for them.

        They will just find some “chosen” word and say “See that proves it. Some are chosen!” So was chosen Israel and they produced some of the most wicked unbelieving people of all time.

      3. I know FOH
        I certainly don’t post anything for the benefit of our Calvinists.
        They have shown us repeatedly – their minds are solidly locked in tiny little cages.
        Jesus himself could try to tell them something – and they would call him a heretic without hesitation.

        For whatever its worth – I did it for the benefit of SOT101 readers.

        Most of the Calvinist posts are what critical thinkers call “TAUTOLOGY”
        Repeating something over and over
        Like Dorothy clicking her shoes and saying “There’s no place like home”
        Believing if one repeats it enough times it will come true. :-]

      4. br.d writes, “Obviously there are Bible Scholars who interpret the reference to the LORD in 2 Peter 2 as either Father God or Jesus Christ.
        Obviously that interpretation is very damaging to Calvinism’s doctrines.
        So what else do we expect the Calvinist to do?”

        Calvin writes, “Even denying the Lord that bought them. Though Christ may be denied in various ways,
        yet Peter, as I think, refers here to what is expressed by Jude, that is, when the grace of God
        is turned into lasciviousness; for Christ redeemed us, that he might have a people separated
        from all the pollutions of the world, and devoted to holiness and innocency. They, then,
        who throw off the bridle, and give themselves up to all kinds of licentiousness, are not unjustly
        said to deny Christ by whom they have been redeemed. Hence, that the doctrine of the
        gospel may remain whole and complete among us, let this be fixed in our minds, that we
        have been redeemed by Christ, that he may be the Lord of our life and of our death, and
        that our main object ought to be, to live to him and to die to him. He then says, that their
        swift destruction was at hand, lest others should be ensnared by them.”

        Those who are said to “deny the Lord that bought them” are those who are among the people thus they are ones who profess belief in, and submission to, Christ but do so falsely – they are false prophets. So, Christ said that the wheat and the tares would grow up together.

      5. rhutchin
        Those who are said to “deny the Lord that bought them” are those who are among the people thus they are ones who profess belief in, and submission to, Christ but do so falsely – they are false prophets. So, Christ said that the wheat and the tares would grow up together.

        br.d
        Deny the Lord who bought *THEM*

        Here grammatically – the word LORD is the subject.
        The word THEM is the object.

        THEM (the object)
        Deny the LORD (the subject)
        WHO (the subject) bought THEM (the object).

        Apply a little simple logic:
        If Calvin’s argument is correct then the text reads: “they deny the Lord WHOM THEY FALSELY PROFESS bought them”.

        Calvin – in order to make the text affirm DETERMINISM chooses to *ADD* language into the text that is not there.
        He doesn’t ADD that language physically into the verse – as in physically altering the words in the text.

        He ADDs language by a process called COGNITIVE ALTERATION

      6. He ADDs language by a process called COGNITIVE ALTERATION

        BTW: This alteration of the language of the text would also make the text read “the Lord who DID NOT BUY THEM”.

        We are faced with a decision about how we perceive the Holy Spirit’s ability to say what he means.
        We argue that the Holy Spirit said “who bought them”
        But he meant the opposite – “who did NOT BUY them”

        Certain hermeneutics end up inferring the Holy Spirit is not capable of making statements that say one thing but mean another.
        We come dangerously close to disrespecting not only scripture but God himself.

      7. br.d,
        You are twice the man I am dealing with silly answers of people parsing words that are not there etc.

        Anyone can see what “who bought them” means. It is only when that does not fit one’s predisposed suppositions that one then has to do linguistic and mental gymnastics. Whatever. The Bible is meant to be understood by the “plowman in the field” as Tyndale would say.

      8. FHO
        The Bible is meant to be understood by the “plowman in the field” as Tyndale would say.

        I Totally LOVE that statement from Tyndale!!
        I’ll bet the priest he told that to got just as hot under the color as our Calvineez here do! :-]

        N.T. Write calls Calvin a Catholic with a small ‘c’
        And I do see a number of similarities.
        There was a time when scripture was withheld from the masses.
        But that could not be maintained – even by murdering people.
        So what is the next best thing to do?
        Put a scripture verse in front of a person and condition that person’s mind to read what you want his mind do see.

        How would we know if a person’s mind has been conditioned that way?
        He will read a verse and ADD language into the verse that simply is not there.
        Even to the point of disrespecting the author of the text.

      9. br.d writes, “He ADDs language by a process called COGNITIVE ALTERATION”

        Again, we find br;d making a claim without being able to support the claim. Might br.d tell us what language was added??

      10. br.d writes, “He ADDs language by a process called COGNITIVE ALTERATION”

        rhutchin
        Again, we find br;d making a claim without being able to support the claim. Might br.d tell us what language was added??

        br.d
        I already posted it – but I would anticipate you don’t have eyes to see it.

        Its a total waste of time arguing interpretations of scripture verses with Jehovah Witnesses, Calvinists, etc.
        Due to the way they are taught to read scripture – they’re minds automatically subtract/add words to the text – making the meaning of the text affirm a specified dogma.

        Cognitive biases and the way we interpret the Bible. – Dr Aaron Chalmers
        Confirmation bias is defined as “the tendency to selectively search for or interpret information in a way that confirms one’s preconceptions or hypotheses” (Wilke and Mata, 2012: 532). As the quote indicates, people usually display this bias in one of two ways:
        1. They engage in a biased search for information – when people gather information, they tend to do so selectively, searching for evidence that is consistent with their current hypothesis.
        2. They engaged in biased interpretation of the evidence – people tend to interpret information in a way that supports their pre-existing position or beliefs. This is particularly noticeable when we look at the way people handle ambiguous information, which is characteristically taken to be supportive of the individual’s existing position, even though it could be used to argue for or against this.

      11. br.d writes, “I already posted it – but I would anticipate you don’t have eyes to see it.”

        That’s his story and he is sticking with it. All br.d did was post language that he imagines Calvinists added. He could not come up with language Calvinists really, actually added so he had to make it up.

      12. br.d writes, “I already posted it – but I would anticipate you don’t have eyes to see it.”

        rhutchin
        That’s his story and he is sticking with it. All br.d did was post language that he imagines Calvinists added. He could not come up with language Calvinists really, actually added so he had to make it up.

        br.d
        When you say “really actually” did you mean “physically” or did you mean via Cognitive Alteration.
        One of these would be pretty difficult to get away with.
        The other can be accomplished by standing over someones shoulders and telling him what the words in each verse mean.

      13. br.d writes, “Apply a little simple logic:
        If Calvin’s argument is correct then the text reads: “they deny the Lord WHOM THEY FALSELY PROFESS bought them”.”

        This is wrong. The text reads that “they deny the Lord that bought them.” Who are “they”? This refers to the false prophets, but this is what Peter calls them and not how they see themselves. They see themselves as disciples of Christ, but Peter describes them as denying the Lord who bought them and this is reflected in the destructive heresies that they promote – so they are not directly denying the Lord; instead this is the sense of the heresies being promoted. Peter is telling us that such people are not disciples of Christ but false prophets.

      14. rhutchin
        Peter is telling us that such people are not disciples of Christ but false prophets.

        br.d
        I think anyone with a little bit of common sense and elementary logic can read my previous post and compare it to that argument and see which one fails logically and infers the Holy Spirit forms statements that assert [A] while meaning [NOT A]

        Its a waste of my time dialoging with a Calvinist about this since they’re interest is protecting a sacred image – rather than a love for the truth.

      15. br.d writes, “I think anyone with a little bit of common sense and elementary logic can read my previous post…”

        Anyone out there up for this challenge? Can anyone explain what br.d is arguing?? Apparently, br.d has a complaint about Calvin’s explanation of 2 Peter and thinks that people can understand his complaint. I could not. Would someone else venture to say that they understand br.d and then explain what they think he is arguing?

      16. rhutchin
        Apparently, br.d has a complaint about Calvin’s explanation

        br.d
        Everything presented by a Calvinist is auto-magically superior truth.
        Every critical analysis of that”so called” explanation – is a “complaint”

        I think intelligent adults can see through that! :-]

      17. br.d writes, “Everything presented by a Calvinist is auto-magically superior truth.
        Every critical analysis of that”so called” explanation – is a “complaint””

        Perhaps you will provide some critical analysis down the road. I have not seen anything yet. However, if anyone can decipher what br.d submits as critical analysis, help us out.

      18. br.d
        “Everything presented by a Calvinist is auto-magically superior truth.
        Every critical analysis of that”so called” explanation – is a “complaint””

        rhutchin
        Perhaps you will provide some critical analysis down the road. I have not seen anything yet. However, if anyone can decipher what br.d submits as critical analysis, help us out.

        br.d
        Just look on the bright side!
        The world doesn’t need an all-knowing god as long as there’s a Calvinist in the room. :-]

  38. 2 Peter 2 again.

    18 For, speaking loud boasts of folly, they entice by sensual passions of the flesh those who are barely escaping from those who live in error. 19 They promise them freedom, but they themselves are slaves of corruption. For whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved. 20 For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. (CalvinSV version)
    ————–

    I cite this in the ESV, cuz even though it is a little King James-y sounding it shows that even the Calvinist version cannot hide what Peter is saying.

    The verses preceding these tell of a bad bunch of people…. false prophet types. Then 18 and 19 say some bad stuff about them. Then 20 says “they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ…”

    So it sounds like it is talking about people who have escape the world and know Christ… but “then if they are again entangled in them and overcome,” [meaning those who have escaped who do all that bad stuff he listed]

    “…the last state has become worse for them than the first.” [That’s King James-ese for “they are worse off than they were before!”]

    What?

    Before we know Christ we are pretty bad off. But here Peter says those who know Christ and then do all this are worse off than they were before knowing Christ.

    Peter—- didn’t you read your Boettner and vanTil?

  39. My daily reading takes me to 2 Peter 3.

    9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. (Calvinist SV translation)
    ———–

    God is patient toward us? Why? Why does He need to be “patient”? If He planned and determined everything, who is He waiting on? Himself? No…. He is patient toward us. Waiting on us.

    He does “not wish that any should perish.” He doesn’t want any to perish? Nope. But some just dont do what He wants. If He is determining all things why does Peter tell us He does not want any to perish? For Calvinist, He not only wants some to perish, He MAKES it happen.

    He wants all to “reach repentance.” Calvinists tell us that He makes His chosen repent, so what can Peter mean, “reach repentance”?

    Now, if you want to see some mental and linguistic gymnastics, just sidle on over to monergism.com and have a look at the explanation of this verse. The foundational principle for all who exegete this verse there is basically…. “Now dont take this to mean what it says” (Good start!).

    Then there is a long presuppositional explanation of God’s THREE will. All these years I thought He only had TWO wills!!

    “There is what is called the Sovereign Decretive Will….. This will is also known as the secret will of God…” (two names! great!)

    “Secondly, there is the Preceptive Will of God.”

    “Thirdly, we have God’s Will of Disposition.”

    Oh the poor plowman in the field! How will he ever make sense of the Bible without all the good filters that Calvinism wants him to use! Put the power of interpretation back in the hands of the clergy!!!! Saith the Calvinist.

    1. FOH writes, “Now, if you want to see some mental and linguistic gymnastics, just sidle on over to monergism.com and have a look at the explanation of this verse. The foundational principle for all who exegete this verse there is basically…. “Now dont take this to mean what it says” (Good start!).”

      As FOH knows very well – if his claim to have formerly been a Calvinist is to be believed – the Calvinist follows the rule of antecedents that says that works like “us” and “you” and “any” are defined prior to the use of those words. Thus, we can read this as, “9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any (of you) should perish, but that all (of you) should reach repentance.” To identify “you,” we then go back to v1-8, “This is now, beloved, the second letter I am writing to you…do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved…The Lord..is patient toward you,” Brian Wagner had an interesting take on this that one can read elsewhere but I don’t know exactly where..

      Then, Foh says, “Then there is a long presuppositional explanation of God’s THREE will. All these years I thought He only had TWO wills!!” This argument is made by those who want to avoid the Calvinist conclusion and soften the negative – God does not want – to mean that God is actually OK with some perishing (which would be the reprobate) but would rather that no one actually perish.

      1. rhutchin
        the Calvinist follows the rule of antecedents

        br.d
        Calvinism’s number one rule of exegesis
        1) Universal Divine Casual Determinism is CANNON
        2) All scripture verses *MUST* affirm CANNON
        3) All scripture verses that conflict with CANNON cannot possibly mean what they say

        Thus the word of God is made void by a tradition of interpretation

        Oh! But Calvinists don’t have a tradition of interpretation!
        And if you believe that – there is a spectacular deal on a bridge in Florida just waiting for you! :-]

      2. rhutchin: “the Calvinist follows the rule of antecedents”
        br.d: “Calvinism’s number one rule of exegesis…’

        What follows has nothing to do with antecedents. We see that br.d cannot argue against the Calvinist position on antecedents in 2 Peter 3 (How could he?)..

      3. What follows has nothing to do with antecedents. We see that br.d cannot argue against the Calvinist position on antecedents in 2 Peter 3 (How could he?)..

        br.d
        Didn’t need to argue against any sacred methods.
        Already knew Calvinism’s number one rule of exegesis.
        That totally explains ever interpretation.

  40. More from 2 Peter 3

    11 “Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, 12 waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God,” (quoted from the King James-sounding Calvinist ESV).
    ————-

    What? Since the world is being destroyed we are to live holy and godly lives? Oh…. I see “waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God.”

    We can hasten the day of the Lord? What does that mean? You have to ask yourself. Dont you?

    A. How do we hasten it?

    B. If it was already determined from time past, we couldn’t hasten or slow it.

    C. Why does Almighty God infer here that we mere men have anything to do with hastening (or not) the day of the Lord? I mean think about it. Our Calvinist friends tell us man is but a puppet, and certainly God does not depend on man for anything (despite many such verses that say that Jesus could not do miracles because of their lack of faith.)

    Why would God imply such a thing if man were as insignificant as reformed theology tells us?

    1. Why would God imply such a thing if man were as insignificant as reformed theology tells us?

      br.d
      Perhaps we’re being misinformed by Calvin’s LARGE MIXTURE OF HYPOCRITES within his fold.
      Those who are – by logical extension – Totally Depraved :-]

  41. More from 2 Peter 3.

    (KJV) 15 “And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation;” (KJV)
    —————

    Let’s do a little exercise. It’s not really clear what that verse in KJV means at first (or second) look. So let go to the Calvinist ESV….

    (ESV) 15 “Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation,” (ESV)

    Okay… that is a little better but not that clear. I think he means…. The Lord’s patience means salvation. Let’s try the NIV.

    (NIV) 15 “And count the patience of our Lord as salvation,” (NIV)

    Okay… that is not much clearer, but looks like he means….. The Lord’s patience means salvation. One more, the NLT.

    (NLT) 15 “And remember, our Lord’s patience gives people time to be saved.” (NLT)

    So THAT’S what Peter is saying!! Why didn’t those guys just say so! Yes indeed…. our Lord’s patience give people time to be saved. Sometimes I wonder if the ESV is trying to made it hard to understand (or just trying to stay high-church and KJV -sounding). Making it hard to understand would certainly fit with their idea of letting clergy (“those who can preach!”) be the ones in charge of interpretation.

    How does the Lord’s patience mean salvation? Again, patient with who? If He has already determined all of this He DOES NOT need any patience.

    1. FOH
      How does the Lord’s patience mean salvation? Again, patient with who? If He has already determined all of this He DOES NOT need any patience.

      br.d
      This is Calvinism’s grand conundrum.
      They want to insist upon determinism – while the general narrative of scripture depicts IN-Determinism.
      And in order to maintain NORMAL interactions with people on a day-to-day basis – they have to ASSUME IN-Determinism.

      William Lane Craig – #564 Calvinism and the Unliveability of Determinism
      A determinist CANNOT live consistently as though everything he thinks and does is causally determined—especially his choice to believe that determinism is true!

      Thinking that you’re determined to believe that everything you believe is determined produces a kind of vertigo.

      Nobody can live as though all that he thinks and does is determined by causes outside himself….Determinism is thus an unliveable view.

      Calvin understood this – especially with the aspect of sin.
      That is why he instructed his disciples to -quote “Go about your office AS-IF nothing is determined in every part”
      In other words – Believe determinism is TRUE but act AS-IF determinism is FALSE”

      This is where Calvinists get their AS-IF thinking from
      And its why they constatnly speak double-speak.

      [A] is true AS-IF [A] is FALSE

    2. FOH the Pelagian still insist that Christ is the Lord mentioned in 2 Peter 2:1 who bought those false prophets.

      1. FOH, the Pelagian will stick to this because Salvation for him is conditional, mixed with man-made faith, It is FOH’s Plagiarism of God’s work in salvation.

      2. FOH, the Pelagian believes in man’s native ability to obtain Salvation from God (He rejected the doctrine of Man’s total inability (I Cor. 2:14, Rom. 8:7-8). It cannot be denied that FOH’s native ability is the work of the Old Nature or Fallen Nature that is an enmity of God.

      3. In other words, the man-made faith that FOH, the Pelagian is heralding is sin infected. My goodness… how can this be accepted by God ?

      4. FOH’s native or Man-made faith is the work of the old sinful nature. Despite of this, FOH still hold on Faith precedes Regeneration.

      5. Those who fall back on their native faith, self-generated faith to save themselves have already fallen from the Grace of God.

      6. Where does FOH’s faith come from? according to him it’s NOT the gift of God, it is his own native faith, self-generated faith. Here in this system, FOH is the one who maintains his own salvation and at the same time he also teaches that Salvation his conditional.

      7. There is no doubt that even in 2 Peter 2:1, FOH, the Pelagian assert that it is Christ who bought those false prophets and false teachers. This view of FOH, the Pelagian is faulty and contradicts what Jesus Christ have declared that : Christ only offered His life for the Sheep, not to the entire humanity on earth. FOH denies this for he includes even the false prophets and false teachers as legitimate beneficiaries of the atonement.

      8. The Lord who bought them that was mentioned in 2 Peter 2:1 is not “kurios” – The Lord Jesus Christ, but rather “Despotes” with reference to the Lord God the Father who bought them from slavery in Egypt according to Exodus 15:16 and Deut. 32:6.

      9. The word used “bought” has nothing reference to Christ’s atonement on the cross at Calvary. God the Father was not the one who provided the atonement for sins of the elect at the cross of Calvary. Those false prophets might have slip into the exodus of the Hebrews when they were released by Pharaoh in Egypt, so that Peter said in that verse : “But there were also false prophets among the people. Who are these people mentioned here by Peter? The answer is the Israelites.

      1. jtleosala
        The Lord who bought them that was mentioned in 2 Peter 2:1 is not “kurios” – The Lord Jesus Christ, but rather “Despotes” with reference to the Lord God the Father who bought them from slavery in Egypt according to Exodus 15:16 and Deut. 32:6.

        jtleosala
        The word used “bought” has nothing reference to Christ’s atonement on the cross at Calvary.

        br.d
        And of course this one is a bible scholar who speaks with ABSOLUTE AUTHORITY.

        2 Peter 2 – Expositor’s Greek Commentary
        If the ordinary use of δεσπότης (master) in early Christian writers is followed here, viz., as referring to God, ἀγοράζω would also be used of God, who redeemed Israel out of Egypt (2 Samuel 7:23). The reference here, however, is to Christ (cf. Mayor, p. 17.). The N.T. use of ἀγορ. is illustrated in 1 Corinthians 6:20, where reference might be to God; but in 2 Samuel 7:23 reference is clearly to Christ. So in Revelation 5:9. Cf. our Lord’s words in Mark 10:45, about “giving his life a ransom” and Jude 2 Peter 2:4.

        2 Peter 2 Clarke’s Commentary
        Denying the Lord that bought them – It is not certain whether God the Father be intended here, or our Lord Jesus Christ; for God is said to have purchased the Israelites, Exodus 15:16, and to be the Father that had bought them, Deuteronomy 32:6, and the words may refer to these or such like passages; or they may point out Jesus Christ, who had bought them with his blood; and the heresies, or dangerous opinions, may mean such as opposed the Divinity of our Lord, or his meritorious and sacrificial death, or such opinions as bring upon those who hold them swift destruction. It seems, however, more natural to understand the Lord that bought them as applying to Christ, than otherwise; and if so, this is another proof, among many,
        1. That none can be saved but by Jesus Christ.
        2. That through their own wickedness some may perish for whom Christ died.

        Jesus tells us the scribes and Pharisees *ALWAYS* position themselves in the seat of Moses.
        The discerning Christian can connect the dots here.

    3. FOH, the Pelagian posted the statement below:

      “Several places in the Bible we are told that showing partiality is not good—- God “is not a respecter of persons” —- God “does not show favoritism.”

      ———– Here’s My Response below this line —————

      FOH, the Pelagian is wrong again… his statement contradicts Romans 9:13 and Romans 9:22

      1. jtleosala
        FOH, the Pelagian posted the statement below:

        “Several places in the Bible we are told that showing partiality is not good—- God “is not a respecter of persons” —- God “does not show favoritism.”

        FOH, the Pelagian is wrong again… his statement contradicts Romans 9:13 and Romans 9:22

        br.d
        Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: Acts 10:34

        Peter (i.e. scripture) is either speaking the truth here or speaking a falsehood.

        This argument presented above presupposes Peter – and thus scripture is speaking falsehood.
        The arguer presents two other verses in scripture which he asserts contradict what Peter/scripture declares.
        The discerning Christian can judge for himself whether this argument reflects a proper respect for God’s word.

        However
        “God does not show favoritism” is more subtle.

        – He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the LORD.
        – Surely, LORD, you bless the righteous; you surround them with your favor as with a shield.
        – The LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless
        – He mocks proud mockers but shows favor to the humble and oppressed.
        – Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.

        These verses clearly show scripture depicting God’s favor on one individual vs another.
        But it should be obvious by these examples that favor is represented as God’s promise for meeting conditions which he sets.

        No one would argue that God does not have the right to ARBITRARY favor.
        But one has to ask if ARBITRARY favor is consistent within scripture and as a representation of perfect Holiness.

    4. FOH, the Pelagian writes :

      “How does the Lord’s patience mean salvation? Again, patient with who? If He has already determined all of this He DOES NOT need any patience.”

      ————- My reaction is reflected below this line———

      FOH, the Pelagian is just short sighted. Anyone cannot visualize God’s own timing as to when He will actualize the elect to respond to Christ in as regards to His eternal decree. The Pelagian might have forgotten that all of us came out of this world as sinners including the elect. There is that time where God will actualize to engage with the elect sinners and that is “Regeneration”. According to Jesus Christ to be born again (regenerated) is a necessity. No one can see the Kingdom of God without being Regenerated…. And who has the power to do this thing if man is dead spiritually? Again FOH, the Pelagian will say, he will make his own alive using his own native faith of the fallen man… this is foolishness.

      1. jtleosala
        FOH, the Pelagian writes :
        “How does the Lord’s patience mean salvation? Again, patient with who? If He has already determined all of this He DOES NOT need any patience.”

        FOH, the Pelagian is just short sighted. Anyone cannot visualize God’s own timing as to when He will actualize the elect to respond to Christ in as regards to His eternal decree.

        br.d
        This is a logical argument – but is fallacious.

        In Theological Determinism EVERY event without exception is Predestined – Determined – Fixed – Settled – Unrestrainable – Unpreventable – Immutable.

        The status of each and every event (in every part) is established at the foundation of the world.
        A point before the creature exists.

        Since this is the case – the fallacy of equivocation is presented – which equivocates on this “FIXED” status of the event – by conflating it with the time in which it is to be actualized – which is also FIXED.

        Therefore FOH’s statement is logically valid – and this argument fails.

        On top of that – it should be easy to see the presenter here is focused on attacking specific persons
        I leave it to the discerning Christian to ascertain what spirit that is of.

      2. br.d,
        Thanks for coming to the aid of FOH the Polynesian.

        As you know, JTL’s aggressive personal attacks are why I dont engage. All of his response can be rebuffed (as you have done), but I prefer to simply share what I see in Scripture and not deal with his anger.

        Besides he never really deals with things like “God being patient with people” but just uses that as a launching pad to go off target in the normal “this can never be!” sort of way.

        I see God regularly say He is being patient with men and notice the two ways this makes no sense for determinist Calvinists:

        (a) If He has already determined everything (what most Calvinists do not even know they have to teach to be a Calvinist) then who is He being patient with? Himself? Meaning: If a person REALLY thinks that God is showing any kind of real patience toward’s men and their decisions then that person is not really a Calvinist.

        (b) The very fact that Almighty God says (many times) that He is “waiting” or “patient” with man indicates that God cares about and values man’s decisions. This (man’s decisions) of course is an irrelevant idea for Calvinists.

      3. Yup! I totally agree.
        JT is probably just using a certain library of strategies and talking-points he has been taught to use.
        There is perhaps some mentor out there – who is teaching those strategies by example.
        And little wide-eyed young ones – calculate walking along in lock-step will make them big also.

        I’m discerning enough to know that Calvinism has its own sociological totem-poles and respecting of persons.

        But as you can see with his arguments – he has also fully embraced the double-speak.
        Calvin’s god determines all things in every part AS-IF he doesn’t

        This shows very clearly that Calvinists have a love-hate relationship with Theological Determinism
        Unfortunately they are chained to it – like a ball and chain around ones leg.
        But that doesn’t stop them from make-believing they’re not.

        As Elijah said “How long will you halt between two opinions”.

      4. br.d,
        I will quickly add though that I think that JTL really believes he is respecting, honoring God… and even “defending” God by what he does. What he likely does not know is that I racially love and respect the Lord Jesus Christ. It’s just that I dont think Scripture depicts Him the way that Calvinists do.

        The irony of the whole thing is that if determinist-Calvinism-fatalism-Qadr is true (as Calvin and Sproul teach it) I have no choice but to do other than I am doing anyway. Therefore there is no real reason to “defend” God against people like me since I am (by no choice of my own) “doing God’s will also.”

      5. FOH
        The irony of the whole thing is that if determinist-Calvinism-fatalism-Qadr is true (as Calvin and Sproul teach it) I have no choice but to do other than I am doing anyway. Therefore there is no real reason to “defend” God against people like me since I am (by no choice of my own) “doing God’s will also.”

        br.d
        I think you’re very gracious FOH.
        I’ll grant you that he may be doing what he thinks is right before God.
        But the strategy he’s following – he would have had to have learned from someone.

        Right on the logic of it!
        Since when does a creature have the power to change or alter what a THEOS has made unchangeable.

        Calvin understood this as a dilemma that could not be evaded with logical thinking.
        His way of dealing with the problem was to teach them to embrace it as both TRUE and FALSE at the same time.

        -quote “go about your office AS-IF nothing is determined in any part”.

        This is why we find Calvinist arguments as constant attempts to camouflage contradictions behind language tricks.

        Hence the double-speak.

      6. br.d writes, “Since when does a creature have the power to change or alter what a THEOS has made unchangeable.”

        The creature does not, and cannot, have power over his creator when his creator is sovereign and omnipotent..

      7. br.d writes, “Since when does a creature have the power to change or alter what a THEOS has made unchangeable.”

        rhutchin
        The creature does not, and cannot, have power over his creator when his creator is sovereign and omnipotent..

        br.d
        A supernatural being doesn’t have to have sovereignty nor omnipotence to have power of a creature.
        Even you can have power over a worm.
        You don’t need either supernatural sovereignty or omnipotence to accomplish that.

        But if you wanted to create a world of creatures who function like puppets or robots?
        Now that’s another matter altogether. :-]

      8. br.d writes, “A supernatural being doesn’t have to have sovereignty nor omnipotence to have power of a creature.”

        That statement makes no sense. God is sovereign and God is omnipotence. Why talk about a god, or anyone, who is neither? Was there a point to this comment??.

      9. br.d
        “A supernatural being doesn’t have to have sovereignty nor omnipotence to have power of a creature.”

        rhutchin
        That statement makes no sense. God is sovereign and God is omnipotence. Why talk about a god, or anyone, who is neither? Was there a point to this comment??.

        br.d
        I guess you don’t know the difference between a supernatural being and a natural creature.
        Sorry I assumed you would.

        The spirit who threw the boy into the fire in Mark 9 – was a supernatural being who neither had sovereignty (as defined by god’s) sovereignty) nor did it have omnipotence. Yet it had power to manipulate the young boy to the point of throwing him into a fire.

        Likewise you have power over a worm.
        And you don’t need sovereignty or omnipotence for that.

        Like Edwards who talks about a being who flicks people like spiders into a fire.
        That being doesn’t need sovereignty or omnipotence to do that any more than a demon spirit does.

        No sense in carrying this forward if you don’t get the point.

      10. br.d wrote, “Since when does a creature have the power to change or alter what a THEOS has made unchangeable.”
        rhutchin responded, “The creature does not, and cannot, have power over his creator when his creator is sovereign and omnipotent..”
        br.d then said, “A supernatural being doesn’t have to have sovereignty nor omnipotence to have power of a creature.”
        rhutchin responded, “That statement makes no sense. God is sovereign and God is omnipotence. Why talk about a god, or anyone, who is neither?’

        So, br.d cannot defend his statement, “A supernatural being doesn’t have to have sovereignty nor omnipotence to have power of a creature.” He changes the subject from God (or THEOS) to other supernatural beings (spirits) and even man. Guess br.d could not defend his statement so he is deflecting.

      11. rhutchin
        So, br.d cannot defend his statement, “A supernatural being doesn’t have to have sovereignty nor omnipotence to have power of a creature.” He changes the subject from God (or THEOS) to other supernatural beings (spirits) and even man. Guess br.d could not defend his statement so he is deflecting.

        br.d
        If it works for you to call my statement deflecting – I certainly can’t stop you.
        I’m happy with what I stated as logical and to the point.
        And its not a problem – if you don’t get the point – not to worry – life goes on.

      12. br.d writes, “I’m happy with what I stated as logical and to the point.’

        But, so what?? It has nothing to do with the discussion. at least, you cannot explain its relevance. It’s just you losing focus and going off on a tangent as you tend to do.

      13. br.d
        “I’m happy with what I stated as logical and to the point.’

        rhutchin
        But, so what?? It has nothing to do with the discussion. at least, you cannot explain its relevance. It’s just you losing focus and going off on a tangent as you tend to do.

        br.d
        Says who? :-]

      14. FOH writes, “(b) The very fact that Almighty God says (many times) that He is “waiting” or “patient” with man indicates that God cares about and values man’s decisions.”

        At least for His elect.

        Then, “This (man’s decisions) of course is an irrelevant idea for Calvinists.”

        Except for God’s elect.

      15. FOH
        “(b) The very fact that Almighty God says (many times) that He is “waiting” or “patient” with man indicates that God cares about and values man’s decisions.” “This (man’s decisions) of course is an irrelevant idea for Calvinists.”

        rhutchin
        At least for His elect.

        br.d
        FALSE
        in Theological Determinism all human thoughts, choices, actions are made before humans exist regardless of whether Calvin’s god has made that person “elect” or not. Since man’s decisions are made by Calvin’s god at the foundation of the world – it logically follows all Calvin’s god would be caring about is those creaturely decisions he had already RENDERED-CERTAIN come to pass.

        These do not have their source in the creature – since they were established before the creature was born.
        They have their source in the THEOS who FIRST CONCEIVED them at the foundation of the world.

        Determinism is UNIVERSAL and not particular.
        So the status or condition of the creature would be functionally irrelevant.

        Calvinist A. A. Hodge
        A *CONDITIONAL* decree would subvert the sovereignty of God and make him … dependent upon the unconditional actions of his own creatures,” (Outlines of Theology)

        There is no such thing as CONDITIONAL decree of creaturely thoughts, choices, or actions in Theological Determinism.

        Every aspect of the creature including every neurological impulse occurs UNCONDITIONALLY.

      16. br.d,

        Thanks for that Hodge quote. It is man-elevated theologians that have put us in so much trouble.

        Hodge just ipso facto declares that his version of sovereignty is the right one although we dont see it in the Bible (people often do what God does not want; God often puts conditions on man) and we NEVER see that brand of sovereignty in the world. No “sovereign” now or in history has had the kind of control they propose.

        So, according to Hodge a conditional decree would subvert God’s sovereignty. No wonder Calvinists are so aggressive! They think they need to rescue God from what He says in His word (“let me explain that statement from God for you”). No wonder they ignore so many hundreds and hundreds of verses where God clearly lays out the conditions (“If you do this, I will do this…”) or clearly says that man did not meet His conditions (“Because you have not X I will no longer do X”). It got so frustrating for me to cut out huge chunks of the Bible that did not fit Reformed theology.

        And indeed it is no wonder that they have not one teeny tiny way to understand “God having patience with us,” since their version does not allow any personal interaction with man.

        Even in the simplistic answer “for His elect” gets them no where. According to Calvinism, He has absolutely no reason or inclination to be patient—- he already declared what will happen. Being patient in what way?

        One only has to reflect for 3 minutes to see that saying someone is patient “necessarily” means that He is waiting for the action of the other. That “necessarily” means to some degree He is “dependent” on the action of the other. Otherwise…. the term means nothing.

        In what way is God patient with “His elect” if He has chosen them and micro-manage-ly planned out their every action?

        Again… Calvinism renders the Bible meaningless.

      17. Yes FOH you are absolutely correct

        Historically Christian Philosophers call what you are talking about “contingent” events.
        In other words things that are “contingent” upon the creature.
        And how by the nature of Determinism – “contingent” are obliterated.

        William Lane Craig points out that early Reformed thinkers such as François Turrettini were not willing to swallow the whole camel of determinism – because of the very thing you point out..

        The fact that a preponderance of scripture affirms a world created by God which is NOT deterministic.
        They decided to call the situation mystery.
        This would represent somewhat of a departure from Calvin’s radical determinism.

        However, Calvinists such as Gills and especially Edwards went full tilt into Determinism.
        And all of the problems you describe come to surface.

        The way Calvinists like MacArthur and Piper deal with these problems is to hide them behind deceptive language.
        That’s why I say understanding Calvinism is fairly simple

        A Calvinist is a determinist – wearing a mask of IN-determinism – reciting double-speak talking points.
        Hence what we observe here from our current Calvinist participants.

      18. br.d,
        To be clear there are some mysteries in the Word.

        It is a mystery how God can be three and one.

        It is a mystery how Christ can be man and God.

        Most of all of these kinds of mysteries have to do with the nature of God….. meaning we just cannot quite grasp it.

        But the “mystery” of how can the world —before time— be determined (willed/ decreed/ ordained) including all decisions, actions, and thoughts that man will ever make or have…. while it is also a place where man makes choices to participate in nature and history …. is not a necessary “mystery”.

        Calvinists impose on the Scripture this version of determinism-fatalism…. then take the 98% of Scripture that makes contradicts this idea…. and say “mystery”. “Man should have known better.” “People are accountable.” “Believers cooperate synergistically with God in sanctification.”

        Mystery!

        No, contradiction.

        Unnecessary contradiction. God never describes Himself managing EVERY action, sin, rape, torture, good thought, bad thought of man, so the impose Greek philosophy is not necessary. However, He does say —what, thousands of times— clear sentences like “If you had only X, I would have Y.”

        This idea is repeated in all the genres of Scripture: history, law, poetry, wisdom, epistle etc. It is literally everywhere. It is, in fact, what gives our existence and behavior significance. Christ wants a personal relationship. He allows and invites man to participate in history. Calvinism literally makes him a puppet—- while telling the whole time he is a real boy.

      19. Yes – I totally agree.
        There are legitimate mysteries in scripture.
        And you as well as so many other believers who look at the logical consequences of Determinism come to the same conclusion.
        There are so many problems it introduces.
        1) It makes God into a deceiver. He communicates to people – leading them to believe his will is for their blessing – when his SECRET will is the opposite. He communicates to them using language that leads them to believe he has not predestined their every neurological impulse when he SECRETLY has. So this makes the language God speaks deceptive.

        2) If forces its believers to bend words and terms within scripture to ensure enough verses affirm determinism. This is done by philosophical arguments concerning categories. Asserting the word ALL means “All without distinction” for example. ALL without exception – is a category for all people. The interpreter in order to bend ALL to mean “All without distinction” must INVENT a sub-category. In this case Jews and Gentiles. Then you have Christ died for the ‘whole world”. Here the word “whole” has to be bent also into a sub-category “gentiles of certain cultures tongues and nations. That sub-category has to be INVENTED also. Neither of those sub-categorizes are EXPLICITLY stated in the text. They are ADDED to the text by exegetical argument.

        3) Calvinists themselves have to halt between two opinions. They must align themselves with determinism. But such a large percentage of scripture affirms the opposite. So they must flip back and forth between determinism and IN-determinism. They want to have both – but determinism and IN-determinism are mutually exclusive like false and true.

        4) In order to defend God from the obvious “author of evil” Calvinists become experts at how to use misleading language tricks.
        I think perhaps this is the most devastating problem above all of them for the Calvinist because it teaches him to justify dishonesty.

        5) It puts Calvinists who will not bite the bullet and embrace full-bore determinism into a state of double-mindedness.

        So there are a host of reasons why a discerning Christian would want to avoid Calvinism like the plague.

      20. br.d,

        More examples of the hypocrisy that Calvinism forces on Christ:

        “Come to me all you who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest…” (knowing that only a teeeeeny weeeeny percentage of those who heard His words or read His words would be “regenerated” so they could even “really hear” what He said).

        “Oh Jerusalem….how I longed to gather you … but you would not….” (knowing that He wasnt reeeeeally longing to gather them since He never made it possible).

        “When the Son of Man is lifted up He will draw all men to Himself” (knowing that He really meant “some of all kinds” of men).

        The wedding parable where everyone is invited (knowing that the invitation is not reeeeeaally an sincere invitation).

        “Looking at him, Jesus felt a love for him and said to him, ‘One thing you lack: go and sell all you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.'” (knowing that He wasnt reeeeeally loving the man and inviting him to follow Him —since He did not make it possible).

        If Calvinism is true then these (and many more like them) would mean that Christ was either insincere or deceptive.

        What kind of an invitation it is if you know that you yourself have made it impossible for the person to come?

      21. Yes that’s absolutely correct – Calvinist is NOT good news for the vast majority of human race.
        And calling it “Doctrines of Grace” is one of its famous misleading half-truths.

        That’s like calling “flip a coin” a a games of heads.

  42. Proverb section for the day, 28:21-22.

    21 To show partiality is not good—
    yet a person will do wrong for a piece of bread. (ESV)
    ————

    Several places in the Bible we are told that showing partiality is not good—- God “is not a respecter of persons” —- God “does not show favoritism.”

    And yet….the entire scaffolding of Calvinism is built on exactly that. God shows favor to a tiny few and despises all the rest…. for no reason but His own good pleasure.

    1. FOH writes, “Several places in the Bible we are told that showing partiality is not good—- God “is not a respecter of persons” —- God “does not show favoritism.”

      God does not show favoritism as He reacts to the actions of people – God blesses those who obey Him and does not bless those who disobey Him whether Jew or gentile.

      Then, “And yet….the entire scaffolding of Calvinism is built on exactly that. God shows favor to a tiny few and despises all the rest…. for no reason but His own good pleasure.”

      God does favor some over others. God chose Abraham and none other. God chose Isaac over Ishmael and Jacob over Esau. Were not the Jews favored by God over the gentiles and they were a few. In Ephesians 1, we read that “God chose us,” and it is obvious that the context is not “God chose everyone equally.”

      So, what does FOH mean when he says, “the entire scaffolding of Calvinism is built on exactly that. God shows favor to a tiny few and despises all the rest,” when it is obvious that God has favored a tiny few (Israel) and despised the rest (gentiles)?

  43. Daily Bible reading gets me to 1 John 2.

    My dear children, I am writing this to you so that you will not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate who pleads our case before the Father. He is Jesus Christ, the one who is truly righteous. 2 He himself is the sacrifice that atones for our sins—and not only our sins but the sins of all the world.
    ————

    I know we are told by Calvinist friends that world does not mean world (God so loved ‘part of the’ world that He gave His son), but if you look at this whole chapter, John is talking about the difference between those who follow (active verb) Christ and those who dont. He is constantly comparing believers and non-believers.

    Which is what he is doing in verse 2. Christ atones for our sins (believers) and all the world (even those who do or dont do all the stuff he goes on to talk about).

  44. A bit more from 1 John 2.

    9 Whoever says he is in the light and hates his brother is still in darkness. 10 Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him there is no cause for stumbling. 11 But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes. [Calvinist ESV]
    ——————–

    I will need some help from Calvinists since this is their translation. A person who hates his brother (in the faith) is still in darkness. The darkness has blinded his eyes. Is this a believer or not? —- still in darkness? But if you love, you abide in the light?

    1. FOH
      I will need some help from Calvinists since this is their translation. A person who hates his brother (in the faith) is still in darkness. The darkness has blinded his eyes. Is this a believer or not? —- still in darkness? But if you love, you abide in the light?

      br.d
      In Gnosticism we see the cosmology of dualism.
      In dualism everything comes is antithetical pairs.
      Light – darkness
      Yes – No
      True – false

      We see this dualism in Calvinist conceptions:
      – Unsalvific – Salvation
      – Non Elect – Elect
      – IN-Deterministic – determinism

      In this case – I think the Calvinist answer will probably take some form of: Non Elect – Elect.

    2. FOH writes, “A person who hates his brother (in the faith) is still in darkness. The darkness has blinded his eyes. Is this a believer or not? —- still in darkness?”

      Believers still deal with their old nature while renewing their minds of the filth came out of. Apparently, FOH does not have this problem else he would not ask the question.

      1. rhutchin
        FOH does not have this problem else he would not ask the question.

        br.d
        We understand.
        Calvinists don’t have much for problems.
        A determinist going his office AS-IF nothing is determined in any part is just too easy! :-]

  45. The true brother in the faith are those of the same precious faith. FOH, the Pelagian knows that.

    The Pelagian has rejected the doctrine of “Regeneration Precedes Faith”. Br D and his god will be quick to say that it must be determined by God. This will really keep him in darkness as what he says in his post using the ESV. He claims to love, but when asked if he equally love John Calvin, Piper, James White, MacArthur, Sproul, Matt Slick, Rhutchin and Myself, he cannot answer directly. It’s just a Myth of the “Decoy Love” that he can add to this “5 Myths of FOH, the Pelagian @ SOT 101”.

    FOH, the Pelagian is cuddling a man-made faith and a conditional salvation of man. Therefore he has already fallen from the grace of God. He calls himself as FOH, the Polynesian, but actually he is a Pelagian due to his man-made efforts that he holds on in accessing a conditional Salvation.

    FOH, the Pelagian wrote this: “He himself is the sacrifice that atones for our sins—and not only our sins but the sins of all the world.”

    Which is what he is doing in verse 2. Christ atones for our sins (believers) and all the world (even those who do or dont do all the stuff he goes on to talk about).”

    ———— My Reaction———-

    “… for our sins” – refers to John’s audience, the Jewish believers in Christ

    “but the sins of the whole world” – refers to the world of Gentile believers in Christ coming from different nations, tongues, culture but not the entire Gentile world.

    1. jtleosala
      The Pelagian has rejected the doctrine of “Regeneration Precedes Faith”

      br.d
      Casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.

      jtleosala
      FOH, the Pelagian is cuddling a man-made faith and a conditional salvation of man.

      br.d
      Here we go again with the same old double-minded chatter – repeated like a broken record.
      In Theological Determinism there is no such thing as “Man made”.

      The Doctrine of God – Calvinist John Feinberg
      -quote
      “God is the *AUTHOR* of a novel who *CONCEIVES* and brings about *EVERY* event that happens,”
      Exercising complete control over his characters” .

      A Calvinist who thinks that part of his doctrine is both TRUE and FALSE at the same time is double-minded.

      jtleosala
      when asked if he equally love John Calvin, Piper, James White, MacArthur, Sproul, Matt Slick, Rhutchin and Myself, he cannot answer directly

      br.d
      The Pharisee always positions himself in Moses’ seat – he binds burdens on others he himself will not lift a finger to bear. Matthew 23:4

      jtleosala
      “but the sins of the whole world” – refers to the world of Gentile believers in Christ coming from different nations, tongues, culture but not the entire Gentile world.

      br.d
      Thus they nullify the word of God by their tradition of interpretation. Mark 7:13

  46. My reading gets me to 2 John 2-3.

    2: 24 As for you, see that what you have heard from the beginning remains in you. If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father. 25 And this is what he promised us—eternal life.
    —————

    John is constantly talking about staying in the faith “being led astray” etc. Here it says to take care “that what you have heard from the beginning remains in you.”

    Then he adds, “if it does…” because, by inference, he is saying it might not.

    But “if it does” you will “remain in the Son.”

    Why all this “take care” or “see to it” … and “if it does…. then you will remain” wording about eternal life?

    Calvinists tell us this has all been decided before time began, so for them, John is really wasting his time with all these warnings.

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