Reprobation: Speculation or Scriptural?

This article, originally entitled “Edwin H. Palmer’s Twelve Theses on Reprobation: Speculation or Scriptural?” is reproduced in its entirety with permission by its author Ron F. Hale

Over Christmas, I went hunting while visiting family in Dallas, Texas. I love hunting old theology books in quaint book stores. I tracked down two books in the older book section in Half Price Books and bagged them both. The store’s stout and steamy coffee on a nippy day enhanced the outing.

One find is entitled The Right to Heresy: Castellio against Calvin published by Beacon Press in 1951, it is a reprint of a 1936 copyright owned by Viking Press, Inc. The Austrian author, Stefan Zweig, lays out an intriguing historical case for Sebastian Castellio against John Calvin’s grisly treatment of Miguel Servetus and those who resisted his doctrine and dominion. I will side step this famous fracas at this time.

The other book was written by Edwin H. Palmer entitled, The Five Points of Calvinism (enlarged edition) first published in 1972. Palmer was Executive Secretary of the New International Version of the Bible (NIV) and General Editor of the NIV Study Bible. He has pastored Christian Reformed congregations and served as instructor at Westminster Theological Seminary.

The Twelve

Palmer adds to this enlarged edition a chapter on reprobation entitled: Twelve Theses on Reprobation.  As listed in Chapter 7, they are:

  1. The Bible is the infallible, inerrant Word of God and is the final arbiter in all teaching, including reprobation.
  2. God is holy: He is the absolute antithesis of sin, and a hater of evil.
  3. Although sin and unbelief are contrary to what God commands (His perceptive will), God has included them in His sovereign decree (ordained them, caused them to certainly come to pass).
  4. Historically, many, but not all, theologians have spoken of two parts of reprobation: 1). Preterition and 2). Condemnation.
  5. Reprobation as preterition is unconditional, and as condemnation is conditional.
  6. Preterition is the reverse side of election.
  7. God does not effectuate sin and unbelief in the same way He effectuates good deeds and faith.
  8. Objections to the teaching of reprobation are usually based on scholastic rationalism rather than on humble submission to the Word of God.
  9. It is wrong to expect the Bible to give a systematic theological treatise on reprobation.
  10. A person does not know if he is reprobate, but he may know if he is elect.
  11. Reprobation should be preached.
  12. Ignorance is wisdom.

Palmer defines this reformed doctrine by saying: “Reprobation is God’s eternal, sovereign, unconditional, immutable, wise, holy, and mysterious decree whereby, in electing some to eternal life, He passes others by, and then justly condemns them for their own sin – all to His own glory.”

Tender Heart for the Reprobate

My heart has always been tendered toward the theological creature in Augustinian/Reformed tradition known as the reprobate for they find themselves in a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” no-win situation.

I believe in election and that it “is consistent with the free agency of man.” Thus, the idea of the reprobate is a problem to my way of believing.

Since many Calvinists do not see any conditionality in the sovereign decree(s) of God, they must either adhere to a system where God decides to choose some (the elect) and rejects or predestines others to hell (the non-elect or the reprobate), or they go with the less harsh version, where God only predestines the elect to heaven but the non-elect go their own way in sin without a harsh decree but with a fate that is sealed because of God’s non-choosing. The reprobate is born with a big “L” for loser in decretal theology.

Traditionalists or non-Calvinists have a much simpler answer without a mysterious speculative system that only philosophical minds wish to explore. For the traditionalist, the repentant person who trusts Jesus by believing the Gospel is saved and the non-believer rejecting Jesus is condemned to hell.

Kenneth Keathley’s chapter entitled The Work of God: Salvation, in the 2007 systematic theology book A Theology For The Church delves into a four pointed criticism of decretal theology.

Four Criticisms  

  1. Decretal theology is highly speculative about issues on which the Bible gives little or no information.

Later Keathley mentions the work of Jewett who profoundly asserts, “If we begin our study of the doctrine of election by asking what God ordained before the foundation of the world, then we are led into a hopeless labyrinth.” Hence, “we must begin with what God has revealed in Jesus Christ,” says Keathley.

“Thus decretal theology is actually a philosophy masquerading as theology” states Keathley, as theologians seek to divine “the mind of God by discerning the logical order of the decrees… .”

  1. Decretal theology is a logical system that ultimately fails logically.

Quoting Thomas Schreiner, he states, “The scandal of the Calvinist system is that ultimately the logical problems posed cannot be fully resolved.”

While all theological systems fall short, it seems that according to Keathley, “ … decretal theology has sometimes run roughshod over certain clear teachings of Scripture, particularly in the areas of the extent of the atonement and God’s universal salvific desire.”

  1. Decretal theology leaves the moral problems of predestination unresolved.

He summarizes Calvin’s implications of this “dreadful” decree, by saying, “Calvinism teaches that the ultimate reason a person dies lost is because God decides against him, not the other way around.”

  1. Decretal theology reduces Christ to the mere instrument by which the decrees are accomplished.

Both lapsarian options, according to Keathley, “assumes that God logically begins his plans with us and then decides to send his Son to be our Savior. This highly questionable assumption seems to have the effect of making Christ an afterthought and commits the mistake that decretal theology strives to avoid – it puts man at the front and center of attention … rather Jesus Christ is the locus and sum of salvation, including election (Eph. 1:4; 2 Tim.1:9).”

I close, reminding you of professor Palmer’s eighth point in his twelve theses on reprobation, he asserts, “Objections to the teaching of reprobation are usually based on scholastic rationalism rather than on humble submission to the Word of God.” With respectful disagreement, many non-Calvinist theologians fail to find the Biblical foundation for such a speculative and confounding doctrine. They see the doctrine of decrees and reprobation extending beyond the crystal-clear teachings of the Old and New Testaments, thereby, presenting conclusions where serious speculation abounds.

The prophet Moses spoke, “The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of the law” (Duet. 29:29 ESV).

Philosophical presuppositions, speculations, divine mysteries and salvific secrets need to be examined by great Christian thinkers and writers, but never to the extent of turning the clearly revealed Gospel of Jesus Christ into something muddy, mystifying, and misunderstood by the masses of lost humanity, “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost” (Luke 19:10).

© Ron F. Hale, January 27, 2019

163 thoughts on “Reprobation: Speculation or Scriptural?

  1. Great discussion of an important foundational issue! Does Palmer give Scriptures for each point? To proclaim the importance Scripture without giving any would be telling! And Schreiner’s quote was a grand admission that at least his position is recognizably illogical.

  2. Indeed it is this phrase that caught my eye:

    “Objections to the teaching of reprobation are usually based on scholastic rationalism rather than on humble submission to the Word of God.”

    Once again those who disagree with Calvinist-fatalists (a) are rationalists (“just depending on man’s logic”), (b) not humble, and (c) not submitted to God’s Word.

    So arrogantly put.

    1. “Objections to the teaching of reprobation are usually based on scholastic rationalism rather than on humble submission to the Word of God.”

      This is, as you point out, not only a misleading but extremely arrogant accusation. I freely admit to objecting to the teaching of reprobation on both counts.

      1) Reprobation falls far short of reason and logic, as has been explained in countless ways on these threads. It falls short of the definition of love that God himself gives, it spurns all definitions of justice and it simply does not match up with the character and heart of God as revealed scripture and in Jesus.

      2) It is not a refusal to humbly submit to the Word of God that is behind my rejection of reprobation, but a refusal to submit to one particular interpretation of the Word of God, a.k.a. the traditions of men.

  3. Brian:
    He does not need to give Scripture. It is all based on their definition of sovereign and omniscient.

    As many Calvinist web sites will say “God has absolute control or no control.” They have no room at all in their world view where God creates a world and says “choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve.”

    ps. If they do give Scripture is it “He knows the end from the beginning” and knows “the dice rolled in the lap” (proverbs) and a few other vague, poetic verses that can mean a number or things.

  4. Great article!!

    A few notes:

    On Palmer’s point (8) he refers disparagingly to what he calls “scholastic rationalism”.
    What others would clearly cite as the ability to discern falsehoods by universally standardized rules of logic.

    Calvin himself however is not short of a reliance upon “scholastic rationalism” on the subject of reprobation.
    Here he applies the principle of Mutual Exclusivity (which states [A] mutually excludes [NOT A] – and vise versa)

    -quote
    Many professing a desire to defend the deity from an individual charge admit the doctrine of election, but deny that anyone is reprobated. This they do ignorantly and childishly, since there could be no election without its opposite, reprobation. (Institutes 3:23:1)

    Since Calvin is logical enough to acknowledge this principle – it should be easy to extrapolate its application further on this subject.

    Take for example, Palmer’s point (7)
    Calvin’s god does not *EFFECTUATE* sin and unbelief in the same way He *EFFECTUATES* good deeds and faith.

    This statement is actually “scholastically rational” (i.e. logically consistent with Theological Determinism).

    It acknowledges that part of Calvin’s god’s process for RENDERING-CERTAIN an event – is to *EFFECTUATE* that event – or *EFFECTUATE* the means which support the flow of that event.

    So we can further apply that these examples of “scholastic rationalism” to that which Palmer acknowledges in (7) :

    It logically follows – that part of Calvin’s god’s process for things NOT RENDERED-CERTAIN – is to NOT *EFFECTUATE* them.
    Or to make the means through which they flow NOT *EFFECTUAL*
    And now we can apply this to how Calvin’s god RENDERED-CERTAIN Adam’s choice to disobey.

    He made the flow of neurological impulses within Adam’s brain moving towards the choice to disobey *EFFECTUAL*
    He made the flow of neurological impulses within Adam’s brain moving towards the choice to obey NOT *EFFECTUAL*

    Controlling the *EVENTUALITY* of secondary means – is part of the process Calvin’s god uses to RENDER-CERTAIN events.
    All of which confirms what “scholastic rationalism” says about Theological Determinism.

    In Theological Determinism – the creature is not the determiner of his determinations.
    That which determines the creature’s determinations is outside of the creature’s control.
    Because it is Calvin’s god who determines them.
    And also makes their Mutually Exclusive contrary(s) NON-EFFECTUAL

    1. br.d,
      You have such a fancy way of saying “they want their cake and eat it too.”

      God controls all things, determines all things, ordains all things…. including sin…except sin.

      He does not “effectually” cause sin the way He effectually causes goodness. Why? Cuz we say so!

      If that makes no sense it is cuz you are trying to use logical brain God gave you —- so dont be logical!

      1. Good one FOH!
        Yes – they often criticize logic – calling it “man’s” logic etc.
        But they are actually not short of using it in the process of coming to their own conclusions.

        They just don’t like it being used to shine a spotlight on any of their self-contradictions or magical word tricks. :-]

  5. Btw, Eric, I’m very jealous of your ‘finds’. I have read both of these books online, but would love to have hard copies! I try to stay out of used bookstores, as I have enough books in my basement to start my own. Ah, how I love old books . . .

  6. “For the traditionalist, the repentant person who trusts Jesus by believing the Gospel is saved and the non-believer rejecting Jesus is condemned to hell.”

    Calvinists say this also – they just add more details that Traditionalists would rather not deal with.

  7. “Thus decretal theology is actually a philosophy masquerading as theology” states Keathley, as theologians seek to divine “the mind of God by discerning the logical order of the decrees… .”

    So we have John 6:37 – “All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me,…”

    That which the the Father gives precedes the act of coming to (believing in) Christ. Those given are chosen (elected) by God to be given to Christ. Thus Paul says, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world,..” “Chosen” then given to Christ. No philosophy masquerading as theology on this point. Of course, this then leads to the elect/reprobate divide and to a theology of the means that God uses to ensure the coming of those He gifts to Christ – “…no one can come to Me, unless it has been granted him from the Father.” So, Paul, “…”[God] who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.”

  8. “…according to Keathley, “ … decretal theology has sometimes run roughshod over certain clear teachings of Scripture, particularly in the areas of the extent of the atonement and God’s universal salvific desire.”

    A bold claim. Perhaps, it is Keathley who has run roughshod over certain clear teachings of Scripture or maybe turned a blind eye to them.

    So, anyone want to post Keathley’s argument, so we can see what he does?

    1. rhutchin
      A bold claim. Perhaps, it is Keathley who has run roughshod over certain clear teachings of Scripture or maybe turned a blind eye to them.

      So, anyone want to post Keathley’s argument, so we can see what he does?

      br.d
      This is pretty close to exactly the same statement William Lane Craig makes – why don’t you bone up on his web-site – if you think you can understand rational reasoning.

      1. rhutchin: “So, anyone want to post Keathley’s argument, so we can see what he does?”
        br.d writes, “This is pretty close to exactly the same statement William Lane Craig makes – why don’t you bone up on his web-site – if you think you can understand rational reasoning.”

        Even br.d cannot tell us what Keathley said. I doubt that he even knows what Craig says except for a few pull quotes.

      2. br.d
        “This is pretty close to exactly the same statement William Lane Craig makes – why don’t you bone up on his web-site – if you think you can understand rational reasoning.”

        rhutchin
        Even br.d cannot tell us what Keathley said. I doubt that he even knows what Craig says except for a few pull quotes.

        br.d
        And this from the one who asserts:

        1) When Calvin’s god RENDERS-CERTAIN a given event will never have existence – then nothing (including man) can falsify/negate what Calvin’s god has RENDERED-CERTAIN.

        And

        2) Man can in fact falsify/negate what Calvin’s god has RENDERED-CERTAIN – by bringing that thing into existence – if the man does so -quote “subordinate to” Calvin’s god.

        Given the fact that those two assertions are self-contradictions – a SOT101 participant would be better off pocking himself in the eye with a pencil then to waste his time deliberating anything LOGICAL with such a person.

        Play-acting being a LOGICAL person in this case becomes pretty obvious. :-]

      3. br.d writes, “Play-acting being a LOGICAL person in this case becomes pretty obvious.”

        Even br.d still cannot tell us what Keathley said. I doubt that he even knows what Craig says except for a few pull quotes.

      4. br.d
        “Play-acting being a LOGICAL person in this case becomes pretty obvious.”

        rhutchin
        Even br.d still cannot tell us what Keathley said. I doubt that he even knows what Craig says except for a few pull quotes.

        br,d
        Jesus teaches me not to cast pearls where they are simply going to be trampled on.

  9. “{Keathley] summarizes Calvin’s implications of this “dreadful” decree, by saying, “Calvinism teaches that the ultimate reason a person dies lost is because God decides against him, not the other way around.”

    Given that God has the power to save a person up to the moment of death despite anything a person does, He is the ultimate reason a person dies lost.

    1. rhutchin
      Given that God has the power to save a person up to the moment of death despite anything a person does, He is the ultimate reason a person dies lost.

      br.d
      Given that Calvin’s god (per compatibilism) has the power to design humans to not sin at all – and do it in a way that they are all “so-called” free – then if follows Calvin’s god is the ultimate reason sin and evil.

      1. rh writes:

        “Given that God has the power to save a person up to the moment of death despite anything a person does, He is the ultimate reason a person dies lost.”

        More accurately: “Given that God has the SOLE power to save a person, and has chosen which ones he will save long before any were ever born or could choose to sin or not sin, He is the ultimate reason a person dies lost.”

        ‘up to the moment of death despite anything a person does’ is a meaningless phrase, since God predetermined who would be saved, and ‘anything a person does’, according to Calvinism, has nothing to do with it. So why even say such a thing?

        Simply another demonstration of the Calvinists desperate desire to hide the true nature of his theology. Gosh darn it – at least according to Calvinism, 😉 – why don’t they just come out and say that God chose the select few he wanted to save, and to hell with the rest? That is the true nature of their theology, yet all the live long day they seek to hide it.

        Well, I would be ashamed of such a God, too; but that’s why I don’t worship such a travesty, such an abomination to all that is good, loving, just and merciful.

      2. TS00 writes, “Simply another demonstration of the Calvinists desperate desire to hide the true nature of his theology.”

        TS00 also doesn’t like Calvinism but cannot argue against that which Jesus said.

      3. rhutchin
        TS00 also doesn’t like Calvinism but cannot argue against that which Jesus said.

        br.d
        We never make the silly mistake of conflating Calvinism with what Jesus said

      4. br.d writes, “Given that Calvin’s god (per compatibilism) has the power to design humans to not sin at all – and do it in a way that they are all “so-called” free – then if follows Calvin’s god is the ultimate reason sin and evil.”

        That’s basically the message of Genesis 2-3 where God creates man, declares one tree off limits, and then gives Satan freedom to enter the garden. Yet, God did not force Adam to eat the fruit – “the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took from its fruit and ate; and she gave also to her husband with her, and he ate.”

      5. rhutchin
        That’s basically the message of Genesis 2-3 where God creates man, declares one tree off limits, and then gives Satan freedom to enter the garden.

        br.d
        In Theological Determinism Satan is *ONLY* free to be/do what Calvin’s god RENDERS-CERTAIN he be/do.
        Nothing more – nothing less
        Any Calvinist who paints a cosmetic mask of freedom beyond that is attempting to deceive you.

        rhutchin
        Yet, God did not force Adam to eat the fruit

        br.d
        Calvinists by their own admission do not know the mechanisms Calvin’s god uses to RENDER-CERTAIN that a coin flip will land heads instead of tails.

        Neither do they know the mechanism Calvin’s god uses to RENDER-CERTAIN the coin-flip within Adam’s brain will land as “disobey” rather than landing as “obey”

        And yet – Calvin’s god must have a mechanism for doing this.
        And the Calvinist is certainly not going to assert that Calvin’s god’s decrees have NO force.

        Therefore when a Calvinist asserts the decree is without force – he is blowing smoke.

      6. br.d writes, “Calvinists by their own admission do not know the mechanisms Calvin’s god uses to RENDER-CERTAIN that a coin flip will land heads instead of tails.”

        Of course, neither does br.d or anyone else – “The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the LORD.”

      7. br.d
        Calvinists by their own admission do not know the mechanisms Calvin’s god uses to RENDER-CERTAIN that a coin flip will land heads instead of tails.

        Neither do they know the mechanism Calvin’s god uses to RENDER-CERTAIN the coin-flip within Adam’s brain will land as “disobey” rather than landing as “obey”

        And yet – Calvin’s god must have a mechanism for doing this.
        And the Calvinist is certainly not going to assert that Calvin’s god’s decrees have NO force.

        Therefore when a Calvinist asserts the decree is without force – he is blowing smoke.

        rhutchin
        Of course, neither does br.d or anyone else – “The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the LORD.”

        br.d
        Therefore taking Theological Determinism to its logical conclusion:

        Since it is the case that Calvin’s god cannot make a future coin flip heads-up AND tails-up at the same time.
        Only one of these will be granted existence – and the other NO existence.

        And since falsifying or negating the coin-flip which Calvin’s god has RENDERED-CERTAIN is not available to Adam.

        Then it follows:
        Any other coin-flip within Adam’s brain that would falsify or negate the coin-flip Calvin’s god RENDERED-CERTAIN
        was not available to Adam.

  10. “Decretal theology reduces Christ to the mere instrument by which the decrees are accomplished.”

    Or, as Jesus phrased it, “I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day.” So, even Jesus says that He is God’s instrument to accomplish God’s decrees especially those related to His elect.

    1. rhutchin
      even Jesus says that He is God’s instrument to accomplish God’s decrees

      br.d
      This sentiment would be consistent with an interpretation of scripture which has as its first rule – to affirm Theological Determinism.
      It thus also logically follows that Satan is also reduced to this instrument.

      And since in Augustinian/NeoPlatonist/Gnosticism good and evil are co-equal and co-necessary constituents – standing together in antithesis. Then in Calvinism Jesus and Satan would be co-equal and co-necessary instruments standing together in antithesis.

      1. br.d writes, “This sentiment would be consistent with an interpretation of scripture which has as its first rule – to affirm Theological Determinism.”

        br.d does not like this, but he doesn’t offer an alternative that the Scriptures support.

      2. br.d
        “This sentiment would be consistent with an interpretation of scripture which has as its first rule – to affirm Theological Determinism.”

        rhutchin
        br.d does not like this, but he doesn’t offer an alternative that the Scriptures support.

        br.d
        Just because information presented doesn’t register in a recipients brain – doesn’t mean that information was not presented.
        br.d has acknowledged repeatedly that the general narrative of scripture affirms IN-determinism.

        William Lane Craig notes that ancient Reformed theological agree with this and conclude it as a mystery.
        But then Dr. Craig notes concerning Calvinists today:
        -quote
        By affirming universal, divine determinism and a compatibilistic view of freedom, he abolishes the mystery. …
        When one’s interpretation of Scripture leads one into this sort of cul de sac, it is a good idea to re-assess whether one has, indeed, rightly interpreted Scripture.

      3. “br.d has acknowledged repeatedly that the general narrative of scripture affirms IN-determinism.”

        A claim that br.d seems unable to support from the Scripture.

      4. br.d has acknowledged repeatedly that the general narrative of scripture affirms IN-determinism.
        William Lane Craig notes that ancient Reformed theologians agree with this and conclude it as a mystery.

        rhutchin
        A claim that br.d seems unable to support from the Scripture.

        br.d
        And this would mean that the ancient reformed theologians are unable to support it from scripture also – since they agree. :-]

      5. br.d writes, “And this would mean that the ancient reformed theologians are unable to support it from scripture also – since they agree.”

        Only if they agreed with you. Is that your claim here?

      6. br.d writes, “And this would mean that the ancient reformed theologians are unable to support it from scripture also – since they agree.”

        rhutchin
        Only if they agreed with you. Is that your claim here?

        br.d
        Of course I or William Lane Craig etc don’t agree with reformed theologians on every point – that would be silly.

        But as William Lane Craig details it – they recognized streams of scripture that are IN-deterministic enough to conclude the mater as either contradiction or mystery. The obvious reason for opting for mystery is to avoid opting for contradiction.

        So what was the contradiction that reformed theologians identified?

        That Determinism and IN-determinism are mutually exclusive contraries – and cannot both be the case at the same time.
        One must be true and the other false.
        On this point they and I would agree

        That scripture contains texts which they identified as IN-deterministic enough to warrant their concern of a contradiction
        On the point of identifying scripture that affirms IN-determinism I agree

        Now they opted to call it a mystery rather than opt for contradiction.

        This is where I, Dr. Craig, and others would disagree.

        For example – putting in Dr. Ravi Zacharia’s words when asked about determinism
        -quote:
        “There is not absolute sovereignty over your life”

        But then Dr. Craig rightfully adds how more modern Calvinists have opted for compatiblism:
        -quote
        By affirming universal, divine determinism and a compatibilistic view of freedom, he abolishes the mystery.
        Understanding how determinism and a compatibilistic 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: human beings are not totally determined by God.

  11. No individuals were decreed before creation unto salvation or damnation. No individials existed before creation to choose from except members of the Godhead. God is not locked into and eternally limited to one set future forever… experiencing an eternal fantasy love with individual stories before creation that must play out only one way after creation.

    No! Scripture clearly reads differently. He says clearly in His Word that those He saves were from those who were not beloved… and they were not His before they were joined to Christ through faith. (Rom 8:9, 9:25). The Father is indeed giving (present tense) those who express that personal faith in His Son. And all are invited and able to do so.

    Only determinism or universalism teaches the force of salvation love onto people which destroys the very definition of a convenant love relationship. It’s very sad people think so little of God in spite of the testimony of Scripture.

    1. Brian,
      You are stepping on their Greek idea of sovereignty and omniscience. But your point here is well made:

      “He says clearly in His Word that those He saves were from those who were not beloved… and they were not His before they were joined to Christ through faith.”

      If He has ordained before eternity began who are His elect, then they are ALREADY and ALWAYS His elect….. there were never “not the beloved.”

      That would make no sense for them to preach that they have moved to (joined) Christ (if….they have always been the elect).

      But there I go again trying to make “logical sense” out of all those hundreds of Scriptures that put it that way.

      1. Luke 5:30-32 says:

        “And the Pharisees and their scribes murmured against his disciples, saying, “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?” And Jesus answered them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick; I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”

        What nonsensical verses, were Calvinism true. God could have so easily avoided the ‘error’ that the vast majority of bible believers have arrived at, had he not constantly suggested that he was seeking to save those who would come.

        He could quite easily have had Jesus state, plainly, ‘I have not come to call all men, but the elect, who have been enabled to hear, to repentance.’

        But that is not the message of love and hope heralded by angels as good news which shall be to all people. That is not the offer of salvation freely made so that none need perish in their sin, but any may turn from wickedness and live.

        I honestly don ‘t know what rhutchin is about, if he is just a troll doing his job, or what; but to those who have been led here by the Spirit to be relieved of a dreadful, hopeless theology, I say there truly is good news! God does indeed love all men, does indeed desire to save all, and will indeed save any who will turn from sin and trust in him – no controlling strings attached.

      2. TS00 writes, “What nonsensical verses, were Calvinism true.”

        Even Calvinist says that God saves sinners – “you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. But God, 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.”

      3. TS00
        “What nonsensical verses, were Calvinism true.”

        rhutchin
        Even Calvinist says that God saves sinners – “you were dead in your trespasses and sins,

        br.d
        Right – but Calvinist language is so much double-speak.
        Dr. Flowers rightly refers to the metaphor of Calvin’s god lighting the house on fire only so he can come and save it.
        Calvinism turns scripture into an elaborately choreographed puppet show..

        This is why William Lane Craig says:

        -quote
        Universal, divine determinism makes reality into a farce. On the deterministic view, the whole world becomes a vain and empty spectacle. There are no free agents in rebellion against God, whom God seeks to win through His love……The whole spectacle is a charade whose only real actor is God Himself.

      4. br.d writes, “Right – but Calvinist language is so much double-speak….Calvinism turns scripture into an elaborately choreographed puppet show.”

        Bold claims without scriptural support or any other support for that matter.

      5. br.d
        Right – but Calvinist language is so much double-speak…Calvinism turns scripture into an elaborately choreographed puppet show.”

        rhutchin
        Bold claims without scriptural support or any other support for that matter.

        br.d
        And that is why Calvinists evade any LOGIC which shines a spotlight on their self-contradictions and their *AS-IF* thinking mode.

        Language is easy to manipulate – as Calvinists readily show us.
        Logic on the other hand requires standards to which all parties commit themselves for the sake of honesty.
        Butthe Calvinist needs to continually shift the weights on the balancing scale of language and logic in order to get what he wants.

        The Non-Calvinist who is open minded can discern these things
        And should be obvious why a Calvinist would perceive them as unprovable.

      6. br.d writes, “…that is why Calvinists evade any LOGIC which shines a spotlight on their self-contradictions and their *AS-IF* thinking mode.”

        Of course, br.d provides no examples of alleged “self-contradictions and their *AS-IF* thinking mode.” I’ll guess and say that he has none.

      7. Roger, I am wondering if your conversation and repetition of the same ole arguments with Br.D are of any benefit to him or anyone else on these blog posts. I don’t see them as contributing to the discussion of the main OP topic… but clog up the comment section and hinder those who want to discuss the main topic. It appears to me you both have a hard time letting the other person have the last word. I appeal to you to limit such reactions that are not connected to the main topic.

      8. Thanks Brian,
        I do understand the issue – and when its obvious dialog has degenerated to that level I will be the one to pull the plug.
        You and FOH both have been considerate to share the same concern – and I agree.

        I’ll refer to that concern in my dialogs with rhutchin as soon as its obviously degenerated to that point.
        And thanks again for the alert!

      9. br.d
        that is why Calvinists evade any LOGIC which shines a spotlight on their self-contradictions and their *AS-IF* thinking mode.”

        rhutchin
        Of course, br.d provides no examples of alleged “self-contradictions and their *AS-IF* thinking mode.” I’ll guess and say that he has none.

        br,d
        Any open minded person – who is a reader of SOT101 posts knows how to see through that.
        This statement simply describes LOGICAL conclusions one person can’t acknowledge.

        And given a person who can assert at one minute – that man cannot falsify/negate what is RENDERED-CERTAIN by Calvin’s god. And then the next minute assert the opposite – reveals why.

      10. Br.D, I am wondering if your conversation and repetition of the same ole arguments with Roger are of any benefit to him or anyone else on these blog posts. I don’t see them as contributing to the discussion of the main OP topic… but clog up the comment section and hinder those who want to discuss the main topic. It appears to me you both have a hard time letting the other person have the last word. I appeal to you to limit such reactions that are not connected to the main topic.

      11. I totally agree – Brian and thanks!
        See my response to your post to rhutchin on this.

        Again – my thanks

      12. br.d writes:
        “Right – but Calvinist language is so much double-speak….Calvinism turns scripture into an elaborately choreographed puppet show.”

        rh writes:
        “Bold claims without scriptural support or any other support for that matter.”

        What a laugh! How can one produce scriptural support to prove an unscriptural claim to not be true? That’s like asserting, ‘You have no scriptural support to prove that shape-shifting reptiles do not exist.’ Yeah, it is pretty tough to provide scriptural support that something that is not in scripture is false. This is like the antithesis of logic.

      13. Just a troll doing his job – or one led here by the Spirit to be relieved of a dreadful, hopeless theology

        Given the endless stream of imaginative inventions pulled out of a magicians hat
        Which eventually reveal themselves as self-contradictions.

        And on top of that – given the endless insistence on an inability to ever be wrong.
        One of these has a much higher probability of being the case. :-]

    2. brianwagner writes, “Only determinism or universalism teaches the force of salvation love onto people which destroys the very definition of a convenant love relationship. It’s very sad people think so little of God in spite of the testimony of Scripture.”

      Yet John 6:37 – “All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me…” – puts election (the gift) before belief (coming to Christ). Then, 6:65 – “…no one can come to Me, unless it has been granted him from the Father.” places election before the ability to come to Christ.

      1. Roger… God does have to take the initiative… Praise His Name that He takes that initiative with all… and yet giving that ability to come to all doesn’t make coming/loving necessary. Love must be freely initiated and freely accepted.

      2. Indeed Brian.

        Most people would say that is inherent in the definition of love.

        Funny….one of the things that is driven home during teaching by Calvinists and non….. is that “love is not an emotion!!!” (Christian teachers are tired of the “love as long as we both shall feel it” kind of love. They then go on with the rest of the saying…

        “Love is not an emotion. It’s a choice.”

        But…ahem…. I guess that is only when loving your wife or your enemy, not when it comes to loving God. Per Calvinism, THAT love is not a choice but is either given to you or not.

      3. FOH
        But…ahem…. I guess that is only when loving your wife or your enemy, not when it comes to loving God. Per Calvinism, THAT love is not a choice but is either given to you or not.

        br,d
        The “Many” are designed specifically to be vessels of reprobation.
        The “Few” are specifically designed to be vessels of eternal life.

        As David hunt would say “What love is this”?

      4. brianwagner writes, “…yet giving that ability to come to all doesn’t make coming/loving necessary.”

        As it is true that, ““All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me,…” then those who do not come to Christ were not part of God’s gift to Christ. I can live with that. That “God does have to take the initiative…Praise His Name that He takes that initiative with all… ” does not mean that such initiative includes including all as part of His gift to Christ. That’s what Calvinism says – God determines whom to include in His gift to Christ.

      5. rhutchin writes:
        “then those who do not come to Christ were not part of God’s gift to Christ. I can live with that.”

        I wonder if you would so glibly say that if you did not ‘happen’ to consider yourself one of the lucky chosen ones. I suspect not:

        God to Rhutchin: ‘Go to hell, I didn’t choose you’.
        Rhutchin: ‘I can live with that. Thanks for the sunshine . . . while it lasted.’

        Yeah, right.

      6. TS00
        “then those who do not come to Christ were not part of God’s gift to Christ. I can live with that.”

        br.d
        What is not being said here is:
        Those whose neurological impulses Calvin’s god has RENDERED-CERTAIN to come to Christ.
        And the factors which RENDER-CERTAIN all human neurological impulses are outside of their control.

      7. br.d wries:
        “What is not being said here is:
        Those whose neurological impulses Calvin’s god has RENDERED-CERTAIN to come to Christ.
        And the factors which RENDER-CERTAIN all human neurological impulses are outside of their control.”

        And how is it that any reasonable person could ‘live with that’? None could, without, like our Calvinist friend, clinging to implausible, illogical premises while refusing to face their contradictory nature. It is a deliberate, willful ignorance, necessary to silence the otherwise inescapable voice of reason that tells us such things are not good, not just and not loving. Thankfully, they are also not true.

        The good news is that we do not have to embrace the unthinkable; we do not have to defend God’s cruelty; and we do not have to submit to Calvin’s horrible decree. All are illusory, faulty imaginings of a mere, fallible man.

        I would encourage all to seek out better interpretations, more consistent explanations and find themselves the joyful believer in a glorious salvation truly available to all men. Personally, I am willing to view pretty much anything in this world with a good deal of doubt, but this one thing I know, and no man can take away – God is good, loving, faithful and genuinely desires that all come to him for forgiveness and everlasting life! This is my hope and joy, and gives me peace in a sin-tossed world.

      8. TS00
        You raised an interesting thought in my mind!
        I don’t remember if Dr. Flowers has ever addressed the Calvinist argument about having hope.
        The pretzels the Calvinist has to turn in his mind in order to have a sense of assurance in Christ.
        The thought-blocking techniques the Calvinist mind has to be conditioned in – the taboo thoughts he can’t allow himself to think.
        The psychological effects of Calvinism.

      9. TS00 writes, “I wonder if you would so glibly say that if you did not ‘happen’ to consider yourself one of the lucky chosen ones. I suspect not: ”

        John 6:37 seems clear to me. “All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me…” The first action belongs to God – “All that the Father gives Me…” and it leads to the second action – “…shall come to Me…” Can you get the verse to say something different?

      10. rh writes:
        “John 6:37 seems clear to me. “All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me…” The first action belongs to God – “All that the Father gives Me…” and it leads to the second action – “…shall come to Me…” Can you get the verse to say something different?”

        One does not need to attempt to ‘get the verse to say something different’, which is a rather telling statement in itself as to how rh handles scripture. 😉

        The promise does not state who those the Father gives are. The Calvinist baldly asserts that it is a group of randomly preselected few determined in eternity past. I say hogwash.

        Scripture repeatedly tells us that those who are God’s children are all those who do, have and ever will believe. God foreknows all such, and it is those who will be safely delivered into Jesus’ fold, granted forgiveness of sin and life everlasting.

        It is pure distortion, presupposition and reading into scripture what is not ever said that creates Calvin’s phantasmic elect and equally illusory reprobate. We are all equally loved by God, and fully capable of understanding who he is, believing in him, turning from a life of sinful selfishness and becoming a new creation in the pattern of Jesus.

      11. TS00,
        I feel for you…trying to discuss with him.

        it is noticeable how MANY times he quotes that verse. One might show hundreds verses …. and the answer ….that verse. I mean wow.

        Secondly, of course you are right…. the Father gives to Christ the ones who believe.

        Notice lastly that a HUGE theology is built…. so often funneling down to this one verse repeated over and over. I would be very afraid and insecure if I had all my theology built on one verse like this that is easily interpreted in another way.

        ps. The answer to this post (wait for it….) will be to quote that verse again!

      12. What disturbs me is that (some) Calvinists know there are other interpretations of these prooftext verses, but they attempt to hide this truth from the pew. I cannot tell you how many times a forlorn Calvinist has sadly accepted a distorted picture of God because they were told it was the only possible meaning of some verse or another.

        That is the crux of the deception – there is no such thing as ‘only one possible interpretation’ of words, which is why logic and the evidence of the creation must support our belief system. If something seems off, if our spirit or heart tells us ‘This surely cannot be so’ we need to hang on and wrestle with it until we come to a better understanding. Even if it leaves us walking with a limp.

      13. Many moons ago as a young fellow I dated a girl from our church whose mother was a staunch Catholic.
        The first time I met her – she looked at me and said “you can disagree with me if you want to – but if you do you are wrong”.

        I would later bump into Calvinists – and recognize the fruit doesn’t fall far from the tree! :-]

      14. TS00 writes, “What disturbs me is that (some) Calvinists know there are other interpretations of these prooftext verses,…”

        So, how about a second interpretation of John 6:37?

      15. And as you have so often demonstrated, wrestling with the enormity of scriptures that far exceed the few distorted Calvinist go-to’s leads to a robust picture of a good, loving, merciful God that genuinely loves and desires to give life to all who humbly and sincerely desire righteousness – and all that it once implied, such as justice, equity, seeking the common welfare, etc. rather than personal gain.

      16. TS00,
        It comes from their insistence that man is “too-dead” to hear God (TD) (get it…Total Depravity…Too Dead).

        We do not see this idea in Scripture nor in real life. Non-believers make truly loving, selfless decisions all the time. Many (unbelieving) people have risked (or given) their lives to free slaves, sex-trafficked, or imprisoned people.

        In fact, all that is need to disprove TD is that one non-believer do one gracious, or patient, or kind, or loving thing.

        Normally he/she should be “too-dead” to do that…. or totally depraved (doing wickedness all the time). Nah…. that’s not what we see.

        Total Depravity is where it all starts, and it is just not Scriptural, logical, or visible in the world.

      17. FOH writes, “It comes from their insistence that man is “too-dead” to hear God (TD) (get it…Total Depravity…Too Dead).”

        How do you understand John 6:65 – “…no one can come to Me, unless it has been granted him from the Father”? What label would you give to a person before God grants the person the ability to come to Jesus?

      18. FOH writes, “it is noticeable how MANY times he quotes that verse. One might show hundreds verses …. and the answer ….that verse.”

        That’s because everyone seems to be afraid to deal with the verse – other than the Calvinist.

        Then, “Secondly, of course you are right…. the Father gives to Christ the ones who believe.”

        A little dyslexic, I guess. The Father gives to Christ and then they believe. What Bible translation are you reading from?

      19. TS00 writes, “The promise does not state who those the Father gives are.”

        It says, “all,” and that it is these who come to Christ. All means “all” no matter how you slice it.

        Then, “The Calvinist baldly asserts that it is a group of randomly preselected few determined in eternity past. I say hogwash. ”

        That God “gives” anyone to Christ requires that He choose whom to give. Doesn’t it?

        Then, “Scripture repeatedly tells us that those who are God’s children are all those who do, have and ever will believe.”

        In 6:37, we are told that those who believe are first given by God to Christ.

        Then, “It is pure distortion, presupposition and reading into scripture what is not ever said that creates Calvin’s phantasmic elect and equally illusory reprobate.”

        What do you call those not given by God to Christ?

      20. rhutchin
        It says, “all,” and that it is these who come to Christ. All means “all” no matter how you slice it.

        reformedsotereriology101
        April 12, 2016 at 5:40 pm
        when it says…..”all”, it means Jews and Gentiles, it in no way means everyone without exception

        jtleosala
        November 23, 2018 at 10:12 pm
        John 15:9-10
        the Jews particularly His disciples. It does not refer to the entire human race

        br.d
        All means “all” no matter how you slice it – wink-wink! :-]

      21. br.d writes, “All means “all” no matter how you slice it – wink-wink! ”

        It does not matter whether one defines “all” as each and every individual or as Jew and gentile, the result is the same – “All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me,…” The giving by God to Christ still precedes believing in Christ. Thank you for affirming this.

      22. rhutchin
        It does not matter whether one defines “all” as each and every individual or as Jew and gentile, the result is the same – “All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me

        br.d
        We could easily use Calvin’s interpretation of ALL where he says it means -quote “ALL conditions of men”
        In that case – ALL is not a referent to persons – but ALL is a referent to conditions (e.g, jews and gentiles).

        So in this case the father does not give ALL persons without exception – he only gives persons having ALL conditions.

        Isn’t Calvinist interpretation fun! :-].

      23. br.d writes, “So in this case the father does not give ALL persons without exception – he only gives persons having ALL conditions. ”

        God gives “all” to Christ. We can see this as God giving Jews and gentiles to Christ or individuals – there is no condition that must be met other than that one be a sinner in need of salvation. Regardless whom God gives to Christ it is still true that those He gives to Christ – “all” – will come to Christ (none will be lost). Even you have not objected to this.

      24. br.d
        “So in this case the father does not give ALL persons without exception – he only gives persons having ALL conditions. ”

        rhutchin
        God gives “all” to Christ….etc

        br.d
        Calvinist interpretations as well as rationalizations of ALL in one verse can be used in another.

        How would Calvin’s interpretation of ALL play out in this verse:
        Out of those whom the father gives – ALL will be Jews and gentiles – but NOT ALL will come to Christ.

        I won’t belabor this any longer – but I’m laughing at the irony – and rest assured SOT101 readers will also :-]

      25. br.d writes, “Calvinist interpretations as well as rationalizations of ALL in one verse can be used in another.
        How would Calvin’s interpretation of ALL play out in this verse:
        Out of those whom the father gives – ALL will be Jews and gentiles – but NOT ALL will come to Christ.
        I won’t belabor this any longer – but I’m laughing at the irony…”

        No irony here; just poor scholarship. He is wise not to pursue this, but denying reality accomplishes nothing but the perpetuation of false beliefs.

      26. believe in the light then given to Christ then continually believing…
        John 4:14 NKJV — “but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”
        John 7:37-39 NKJV — On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.
        John 12:36 NKJV — “While you have the light, believe in the light, that you may become sons of light.”

      27. brianwagner writes, “believe in the light then given to Christ then continually believing…
        John 4:14 NKJV…John 7:37-39 NKJV….John 12:36 NKJV…”

        That.s fine so now you just need to harmonize your verses with John 6 (and other verses). When you do that, let us know what you get. Maybe you can come to a different conclusion than the Calvinists; maybe not.

      28. Already done for you Roger as you must have forgotten. If you want to discuss it again, email me. Let’s try to keep the focus on reprobation of some as taught in Scripture.

        The idea of “giving” some is connected. But John 6 use of the present tense “gives” and no mention anywhere of precreation divine activity of election or reprobation, so don’t read that into this passage as if it’s a foundational passage on the subject… unless you want to be accused of eisegesis.

      29. brianwagner writes, “Already done for you Roger as you must have forgotten. ”

        I remember your efforts on 6:44 where you had to add new text (an eisegetical technique) to get to your conclusion. I don’t remember you saying anything about 6:37.

        Then, “But John 6 use of the present tense “gives” and no mention anywhere of precreation divine activity of election or reprobation, so don’t read that into this passage as if it’s a foundational passage on the subject…”

        That’s not the issue. The present tense (gives) still precedes the future tense (will come). Thus we know that God’s giving to Christ guarantees that the person given will come. That God gives requires that God choose (elect) the person He gives. However, you are correct to note that the verse says nothing about the timing of God’s election of those He then gives to Christ followed by those given believing. So your verses related to “light,” even if we allow to occur prior to God’s giving would still be dependent on God’s giving prior to that light affecting belief in the person.. No eisegesis here that I see.

      30. Roger, you are trying to put giving before believing, but God is giving to Christ those that are looking to Him and believing in Him. I’m sorry you keep ignoring the clear evidence of Light then Faith then Life (which includes a continuing to believe after it begins).

        Light then Faith then Life!

        Jhn 1:9, 12 NKJV – 9 That was the true Light which gives light to every man coming into the world…. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name:
        Jhn 12:36 NKJV – “While you have the light, believe in the light, that you may become sons of light.”
        Jhn 20:31 NKJV – but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.
        Gal 3:26 NKJV – For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
        1Pe 1:23, 25 NKJV – having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever, … Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you.

        Reformed theology posits a fake “regeneration” that makes no-one immediately a child of God, nor does it immediately give everlasting life! What kind of birth does not make one a child or give life? Very silly… besides being a clear rejection and twisting of clear Scripture teaching.

        For the Calvinist regeneration is kinda like a drug that had been before willfully refused by the woman that a man offered it to, along with his proposal of marriage to her… but then he slips it into her drink without her knowing and she immediately accepts his next proposal of marriage.

        Now does that sound like true love? And you can call a drugged woman’s “yes” her “personal responsibility” even though she was unable to do other because of a change the “drug” made in her, when it was given during the time she was still firmly rejecting the one making the proposal who was slipping her the drug without her understanding.

        I see no personal willing acceptance of that woman… nor do I see love in the one who caused the change in her instantly upon her using that drug.

      31. brianwagner writes, “you are trying to put giving before believing, but God is giving to Christ those that are looking to Him and believing in Him.”

        OK. You know Greek – break the text down for me to establish your point.

        Then, “Reformed theology posits a fake “regeneration” that makes no-one immediately a child of God, nor does it immediately give everlasting life!”

        I don’t think you do that either. Nonetheless, Calvinism takes John 3 to define regeneration (born again) that then enables a person to both see and enter the kingdom of God. After the new birth, the person is able to believe and that belief conveys eternal life and makes one a child of God. The non-Calvinist perhaps you, has a person believing before he can be born again so belief does not convey life or make one a child of God.

        Then, “For the Calvinist regeneration is kinda like a drug that had been before willfully refused”

        Yep, That’s why Calvinist use Lazarus as an example.

      32. He does Roger… He “determines”. It was not eternally immutably predetermined… which would contradict with the word “determines”. And we’ve been around this barn before. 😉

        You can have the last word in this thread telling me that “determines” doesn’t contradict already “determined”. But logic and grammar says it does. One is a decision before creation and one is a decision about that same thing not made before and after the person freely expresses faith. Blessings.

      33. This is a good response Brian,
        Calvinists sure do use a lot of word games to trick themselves into having a false sense of autonomy.

      34. brianwagner writes, “He “determines”. It was not eternally immutably predetermined… which would contradict with the word “determines”. And we’ve been around this barn before.”

        Yes, and we both know that the word, “determines,” has various meanings. It can mean that God is the one who is in control and who rules all things without regard to the timing of His decisions or it can mean that God determines events in the course of time. I use the word one way and you use it another. There is no contradiction in our separate, unique applications of the word.

  12. Reprobation is Scriptural. The verses below speaks for itself about this doctrine: It is never a speculation.

    1. Esau was hated by God since inside the womb of his mother according to Romans 9:13 “As it is written, “Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated”.

    The ending of Esau and his descendants have been figured out already in Obadiah 1:18 “The house of Jacob shall be a fire, and the house of Joseph a flame; but the house of Esau shall be a stubble; they shall kindle them and devour them, and NO survivor shall remain in the house of Esau, for the Lord has spoken”.

    2. The “Tares” (reprobates) remain as “Tares” (reprobates) and have not given any chance at the end of their future to be saved from hell fire according to :

    Matt. 13:30 “But let both grow together until the harvest, and at this time of harvest I will say to the reapers, “First gather together the “Tares” (reprobates) and bind them in bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat (elect) into My barn (heaven)

    3. The “goats” (reprobates) their future have been marked already according to:

    Matt. 25:41 “Then He will say to those on the left hand (the “goats”-reprobates) Depart from Me you cursed into everlasting fire prepared for you (meaning it was already decreed before time) for the devil and his angels”.

    4. The “swine” (reprobates) the pearl (gospel, Salvation) has not been intended for them according to:

    Matt. 7:6 “… nor cast your pearls before the “swine” (reprobates) lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces”.

    5. Jesus Christ has declared already that Heaven is less populated than in Hell. He said “for few finds it” according to :

    Matt. 7:13-14 “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way (meaning NOT EASY that man can access, except if there is a total rescue coming from God) which leads to life, and there are FEW who find it.”

    It means that people doing evangelism has no capacity nor power to convert the reprobates. Even if we will send more harvesters in the field it is still beyond their control nor the power to invert God’s decreed destiny for the reprobates.

    6. The “chaff” (reprobates) is an emblem of worthlessness according to Psalm 1:4 “The ungodly are not so, but are like a “chaff” (reprobates) which the wind drives away.

    7. Judas Iscariot (a reprobate) is destined to perish – Jesus Christ tagged him as the “son of Perdition”

    John 17:12 “… and non of them is lost except the son of perdition that the scripture might be fulfilled”.

  13. Reprobation is Scriptural not a speculation. Here are some additional verses that attest to this doctrine.

    1. Jannes and Jambres were magicians as referenced during Moses’ time, probably they were one of Pharaoh’s magicians that Moses encountered in Egypt . The descriptions concerning them has been revealed by the apostle Paul to Timothy.

    II Tim.3:8-9 “Now as Jannes and Jambres resisted Moses, so do this also resist the truth; men of corrupt minds, disapproved concerning the faith (meaning reprobates). But they will progress no further, for their folly will be manifest to all as theirs also was.

    2. Cain was described by John in his epistle that: Cain was the wicked one which belongs to satan according to I John 3:12

    I John 3:12 “Not as Cain who was the wicked one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his works were evil and his brother’s righteous. (God picked up Abel but dropped Cain)

    Genesis 4:14 “Surely you have driven me out of this day from the face of the ground; and I shall be hidden from your face …” (this is the statement of Cain himself in response to God’s judgment towards him)

    3. Reprobates are destined to Stumble at Jesus Christ according to I Peter 2:8

    I peter 2:8 “And a Stone of Stumbling and a Rock of offense, They (the reprobates) stumble, being disobedient to the word, to WHICH THEY (reprobates) ALSO WERE APPOINTED. (meaning these reprobates have already their destiny and can no longer be reversed or changed in the future)

    4. Reprobate Jews were also destined to perish. Not All Jews will be saved. Only those who came out from Jacob Israel has this guaranty of God’s Covenant with Abraham. This is expressed in Jeremiah 6:30

    Jeremiah 6:30 “People will call them rejected silver (meaning reprobate) because the Lord has rejected them.

    1. jtleosala
      Reprobation is Scriptural not a speculation. Here are some additional verses that attest to this doctrine.

      1. Jannes and Jambres were SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED TO BE
      2. Cain was SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED TO BE
      3. Reprobates are those who are SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED TO Stumble at Jesus Christ….
      4. Reprobate Jews were also SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED TO BE

      br.d
      What criteria does Calvin’s god use to SPECIFICALLY DESIGN the “many” for torment?

      Calvinist John Samuel Feinberg in his book “No One Like Him” tells us.
      -quote:
      “it is the unconditional decree…based on nothing outside of God that moves him to choose one thing or another”

      Saying there is “no one like him” would appear to be an understatement

      However, Mao Zedong, Adolf Hitler, and Joseph Stalin come pretty close to being like him.

      1. What criteria does Calvin’s god use to SPECIFICALLY DESIGN the “many” for torment?

        My Response: There is no criteria. The Bible speaks for itself on the matter. The problem is that the verses that was presented in this thread are being ignored and does not believe on the authority of those verses; instead naming of other personalities were used to counter those verses.

      2. br.d
        What criteria does Calvin’s god use to SPECIFICALLY DESIGN the “many” for torment?

        Calvinist John Samuel Feinberg in his book “No One Like Him” tells us.
        -quote:
        “it is the unconditional decree…based on nothing outside of God that moves him to choose one thing or another”

        jtleosala
        My Response: There is no criteria. The Bible speaks for itself on the matter. The problem is that the verses that was presented in this thread are being ignored and does not believe on the authority of those verses; instead naming of other personalities were used to counter those verses.

        br.d
        No one here should be childish enough to be deceived into assuming Calvinism allows scripture to speak for itself.
        SOT101 readers are mature enough to know that cults can be bible based.

        But thank you for affirming that in Calvinism factors which determine reprobation are totally out of man’s control and based solely and completely on conditions internal to Calvin’s god.

      3. br.d writes, “thank you for affirming that in Calvinism factors which determine reprobation are totally out of man’s control…

        Adam at the fruit and the rest is history. “…through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned–…” and “you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience.”

        Then, “…and based solely and completely on conditions internal to Calvin’s god.”

        “…God works all things after the counsel of His will…”

      4. br.d
        “thank you for affirming that in Calvinism factors which determine reprobation are totally out of man’s control…

        rhutchin
        Adam at the fruit and the rest is history.

        br.d
        Everyone knows the principle of “Cause and effect”
        But only in Calvinism’s double-speak – does the effect cause the effect! :-]

      5. Gotta love Calvinism’s logic:

        What is the cause of whatsoever comes to pass? God’s predetermination. How do you know all things are predetermined? Because they came to pass. And round and round she goes.

      6. TS00 writes, “Gotta love Calvinism’s logic:”

        What is the cause of whatsoever comes to pass? “God works all things after the counsel of His will…” (Ephesians 1)
        How do you know all things are predetermined? “God works all things after the counsel of His will…” (Ephesians 1)

        Calvinist logic says let the Scripture speak for itself.

      7. br.d writes, “Everyone knows the principle of “Cause and effect”
        But only in Calvinism’s double-speak – does the effect cause the effect!”

        Maybe you could identify what you see as the cause and then the effect so that people can understand what you are trying to say? Also, why would this be double-speak (whatever that is).

  14. TS00 to Calvinist

    “I wonder if you would so glibly say that if you did not ‘happen’ to consider yourself one of the lucky chosen ones. I suspect not: ”

    Calvinist
    John 6:37 seems clear to me. “All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me…

    br.d
    The Calvinist has absolutely no idea whether this verse or any other similar verse is applicable to him.
    He could be specifically designed for eternal torment – for Calvin’s god’s good pleasure.
    He could be specifically deceived by Calvin’s god to believe he is not specifically designed for torment.
    Eternal torment is a 100% possibility for every Calvinist.

    His destiny is CERTAIN only within the secret counsel of Calvin’s god
    Verses having to do with salvation/reprobation are all an “uncertain sound” for the Calvinist.

    In order to make the doctrine palatable – his mind is conditioned to assume the good – and thought-block the evil.
    However, as you note TS00 – for those who don’t embrace Calvin – he frequently assumes the evil and not the good.

  15. Been reading along, but just now chiming in.

    Higher up on this thread…

    BrD writes… “Many moons ago as a young fellow I dated a girl from our church whose mother was a staunch Catholic. The first time I met her – she looked at me and said ‘you can disagree with me if you want to – but if you do you are wrong’. I would later bump into Calvinists – and recognize the fruit doesn’t fall far from the tree!”

    That’s because Calvinism is Catholicism.

    1. Phillip
      That’s because Calvinism is Catholicism.

      br.d
      Right-on Phillip!

      NT Write agrees – he calls John Calvin a Catholic with a small “c”. :-]
      In reading history – its easy to see that is the case.

    2. phillip writes, “That’s because Calvinism is Catholicism.”

      Catholicism says that one is saved by faith plus works (keeping the sacraments).
      Calvinism says that one is saved by faith plus nothing – Sola fide.
      So, an important difference. You know this, Right!!!!

      1. phillip writes, “Both worship Augustine.”

        Thanks for recognizing that there is a significant difference between Calvinism and Catholicism. As to worshiping Augustine, that is your opinion (and unsupportable). Certainly, Calvin viewed Augustine’s scholarship highly.

      2. The difference between Calvinism and Catholicism lies within which “version” of Augustine they care to worship.

        Both hold Augustine’s “scholarship” highly. Both consider themselves Augustinians.

        Like my brother, Brian, I will graciously yield the final comment to you.

    3. Phillip
      That’s because Calvinism is Catholicism.

      br.d
      For me, the binding-tie is as you say Augustine.

      But not just Augustine alone.
      More importantly the influence Catholicism had on Augustine – for example Augustine’s prayer to the blessed virgin, in which it is written “May the sins we bring before Almighty God through thee, become pardonable through thee”.

      And Augustine’s insistence “If it had not been that the Holy Catholic church ascribed it, I would not believe it”.

      Catholicism’s premier characteristic is syncretism (the blending of pagan religions).

      English historian, Theodore Maynard, in The story of American Catholicism writes: “It has often been charged… that Catholicism has been overlaid with many pagan incrustations. Catholicism is ready to accept that charge – and to make it her boast. The great god Pan is not really dead, he is baptized.”

      Augustine embracing Catholicism was heavily infected with its practice of syncretism.
      He synchronized the doctrines of Plotinus (NeoPlatonism) and Gnosticism’s doctrine of good-evil dualism into his theology.

      Gnostic good-evil dualism is itself a product of syncretism – incorporating a doctrine of Zou Yan which today is called “yin yang”.

      The Encyclopedia states Zou Yan’s system of good-evil dualism as -quote “a law of moral necessity, and a theodicy of cosmic rule.”

      Augustine enunciates this gnostic good-evil dualism:
      -quote
      “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)

      We see it also in Jonathon Edwards:
      -quote
      “The glory of his goodness…would be faint without them…[evils]…nay, they could scarcely shine forth at all.”

      This is the doctrine of yin-yang good-evil dualism – where all things exist as inseparable co-equal, co-necessary opposites.

      We can see this good-evil dualism in John Piper statements:
      -quote
      God does and does not take pleasure in the wicked.
      God sees through two lenses.
      God has two wills.

      How does this relate to the Calvinist doctrine of reprobation?
      The doctrine of double predestination is simply Augustine’s good-evil dualism synchronized into scripture.

      1. BrD,

        My point was simply to point out that both Catholics and Calvinists are Augustinians. And nothing says Catholicism like Augustinianism.

        I’ve said this before, but I will say it again. All the RCC has to do is start preaching the Calvinist’s version of Augustinianism, and all the little children will go running back home to Mommy.

      2. I believe Mary is also a connection link between the RCC and Islam.
        A connection link between Islam and Calvinism would be Theological Determinism.

  16. Here are another set of Bible verses affirming the doctrine of Reprobation. Reprobation is Scriptural not even a speculation.:

    1. The renderings of “Reprobate” is the word “DISQUALIFIED” according to Apostle Paul. (2 Cor. 13:5-6) and in Titus 1:16

    v.5 Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? unless indeed you are disqualified. (reprobate)

    v. 6 But I trust that you will know that we are not disqualified. (reprobate)

    Titus 1:16 They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified (reprobate) for every good work.

    (Paul will not ever mention this word “disqualify” if this is just fiction. He is not threatening the believers in Corinth like a child, if reprobation is not real. Meaning there are certain groups of people existing who belong to this category)

    2. Reprobates are being personally denied by Jesus Christ. Jesus said: “I never knew you, depart from Me…”

    Matt. 7:23 And then I will declare unto them, I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness”.

    3. Reprobates have been predetermined by God the Father and is being personally uphold by Jesus Christ according to Matt. 11:25-26

    Matt. 11: 25-26 At that time Jesus answered and said, “I thank you Father, Lord of Heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and prudent (the reprobates) and have revealed them to babes. Even so Father, for it seemed good in your sight.

    4. Those who proclaim the gospel have no idea of who are those reprobates, but Jesus knows them according to Luke 14:24

    Luke 14:24 For I say unto you none of those men (reprobates) who were invited shall taste My supper.

    5. Jesus Christ Christ personally knows exactly who are those who belongs to His sheep. Not all human race belongs to Christ’s sheep. The goats (reprobates in sheep clothings) are being distinguished and denied here.

    John 10:26 “But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep, as I said to you.”

    6. We cannot afford to argue with Jesus Christ that Reprobates will not enter heaven even if they will desire for it. The decree that God has for them cannot be reversed by anyone. (Luke 13: 23-24)

    Luke 13:23-24 Then one said to Him, “Lord are there few who are saved?, and He said to them, “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you will seek to enter and will not be able. (meaning those who cannot enter are destined reprobates)

    7. Even the wisdom Literature affirms reprobation according to Prov. 16:4

    Prov. 16:4 The Lord has made all for Himself, Yes even the wicked (reprobates) for the DAY OF DOOM.

    1. In Calvinism the “MANY” are DESIGNED by Calvin’s god specifically for torment

      jtleosala
      Here are another set of Bible verses affirming the doctrine of Reprobation. Reprobation is Scriptural not even a speculation.:

      1. The renderings of those [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god TO BE] “Reprobate” 2 Cor. 13:5-6, Titus 1:16

      v.5 Examine yourselves as to whether you are [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god TO BE] in the faith.

      v. 6 But I trust that you will know that we are not [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god TO BE] disqualified. (reprobate)

      Titus 1:16 [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god] they profess to know God, but in works [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god] they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god as] disqualified (reprobate) for every good work.

      2. Reprobates are [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god TO] being personally denied by Jesus Christ. Jesus said: “I never knew you, depart from Me…”

      Matt. 7:23 And then I will declare unto them [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god], I never knew you; depart from Me, you who [are DESIGNED by Calvin’s god to] practice lawlessness”.

      3. [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god] Reprobates have been predetermined by God the Father and is being personally uphold by Jesus Christ according to Matt. 11:25-26

      Matt. 11: 25-26 At that time Jesus answered and said, “I thank you Father, Lord of Heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and prudent [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god as] (the reprobates) and have revealed them to babes. Even so Father, for it seemed good in your sight.

      4. Those who proclaim the gospel have no idea of who are those [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god as] reprobates, but Jesus knows them according to Luke 14:24

      Luke 14:24 For I say unto you none of those men [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god as] (reprobates) who were invited shall taste My supper.

      5. Jesus Christ Christ personally knows exactly who are those who belongs to His sheep. Not all human race belongs to Christ’s sheep. The goats [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god as] (reprobates in sheep clothings) are being distinguished and denied here.

      John 10:26 “But you do not believe, because you are [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god as] not of My sheep, as I said to you.”

      6. We cannot afford to argue with Jesus Christ that [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god as] Reprobates will not enter heaven even if they will desire for it. The decree that God has for them cannot be reversed by anyone. (Luke 13: 23-24)

      Luke 13:23-24 Then one said to Him, “Lord are there few who are saved?, and He said to them, “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you will seek to enter and will not be able. (meaning those who cannot enter are [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god as] destined reprobates)

      7. Even the wisdom Literature affirms [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god as] reprobation according to Prov. 16:4

      Prov. 16:4 The Lord has made all for Himself, Yes even the [DESIGNED by Calvin’s god as] wicked (reprobates) for the DAY OF DOOM.

      1. Br.D, cannot cite another scripture passage to counter the verses presented in this thread. instead he just inserted his favorite wordings “designed by Calvin’s god” that he was able to pick up from another source without permission – when that thing is never suggested by the verses presented in this thread. It is a manifestation that he cannot afford to go against those verses teaching the doctrine of Reprobation.

      2. jtleosala
        Br.D, cannot cite another scripture passage to counter the verses presented in this thread. instead he just inserted his favorite wordings “designed by Calvin’s god” that he was able to pick up from another source without permission – when that thing is never suggested by the verses presented in this thread. It is a manifestation that he cannot afford to go against those verses teaching the doctrine of Reprobation.

        br.d
        [Designed by Calvin’s god] is never suggested in those verses = TRUE
        [Designed by Calvin’s god] is LOGICALLY CONSISTENT in Calvinism = TRUE

        So now all the LOGICAL SOT101 reader need to is derive a LOGICAL conclusion.

        John Calvin
        -quote:
        “Accordingly as each HAS BEEN CREATED for one of these ends, we [Calvinists] say he has been predestined to life or death.”

        The fact that Calvinists today aren’t honest enough to own their doctrine becomes another tell-tale sign.

      3. br.d writes, “John Calvin
        -quote:
        “Accordingly as each HAS BEEN CREATED for one of these ends, we [Calvinists] say he has been predestined to life or death.”
        The fact that Calvinists today aren’t honest enough to own their doctrine becomes another tell-tale sign.”

        Calvinism says that God is omniscient. God knew when He created the world those who were to be saved (either by His hand or by their own hand w/free will) and He knew the reprobate (those who would freely reject salvation and God would not save). So, Calvin is correct. I don’t see any Calvinist not being honest about this. Did you make this up?

      4. br.d,
        I hope you wont take that bait and fall for this silliness. I did for a few months but no longer pay attention. I think RH does it on purpose and chuckles when people get riled.

        I mean this is just out right ridiculous and should be ignored!!

        “…those who were to be saved (either by His hand or by their own hand w/free will)” [ that is just soooo NOT Calvinism!!]

        “…. and He knew the reprobate (those who would freely reject salvation and God would not save).” [again NOT Calvinism or even close!]

        “So, Calvin is correct. I don’t see any Calvinist not being honest about this. Did you make this up?” [This is just to tease you. Dont fall for it]

        yeah, yeah, I know…. “FOH never offers any answers….yada yada…’

      5. FOH writes, “…those who were to be saved (either by His hand or by their own hand w/free will)” [ that is just soooo NOT Calvinism!!]”

        That’s true but I am willing to allow your “free will” argument to further discussion. God is omniscient and knows the future regardless how we think that future comes about.

      6. FOH
        those who were to be saved (either by His hand or by their own hand w/free will)” [ that is just soooo NOT Calvinism!!]”

        rhutchin
        That’s true but I am willing to allow your “free will” argument to further discussion. God is omniscient and knows the future *REGARDLESS* how we think that future comes about.

        br.d
        No one here is fooled by the omniscience (*AS-IF* by observation) card anymore.

        And we already know Calvin instructs his disciples to -quote “go about your office *AS-IF* nothing is determined in any part”

        So we understand why Calvinists speak an *AS-IF* language.
        Which in today’s vernacular is called double-speak.

        So we’re way beyond being lured down the same old rabbit holes.

        This thread is yours – take the last word.

      7. yes – I could see rhutchin was going into the same old spin again – and pulled the plug
        Let him present his finishing double-speak.

      8. bravo br.d,

        When they start down their “either by God or by your own….” smoke screen trail, it is best to let it go.

      9. Thanks!
        I think you and Brian are right – we all know rhutchins double-speak language tricks simply go nowhere but in circles.
        Its time for me to try to cut them short as soon as possible.

        Otherwise we’re just giving legitimacy to intellectual dishonesty

      10. br.d,
        You do bring a lot to the table from Scripture and from quotes from Fee, Plantinga, and Craig, so that input is welcome!

        I say that RH has not brought any new / pertinent info to the discussion for a loooong time. Rinse, repeat…. John 6:44, Eph 1:11 …and then the classical “well none of you ever offers an alternative to these verses” so why not just repeat them every day when others bring yet another huge passage from Scripture or outside literature?

        TS00 tries with his gentle way of saying…. We should all say, “it appears to me, but I’m open to another idea…” and that helps too (most of us!) Not Calvinists ….who constantly say “this is fact, not speculation!” then quote THEIR chosen interpretation of a verse.

      11. br.d
        “John Calvin
        -quote:
        “Accordingly as each HAS BEEN CREATED for one of these ends, we [Calvinists] say he has been predestined to life or death.”
        The fact that Calvinists today aren’t honest enough to own their doctrine becomes another tell-tale sign.”

        rhutchin
        Calvinism says that God is omniscient. God knew when He created the world those who were to be saved

        br.d
        Irrelevant red-herring (we’re past being deceived by this argument – please don’t waste our time with it any longer)

        rhutchin
        saved (either by His hand *OR* by their own hand w/free will)

        br.d
        FALSE
        The use of an *OR* operator in this statement is LOGICALLY FALSE – no one here is tricked by it.

        rhutchin
        He knew the reprobate (those who would freely reject salvation and God would not save).

        br.d
        Again – its already been established that Calvin’s god DESIGNS the “MANY” for reprobation.
        What do you not understand about the word DESIGNS?

        rhutchin
        I don’t see any Calvinist not being honest about this.

        br.d
        Even when its exemplified in one’s own posts.
        We’ve already established this and we’re way beyond it.

        Since you’re only interest is in having the final word – I won’t belabor this thread.
        Make your finishing statement.

      12. br.d writes, “In Calvinism the “MANY” are DESIGNED by Calvin’s god specifically for torment”

        As affirmed by Paul, “What shall we say then? There is no injustice with God, is there? May it never be!…You will say to me then, “Why does He still find fault? For who resists His will?…What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction? And He did so in order that He might make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory, even us, whom He also called, not from among Jews only, but also from among Gentiles.”

      13. br.d
        “In Calvinism the “MANY” are DESIGNED by Calvin’s god specifically for torment”

        rhutchin
        As affirmed by Paul, “What shall we say then? ….etc

        br.d
        A Calvinist will affirm Calvinism interprets scripture assuming the above – at one minute
        And then he’ll use distancing language to evade it the next.
        Another Calvinist can’t even bring himself to affirm it at all.

        Obviously there is something Calvinists find unpalatable about Calvin’s god DESIGNING the “MANY” for torment.
        Each one swallows the camel differently. :-]

      14. br.d writes:
        “Obviously there is something Calvinists find unpalatable about Calvin’s god DESIGNING the “MANY” for torment.
        Each one swallows the camel differently. :-]”

        Alas, they have no problem accepting the horrible (false) truth, but know that the masses will give them the boot should they find out the horrible (false) truth. ‘As for me’ says the proud Calvinist, ‘I can live with that’, that being God deliberately creating countless persons for eternal conscious torment for no other reason than his own choice.

        Any person who ‘can live with that’ knows nothing about God or love, however many scriptures they can spout.

      15. TS00
        Any person who ‘can live with that’ knows nothing about God or love, however many scriptures they can spout.

        br.d
        This makes perfect sense – the Bible speaks of the conscience seared with a hot-iron.

        Austin Farrer (1904) an Anglican theologian and philosopher, in “Faith and Speculation” warns that every time man attempts to frame God’s providential activity into causal terms, placing God into a chain of sequential causalities, he risks degrading God to the creaturely level, ultimately creating a monstrosity and confusion.

        And when the delineating line between good and evil is breached, and one morphs into the other, making the two almost indistinguishable within the nature and character of God, the expounder is forced to forward his assertions while attempting to reflect benevolence—and confusion is guaranteed.

      16. Knowing what they actually believe, and their insidious little campaign to infiltrate and take over unsuspecting churches by masking their true doctrine, the ‘kingdom’ they are building is one I hope to never live to endure, for it was foretold in scripture: Geneva 2.0.

      17. br.d writes, “A Calvinist will affirm Calvinism interprets scripture assuming the above – at one minute
        And then he’ll use distancing language to evade it the next.
        Another Calvinist can’t even bring himself to affirm it at all.”

        Another bold claim lacking support.

      18. How does one even start with the person who thinks listing off a bunch of scripture verses proves their case?

        Seriously, I refuse to even discuss God with such people. Until they realize that they are merely defending their interpretation of those scriptures, as opposed to a different interpretation, productive conversation cannot take place. It matters not whether you offer your own unique interpretation or the received tradition enforced by threat of tortuous death (orthodoxy), the best we can honestly say is ‘It seems to me . . .’

      19. Yes – I agree – language is just so easy to manipulate.
        And manipulating language is Calvinism’s strong-suit.

        Dr. Gordon Fee
        “Bear in mind that a text without a context is merely a pretext.”

        And the way to accomplish eisegesis is by rationalizations designed to alter context.
        To make context appear to be what one wants it to be.
        And thus force scripture to infer what one wants it to infer.

      20. br.d writes, “And the way to accomplish eisegesis is by rationalizations designed to alter context.
        To make context appear to be what one wants it to be.
        And thus force scripture to infer what one wants it to infer.”

        Of course, br.d is never able to demonstrate that Calvinists do this. He just philosophizes as one might do whose head is in the clouds.

      21. TS00 writes, “How does one even start with the person who thinks listing off a bunch of scripture verses proves their case?
        Seriously, I refuse to even discuss God with such people.”

        You are not one to discuss Scripture with anyone preferring to espouse your personal philosophy instead.

    2. Hi Jtleosala

      Reprobates exist. But I don’t see that they are pre destined to be /stay that way. These scriptures seem to explain who is a reprobate and why they are reprobates.

      Romans 1:28 KJV — And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

      It is because the reject God’s witness of Himself and Christ. There’s no scripture that indicates that anyone is incapable of coming out of that category. Or that some are incapable of falling into that category.

      The scriptures only define what a reprobate is and that in the state of a reprobate one will not enter / is disqualified from entering. There is hope if they Repent!

      Even Paul said.
      1Cor9:27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a CASTAWAY. ( The same greek.word used in Romans above meaning REPROBATE)

      Rom 1:28
      And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate G96 mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

      1Co 9:27
      But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway. G96

      2Co 13:5
      Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates? G96

      2Co 13:6
      But I trust that ye shall know that we are not reprobates. G96

      2Ti 3:8
      Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate G96 concerning the faith.

      Tit 1:16
      They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate. G96

      Heb 6:8
      But that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected, G96 and is nigh unto cursing; whose end is to be burned.

      1. This is good research Clare.

        But I am afraid that JTL and other Calvinists bring to the text the (Greek philosophy) idea that man is “too-dead” to hear Christ call “Come to me all who labor and are heavy burden.”

        They assume “dead in sin” means incapable, even though in Luke 15 the son was “dead” (called that twice by Christ) and still “came to his senses.”

        They assume “dead” means incapable even though we are “dead to sin” (and buried in Christ)…..and still are capable!

        They start with a Reformed definition of a man-made idea Total Depravity…. and assume that man is incapable to “seek first the kingdom of God” (a command Christ gave hundreds or thousands on the mountainside).

        It appears by simple reading of the text that Christ thought they could hear Him.

        Just as…. when He said “Jerusalem Jerusalem….. how I would have gathered you to me….. but you would not.” They were obviously capable, just not willing.

      2. FOH writes, “Just as…. when He said “Jerusalem Jerusalem….. how I would have gathered you to me….. but you would not.” They were obviously capable, just not willing.”

        This is FOH’s personal, unique Bible translation – “…how I would have gathered you to me…” The legitimate translations have, “How often I wanted to gather your children together…”

      3. FOH
        Just as…. when He said “Jerusalem Jerusalem….. how I would have gathered you to me….. but you would not.” They were obviously capable, just not willing.”

        rhutchin
        This is FOH’s personal, unique Bible translation – “…how I would have gathered you to me…” The legitimate translations have, “How often I wanted to gather your children together…”

        br.d
        Interesting how Jesus can communicate a juxtaposition – and one can omit the very part Jesus juxtaposes.

        I *WANTED* to gather your children together…….καὶ ἠθελήσατε οὐκ *YOU WERE NOT WILLING*

        How unfortunate for the poor Calvinist.

        When the savior of the world says “I WANTED to gather…….but YOU WERE NOT WILLING”
        When the savior of the world says “My Sheep hear my voice”.
        When the savior of the world says “Everyone the father gives to me will come to me”

        What the Calvinist hears in Jesus’ words – is what Paul calls an UNCERTAIN SOUND.
        The Calvinist doesn’t know if Jesus *WANTS* this for him or not.

      4. My Response to the statements below are all enclosed inside the bracket.

        CLARE ANSAH
        MARCH 14, 2019 AT 10:47 AM
        Hi Jtleosala

        Reprobates exist. But I don’t see that they are pre destined to be /stay that way. These scriptures seem to explain who is a reprobate and why they are reprobates.

        Romans 1:28 KJV — And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

        It is because the reject God’s witness of Himself and Christ. There’s no scripture that indicates that anyone is incapable of coming out of that category. Or that some are incapable of falling into that category.

        The scriptures only define what a reprobate is and that in the state of a reprobate one will not enter / is disqualified from entering. There is hope if they Repent!

        My Response : [You say Reprobates exist in the pages of Scriptures. Therefore Reprobation is scriptural not just speculation. Romans 1:28 is the disclosure of the nature of those reprobates including their destiny. No one can modify their status anymore because they are destined to be such. Reprobation is Scriptural, not speculation.]

        ——ooo———–

        Even Paul said.
        1Cor9:27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a CASTAWAY. ( The same greek.word used in Romans above meaning REPROBATE)

        My Response : [Paul can do it to keep under his body and bring it to subjection because the grace of God is operating in his life as an elect as an assurance that he will persevere to the end.]

        ——–ooo————

        Rom 1:28
        And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate G96 mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

        My Response : [They cannot afford to retain God in their knowledge due to their original state- a Reprobate, they are the vessels for dishonor created for destruction. God giving them to a reprobate mind in order to establish their destinies. Reprobation is scriptural, not a Speculation.]

        ——–oooo———–

        1Co 9:27
        But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway. G96

        My Response: [[Paul can do it to keep under his body and bring it to subjection because the grace of God is operating in his life as an elect as an assurance that he will persevere to the end.]

        ——–ooo————
        2Co 13:5
        Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates? G96

        2Co 13:6
        But I trust that ye shall know that we are not reprobates. G96

        My Response : [Those who are in Christ are no longer Reprobates and can never be in their future walk with God. Clare Ansah must learn to trust this verse, that you are not a reprobate once you are in union with Christ]

        ——–ooo———-
        2Ti 3:8
        Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate G96 concerning the faith.

        Tit 1:16
        They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate. G96

        My Response : [The very nature of their status as reprobates is being itemized here including the destiny of Jannes and Jambres has been revealed also. Reprobation is Scriptural, not a speculation]

        ——-ooo———

        Heb 6:8
        But that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected, G96 and is nigh unto cursing; whose end is to be burned.

        My Response : [The destiny of the reprobate’s end is to be burned according to the above verse. Not all people on earth will go to heaven. Reprobates will go to hell. Therefore Reprobation is scriptural, not speculation.]

      5. Jtleo and BrD… I deleted part of the conversation that brought ad hominem accusations directed against specific individuals not necessary or helpful to edification in my opinion.

  17. Hi everyone,

    Is verse 40 of John chapter 6 the answer to the question of whom The Father gives to Jesus?

    .40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that EVERY ONE which seeth the Son, AND BELIEVETH on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.

    Also Jesus came for the Lost Sheep of Isreal, so then at this time the “all that the Father gives me” scripture, seems to me to be talking about a set of believers out of The Elect ( ie Isreal).

    The Father was giving Jesus, believing sheep (Jews) out of The Elect Sheep (Isreal) who were believing that Jesus was The Messiah the Father was talking about all along.

    I say Sheep refers to Israel, because gentiles are not called Sheep.

    Jeremiah 50:6 KJV — My people hath been lost sheep: their shepherds have caused them to go astray, they have turned them away on the mountains: they have gone from mountain to hill, they have forgotten their restingplace.

    The Shepherds in Jesus time were the Pharisees etc.

    Luke 15:
    1¶Then drew near unto him all the publicans and sinners for to hear him.
    2And the Pharisees and scribes murmured, saying, This man receiveth sinners, and eateth with them.
    3And he spake this parable unto them, saying,
    4¶What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?
    5And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing.
    6And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.
    7I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.

    THE PUBLICANS & SINNERS are called LOST SHEEP. THEY ARE THE LOST within The Elect (Isreal)

    IT IS ONLY AFTER JESUS DEATH & RESURRECTION.. that ALL MEN are DRAWN AS CHRIST IS LIFTED UP.

    The Father is not said to be drawing BUT JESUS:

    John 12:32 KJV — And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me. 33 This he said, signifying what death he should die.

    So it seems to be that Jesus is drawing ALL MEN through the gospel. ANY THAT BELIEVE become His.

    This to me means that the Father’s drawing and giving scripture, is slightly obsolete (not intending to be blasphemous!). But if it should be applied after Jesus’s Death, it should be applied within His DECLARED WILL in 6 vs40

    “And this is the will of him that sent me, that EVERY ONE which seeth the Son, AND BELIEVETH on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.”

    PS I also know that Jesus’s earthly ministry extended to the gentiles when he saw Faith… so I am not limiting His heart…..but they are not the lost sheep in context.

    1. Clare Ansah writes, “Is verse 40 of John chapter 6 the answer to the question of whom The Father gives to Jesus?

      .40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that EVERY ONE which seeth the Son, AND BELIEVETH on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.”

      Or it could be the definition of the one who comes – To come to Christ means to believe on Him. This is the way the Calvinist takes it.

      But let’s accept your position. When we come to v44, ““No one can come to Me, unless the Father who sent Me draws him;…” we get, ““No one can come to Me, unless he first believe in me so that the Father who sent Me can give him to me and then draw him to me.” In that case, we might ask what purpose is serving by God giving to Christ those who believe and then drawing that person to Christ (or vice versa, drawing and then giving). Does coming to Christ mean accepting Him as Lord or something like that?

      Then, “Also Jesus came for the Lost Sheep of Isreal, so then at this time the “all that the Father gives me” scripture, seems to me to be talking about a set of believers out of The Elect ( ie Isreal). ”

      I agree. After the cross, we have this from Paul, “…the Gentiles are fellow heirs and fellow members of the body, and fellow partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel,…” Having the complete picture, we see that “No one” whether Jew or gentile can come to Christ without, as you claim, first believing in Christ.

      Then, “IT IS ONLY AFTER JESUS DEATH & RESURRECTION.. that ALL MEN are DRAWN AS CHRIST IS LIFTED UP.
      The Father is not said to be drawing BUT JESUS:”

      So we have two different actions: (1) the action of the Father prior to the cross to draw believing Jews to Christ and (2) the action of Christ after the cross to draw believing Jews and gentiles to Him. It is an interesting theology but certainly distinguishes itself from Calvinism.

  18. Hi Roger,
    PART1

    You said:
    But let’s accept your position. When we come to v44, ““No one can come to Me, unless the Father who sent Me draws him;…” we get, ““No one can come to Me, unless he first believe in me so that the Father who sent Me can give him to me and then draw him to me.”

    I was addressing those that are given, not those drawn.

    37All that the Father giveth me (these are those that believe what the Father says about me, ie that I am.the Messiah) shall come to me (to be their Shepherd); and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.

    38For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.

    39And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me (that is those who believe in me and are following me)I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day.

    40And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day. SO THESE ARE THE GIVEN ONES
    _______________

    42And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? how is it then that he saith, I came down from heaven? [ DO NOT BELIEVE THE WITNESS]
    43¶Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves.
    44No man can come to me [BE GIVEN], except the Father which hath sent me draw [SHOW WHO JESUS IS TO] him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
    JESUS GOES ON TO EXPLAIN:
    45It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God [DRAWN]. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father,[I.E BELIEVES] cometh[GIVEN] unto me.
    IT IS WRITTEN THAT GOD TEACHES ALL, THOSE WHO GO ON TO LISTEN AND LEARN COME ( ARE GIVEN) TO CHRIST

    46Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father.
    47Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.
    48I am that bread of life

    The Father draws people to the work of Christ, and who He is,and that He is indeed the awaited messiah and no one else. He does this by confirming Jesus as His Son, through the miracles, teachings, authority that Jesus exhibits, and even when His voice came at His baptism saying… “This is my beloved son”.

    After this, The Father expects that they should believe in His testimony of His Son. If they do He gives them to Jesus to Shepherd etc. If they don’t believe He cannot/does not give them to Jesus.
    ___

    64But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him.
    65And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.

    They are not being given to Jesus synonymous with coming to Jesus, because they do not believe The Father’s witness of Jesus.

    John 10:37If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not.
    38But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him.

    IF THEY CHOOSE TO BELIEVE, THEN THEY WILL BE GIVEN… IF NOT IT IS NOT POSSIBLE

    1. CLare, I stated your position as “When we come to v44, ““No one can come to Me, unless the Father who sent Me draws him;…” we get, ““No one can come to Me, unless he first believe in me so that the Father who sent Me can give him to me and then draw him to me.”

      You responded, “I was addressing those that are given, not those drawn.

      37All that the Father giveth me (these are those that believe what the Father says about me, ie that I am.the Messiah) shall come to me (to be their Shepherd); and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out….” and “The Father draws people to the work of Christ, and who He is, and that He is indeed the awaited messiah and no one else. He does this by confirming Jesus as His Son, through the miracles, teachings, authority that Jesus exhibits, and even when His voice came at His baptism saying… “This is my beloved son”.
      After this, The Father expects that they should believe in His testimony of His Son. If they do He gives them to Jesus to Shepherd etc.”

      So, God draws people to Christ; the person believes; God then gives the person to Christ; and Christ becomes his shepherd. OK. Let’s take this position back to John 3:16 and harmonize, giving us, “God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son [to die on the cross], whereupon God draws a Jew to Christ by teaching the Jew so the Jew listens and learns and believes thereby allowing God to give him to Christ so that he should not perish, but have eternal life as Christ would not cast them out.” I can see the logic of that.

      Then, “The Father expects that they should believe in His testimony of His Son. If they do He gives them to Jesus to Shepherd etc.’

      Your conclusion that God gives believers to Christ in order that Christ should shepherd them is a key point to your argument. How did you come to that conclusion? It’s another point that distinguishes your theology from Calvinism.

      Then, “64But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him.
      65And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.
      They are not being given to Jesus synonymous with coming to Jesus,…”

      Actually, there are two types of giving here. v64 God gives the person the ability to believe in Christ. v37 God gives to Christ the person who believes (your position).

      1. Hi Roger

        You asked:
        Your conclusion that God gives believers to Christ in order that Christ should shepherd them is a key point to your argument. How did you come to that conclusion? It’s another point that distinguishes your theology from Calvinism.”

        Jesus says that all who come to Him are to follow Him. He says He is the good Shepherd. He says we are to build our lived upon His words etc. John 10 and many other scriptures.

        Jesus not only gives us eternal life. But He says He will be with us (through the Holy Spirit) which He sent to remind us of His words, (which are really the words of The Father). He does not leave us as orphans. We are to follow Him if we are His sheep and no other.

        These are few of the reasons I say, The Father gives believers to Jesus to shepherd.
        —————–
        You Said:
        Actually, there are two types of giving here. v64 God gives the person the ability to believe in Christ. v37 God gives to Christ the person who believes (your position).

        64But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him.

        Why do you say God gives ability to believe in ref to vs 64. I can’t see that in the text. Only that Jesus is telling some people that He knows that they don’t believe.

        65And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can COME UNTO ME, except it were given unto him of my Father.

        Meaning no one can follow Jesus unless the Father allows it. Well The Father has already said that only those who believe get to Come/be given to Jesus/will follow Jesus. But Jesus is explaining that they are not able to come/follow Him, because of their unbelief.

        .vs45….. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, COMETH UNTO ME.

        The above people in vs 64&65 are not learning from the Father, so cannot come unto Jesus. They are not “believing”after being drawn (ie the Father confirming the witness of who Jesus is etc)

        In summary ( I may not have the intricate details of The Father’s drawing &giving 100%) but from the plain reading of Chapter and verse, I see that their own unbelief is the problem, not that God is stopping them from believing. In fact in some other verse Jesus says:

        John10:37 If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not.
        38But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him.

        He seems to be really trying to get them to believe, but why?,.. if the Father has already willed that they believe not. Jesus then, would be going against His Father’s will, but Jesus said
        John 8:29 KJV — And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him.

      2. Clare writes, “Jesus says that all who come to Him are to follow Him. He says He is the good Shepherd. He says we are to build our lived upon His words etc. John 10 and many other scriptures.”

        OK. The argument seems reasonable – but I’m not ready to buy into it. I am still with those who equate “coming to” Christ with “believing in” Christ. However, it does define one difference between the Calvinism and the non-Calvinist. We can add this to Brian’s argument that the Calvinist and non-Calvinist must use different definitions of “omniscience.” So, if a person concludes that God has Brian’s omniscience and then holds to Clare’s definition of “coming” to Christ meaning to be shepherded by, or follow, Christ, that person can say that he is not a Calvinist. I’m fine with that, but I think it involves a false conclusion. Such a person can still be saved.

        Then, “Why do you say God gives ability to believe in ref to vs 64. I can’t see that in the text. Only that Jesus is telling some people that He knows that they don’t believe. ”

        64 “But there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who it was that would betray Him.
        65 And He was saying, “For this reason I have said to you, that no one can come to Me, unless it has been granted him from the Father.”

        We read, “Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe,” followed immediately by, ““For this reason I have said to you, that no one can come to Me,…” Because Jesus says, “For this reason…” should we not tie both thoughts together, (1) “who did not believe,” and (2) “no one can come to Me.” Exegetically, there seems to be a direct link between the two statements. To conclude that “come to” actually has Jesus meaning to follow Him seems to me to be a eisgetical leap to me. I guess we can argue this point over the next few centuries.

        Then, ‘from the plain reading of Chapter and verse, I see that their own unbelief is the problem, not that God is stopping them from believing. ”

        To which the Calvinist agrees.

        Then, “He seems to be really trying to get them to believe, but why?”

        To say, “really trying,” is to soften the force of what Jesus says. Remember the statement of the man Jesus healed in John 9, ““Since the beginning of time it has never been heard that anyone opened the eyes of a person born blind. If this man were not from God, He could do nothing.” The decision by the Jews is not to believe in Jesus (that’s the easy decision to make) but to continue in unbelief. What can explain the decision of the Jews to continue in unbelief when they are presented with the indisputable evidence of God’s works that Jesus is the Christ. We are reminded of Paul’s explanation in Romans 9, “…it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants…even us, whom He also called, not from among Jews only, but also from among Gentiles.” What does Paul say earlier about those whom God calls, “whom He predestined, these He also called; and whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.” So, is Jesus “really trying” to get people to believe or is He merely exposing the irrationality of those who do not believe?

      3. Rh writes:

        “So, is Jesus “really trying” to get people to believe or is He merely exposing the irrationality of those who do not believe?”

        I see some glaring problems with the latter premise of this question. Firstly, it would change Jesus’ desire and agenda from seeking to save the lost into merely making apparent who God has preselected irresistibly for destruction.

        Secondly, there is nothing irrational about people who are unable to believe not believing. Indeed, what would be irrational is demanding people to do what you have deliberately made them unable to do.

      4. TS00
        Secondly, there is nothing irrational about people who are unable to believe not believing. Indeed, what would be irrational is demanding people to do what you have deliberately made them unable to do.

        br.d
        Good points TS00

        Calvinists don’t have “rational” – what they have is double-speak masquerading as rational. :-]
        The vast majority of Calvinist arguments are semantic arguments – not rational arguments.

  19. Part2:
    THE DRAWING OF THE FATHER IS

    John5: .
    31¶If I bear witness of myself, my witness is not true.
    32There is another that beareth witness of me; and I know that the witness which he witnesseth of me is true.

    33Ye sent unto JOHN, and HE BARE WITNESS unto the truth.

    34But I receive not testimony from man: but these things I say, that ye might be saved.

    35He was a burning and a shining light: and ye were willing for a season to rejoice in his light.

    36But I have GREATER WITNESS than that of John: for THE WORKS WHICH THE FATHER HATH GIVEN ME TO finish, THE SAME WORKS that I do, BEAR WITNESS of me, THAT the FATHER HATH SENT ME.

    37And The FATHER HIMSELF, which hath sent me, HATH BORNE WITNESS OF ME. Ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape.

    38And ye have not his word abiding in you: for whom he hath sent, him ye believe not.

    39Search THE SCRIPTURES; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they ARE they WHICH TESTIFY OF ME.

    40And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life.

    .THE REASON WHY THEY WERE NOT GIVEN:…

    44How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only?

    45Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father: there is one that accuseth you, even Moses, in whom ye trust.

    46For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me.

    47But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words

    THE FATHER HAS BEEN DRAWING THEM, BUT THEY ARE NOT CHOOSING AT THIS POINT TO BELIEVE.

    THERE’S A SCRIPTURE THAT INDICATES THEY’LL BELIEVE LATER/AFTER THE CROSS.
    .
    A BIT LIKE JESUS’S BROTHERS

    John 8:
    24I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.
    25¶Then said they unto him, Who art thou? And Jesus saith unto them, Even the same that I said unto you from the beginning.

    28¶Then said Jesus unto them, WHEN YE HAVE LIFTED UP THE SON OF MAN, THEN SHALL YE KNOW that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.

    1. Calvinism’s 3 rules for interpreting scripture:

      1) All scripture MUST AFFIRM universal divine causal determinism
      2) Any verse that does not or cannot be used to accomplish this is superfluous
      3) Any verse that directly contradicts universal divine causal determinism MUST BE NEUTRALIZED
      Usually this is accomplished by altering the definition of a specific word within that verse – and imposing a “private” definition.

      The Calvinist mind is conditioned to read scripture through this lens
      And it is the only way his mind can read it and make sense of it.

      The end result is that the Calvinist’s mind learns to turn scripture into double-speak

      Where God communicates to man – the opposite of what he knows to be true.
      God commands man to do [A] – knowing that he has RENDERED-CERTAIN man’s fate as the opposite of what he commanded.
      The scripture communicates: True AS-IF False ………False AS-IF True

      1. br.d writes, ‘Calvinism’s 3 rules for interpreting scripture:
        1) All scripture MUST AFFIRM universal divine causal determinism
        2) Any verse that does not or cannot be used to accomplish this is superfluous
        3) Any verse that directly contradicts universal divine causal determinism MUST BE NEUTRALIZED”

        Or, as the Calvinist would put it:
        1. God is omniscient.
        2. God knows the future perfectly.
        3. All Scripture can be harmonized with this.

      2. br.d
        Calvinism’s 3 rules for interpreting scripture:
        1) All scripture MUST AFFIRM universal divine causal determinism
        2) Any verse that does not or cannot be used to accomplish this is superfluous
        3) Any verse that directly contradicts universal divine causal determinism MUST BE NEUTRALIZED”

        rhutchin
        Or, as the Calvinist would put it:
        1. God is omniscient.
        2. God knows the future perfectly.
        3. All Scripture can be harmonized with this.

        br.d
        William Lane Craig – Four Views On Divine Providence
        -quote:
        It needs to be kept in mind that universal, divine determinism is an interpretation of Scripture.
        An interpretation that some Reformed divines themselves regard as irreconcilable with other clear teachings of Scripture.

        When one’s interpretation of Scripture leads one into this sort of cul de sac, it is a good idea to re-assess whether one has, indeed, rightly interpreted Scripture.

      3. br.d writes, ‘When one’s interpretation of Scripture leads one into this sort of cul de sac, it is a good idea to re-assess whether one has, indeed, rightly interpreted Scripture.”

        In the interpretation of Scripture, one must always keep two things in mind: (1) God is omniscient; and (2) God is omnipotent – God knows all that happens and God can change anything He does not like.

      4. br.d
        When one’s interpretation of Scripture leads one into this sort of cul de sac, it is a good idea to re-assess whether one has, indeed, rightly interpreted Scripture.”

        rhutchin
        In the interpretation of Scripture, one must always keep two things in mind: (1) God is omniscient; and (2) God is omnipotent – God knows all that happens and God can change anything He does not like.

        br.d
        When one’s interpretation turns scripture into double-speak.
        A one’s interpretation has god communicating the opposite of what he knows to be true – one has a corrupt interpretation.

        I understand you’re happy with Calvin’s interpretation – no problemo – I’ll take the rational one. :-]

      5. br.d writes, “When one’s interpretation turns scripture into double-speak.
        A one’s interpretation has god communicating the opposite of what he knows to be true – one has a corrupt interpretation.”

        Yeah, those nasty non-Calvinists.

      6. br.d writes, “When one’s interpretation turns scripture into double-speak.
        A one’s interpretation has god communicating the opposite of what he knows to be true – one has a corrupt interpretation.”

        rhutchin
        Yeah, those nasty non-Calvinists.

        br.d
        AS-IF :-]

    2. Clare Ansah writes, “40And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life.

      .THE REASON WHY THEY WERE NOT GIVEN:…”

      In John 6:37, you argue that the person believes; God gives the person to Christ whereupon they come to Christ so that Christ can shepherd them. There, you argued against the Calvinist conclusion that “coming” is “believing.” Now, in John 5, you seem to be arguing that “coming” is “believing.” Did you men that they are given by God to Christ but then reject Christ as there shepherd thereby rejecting life?

      Then, ‘THE FATHER HAS BEEN DRAWING THEM, BUT THEY ARE NOT CHOOSING AT THIS POINT TO BELIEVE.”

      6:44 seems to identify a certainty – God draws and Christ raises up. How do you conclude that we can insert a decision by the person whom God draws/teaches to not believe between God’s drawing and Christ’s raising. The Calvinist conclusion is that the one drawn by God is necessarily raised by Christ.

  20. Matt 23:37 “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing.”

    Christ is showing His heart here. He wanted to gather…. He wanted something…. but it did not happen because they were not willing. No matter how you approach the verse, Christ wanted something and did not get it cuz of man’s unwillingness.

    Or put in Calvinist terms….. They were “thwarting” His will.

    Lesson: don’t thwart.

    1. FOH
      Or put in Calvinist terms….. They were “thwarting” His will.

      Lesson: don’t thwart.

      br.d
      Pretty hard to thwart a supernatural being who is determining your every neurological impulse!

      Jim Henson features the Muppets in: THE DIVINELY CHOREOGRAPHED THWARTING

      Coming to a theater near you! :-]

    2. FOH writes, “No matter how you approach the verse, Christ wanted something and did not get it cuz of man’s unwillingness.
      Or put in Calvinist terms….. They were “thwarting” His will. ”

      Such is the depravity of man reinforced by Romans 1, “the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God, or give thanks; but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools,…” As Jesus said, “No one can come to me…”

  21. Daily through the Bible brings me to Numbers 23. I encounter one of the 2 passages that many people use to “prove” that God never changes His mind.

    Numbers 23: 18 This was the message Balaam delivered:

    “Rise up, Balak, and listen!
    Hear me, son of Zippor.
    19
    God is not a man, so he does not lie.
    He is not human, so he does not change his mind.
    Has he ever spoken and failed to act?
    Has he ever promised and not carried it through?
    20
    Listen, I received a command to bless;
    God has blessed, and I cannot reverse it!
    21
    No misfortune is in his plan for Jacob;
    no trouble is in store for Israel.

    ———-

    Context tells us that this is a message from Balaam the diviner to Balak the heathen. We can hardly say it is a setting for eternal doctrine. It is God’s message to those people at that moment.

    Also in context we see it is delivered as poetry, using metaphor and allegory.

    Third we see that there is MUCH misfortune in God’s plan for Jacob and Israel (later). They will be judged harshly and soon. So he cannot be meaning this poetry as eternal doctrine. Balaam is saying that AT THAT TIME, God will not change His mind (and AT THAT TIME has no misfortune planned for Israel). It seems to be Balaam’s way of saying God will not change His mind on this matter.

    Since God’s word shows us many times, in many books, and in many ways of speaking that He does change His mind…. it seems hermeneutically incorrect to insist that this one poetic passage should trump all those.

    God changes His mind in context with Noah, Abraham, Moses, Nineveh, Jeremiah… and plenty of others.

    For me, the argument that God never changes His mind based on this verse (and one in 1 Samuel) holds no weight against the many times He says so Himself.

    1. FOH writes, “Since God’s word shows us many times, in many books, and in many ways of speaking that He does change His mind…. it seems hermeneutically incorrect to insist that this one poetic passage should trump all those.”

      To which the Calvinist agrees. The exception occurs when a people repent of their evil and turn back to God. Note what Paul writes in Romans 9-11, “Isaiah also cries concerning Israel, “Though the number of the children of Israel be as the sand of the sea, a remnant shall be saved”:…In the same way then, there has also come to be at the present time a remnant according to God’s gracious choice.” So, God does change his mind – but that is not to say that this was not according to God’s eternal plan.

    2. FOH
      On the scripture showing the God does change his mind – I think we’ll find this is one of those places where the Calvinist reverts to his *AS-IF* thinking.

      Calvin’s god does not ever change his mind *AS-IF* he does.
      *AS-IF* thinking is the way the Calvinist has his cake and eat it at the same time.
      He can say DOES NOT CHANGE HIS MIND in one context and DOES CHANGE HIS MIND in another context.

      What the Calvinist has going on here is Calvin’s god FAKE CHOREOGRAPHED PRESENTATION of himself interacting with man.
      Like its all a theater or puppet show and Calvin’s god is pulling the strings

      ACT 1: Calvin’s god communicates *AS-IF* his will is for Adam to not to eat the fruit

      ACT 2: Adam who is RENDERED-CERTAIN to eat the fruit – and therefore is NOT PERMITTED to do otherwise.

      ACT 3: Calvin’s god communicates *AS-IF* Adam was NOT RENDERED-CERTAIN – and WAS PERMITTED to do otherwise.

      ACT 4: Calvin’s god judges Adam

      In Calvinism the bible narrative is nothing more than a choreographed theater show – where Calvin’s god continuously bears false witness.

      Choreographed – is what the Calvinist means when he says “its all according to the divine plan”

      What that really means is its all according to a choreographed script – where Calvin’s god is simply reading his lines.

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