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Dr. Leighton Flowers was named the Director of Evangelism and Apologetics for Texas Baptists in 2018. In addition to preaching on a wide range of biblical subjects, Leighton regularly travels to churches of all sizes to conduct seminars that specialize on evangelism and apologetics. He has participated in debates with leading apologists and led training conferences for the Annual Convention, Conclave, Apologetic Conferences, and the SBC Annual Convention.

Previously, he served as the Director of Youth Evangelism for Texas Baptists for 13 years. In this position he oversaw the statewide youth leadership training camp called Super Summer and the Youth Evangelism Conferences impacting thousands of teenagers with evangelistic messages, missions mobilization and discipleship training. Leighton has also assisted in the oversight of such ministries as See You At The Pole, a worldwide prayer movement (began by his father, Chuck Flowers) which is impacting people not only in Texas but all around our world.

Leighton earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Applied Theology from Hardin-Simmons University (1997); a Masters of Divinity with Biblical Languages from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (2000); and completed his Doctorate at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary (2016).

Leighton and his wife Laura, a Licensed Therapist in Richardson, have four children (Colson, Cooper, Esther and Caden) and live in North Garland just outside of Dallas where he also serves as an Adjunct Professor of Theology for Trinity Seminary. Prior to coming on staff with Texas Baptists, Leighton served as a pastor in the local church for over 10 years. He and his family are active members of First Baptist Richardson.

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354 thoughts on “About

  1. br.d , Am I correct in saying that According to Calvinism, Before the Foundation of the World, God Chooses some to be Predestined & Elect to Heaven, and Others to Endless Hell, not because of anything good or bad in the Person, or anything they did, but because God has his reasons known only to him ? What could those reasons be then ? Then how can a Calvinist Christian like Matt Slick of Carm.org or James White , and countless other Calvinist Christians be absolutely certain they are “Elect” and Predestined to Heaven, and Not Hell, and the Lake of Fire , do they ever worry about when they die and they see God they are told
    “Sorry, your name is Not in the Book of Life” and they say in response
    “But I was a born again Christian” I apologize if my Questions are a bit redundant, but it’s so difficult to properly interpret scripture, do you think Calvinism is based on a poor interpretation of the Bible, of verses taken out of Context, which viewed in their Historical and Biblical Contexts do Not Support Calvinism,
    What is your opinion of the famous preacher Jonathan Edwards and his infamous sermon
    “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” Do you believe Calvinism distorts the True Nature of God ?

    1. Jeffw
      Am I correct in saying that According to Calvinism, Before the Foundation of the World, God Chooses some to be Predestined & Elect to Heaven, and Others to Endless Hell

      br.d
      Correct!
      John Calvin
      -quote
      They are not found but *MADE* worthy of destruction

      Jeffw
      And not because of anything good or bad in the Person, or anything they did, but because God has his reasons known only to him ?

      br.d
      Correct!
      You will find this confirmed in the West Minster Confession – where it states explicitly that the infallible decree is NOT predicated on – or based upon – nor does it take into consideration – anything having to do with the CONDITION of the creature.

      Jeffw
      What could those reasons be then ?

      br.d
      John Calvin’s answer:
      -quote
      “For his good pleasure”

      Jeffw
      Then how can a Calvinist Christian like Matt Slick of Carm.org or James White , and countless other Calvinist Christians be absolutely certain they are “Elect” and Predestined to Heaven, and Not Hell

      br.d
      According to the doctrine – they can’t
      As a matter of fact – the only thing the doctrine permits them to have CERTAINTY of – is Calvin’s god will do what he pleases – according to his good pleasure.

      You will also find that “evil” is a RELATIVE concept in Calvinism
      An “evil” that is done by a creature – is declared “evil”
      An “evil” that is done by Calvin’s god – is declared “good”

      So in Calvinism “evil” is RELATIVE to who is committing it.

      Calvin’s god has absolute CERTAINTY of everything.
      In Calvinism the creature has what is called “a posteriori” knowledge (i.e. knowledge after the fact)
      And election is an exclusive SECRET only Calvin’s god knows.
      So the Calvinist only has CERTAINTY of his election after the fact (i.e. when he ends up in the lake of fire – or not)

      Jeffw
      Do they ever worry about when they die and they see God they are told
      “Sorry, your name is Not in the Book of Life” and they say in response

      br.d
      The Calvinist psychology has changed over the years.
      Calvinist leaders like John Piper and John MacArthur try very hard to obfuscate any NEGATIVE implications associated with the doctrine.

      You will notice Calvinism is called “Doctrines of Grace”
      That is simply a strategy the Calvinist uses to obfuscate aspects of the doctrine which would be troubling to the Calvinist.

      However, in previous generations – Calvinists would consider such obfuscations – a sign of intellectual dishonesty.
      They wanted to retain the doctrine with a much pristine manner.
      They wanted to be TRUE to the doctrine.
      So consequently – there was a pronounced degree of DREAD observable within Calvinist writings concerning their UNCERTAINTY of their eternal destiny.

      The historical name for this was “The dreaded false hope”

      Jeffw
      Do you think Calvinism is based on a poor interpretation of the Bible, of verses taken out of Context, which viewed in their Historical and Biblical Contexts do Not Support Calvinism,

      br.d
      Calvinism is a theology first and foremost
      And an inherent characteristic of a theology is that it is a theory looking for affirmation from scripture.
      And when the human mind falls into that process – it will naturally ignore data within scripture which conflicts with the theory.
      And verses that have little to nothing to do with any aspect of the theory – will be interpreted to ensure they do.
      And any verses which contradict the theory will be argued away.

      One way you can tell when this is happening is to read verses that are quoted by Calvinists when they are arguing for aspect of the theory.

      If you quietly wait and watch – you will find the Calvinist removing words from the text and replacing them with his own words.
      Those replacement words are designed to affirm his doctrine.
      Calvinists often do this quite unwittingly.
      At some point however someone will point it out to them – and since replacing words in the text serves as a tell-tale sign – they will be careful to stop doing it. But only because they got caught! :-]

      JeffW
      What is your opinion of the famous preacher Jonathan Edwards and his infamous sermon
      “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” Do you believe Calvinism distorts the True Nature of God ?

      br.d
      There is an interesting historical review of the reformed positions on various things by – a reformed scholar – Dr. Oliver Crisp
      He asserts that Jon Edwards caused a dramatic shift in reformed thinking – moving it into the domain of secular philosophy.
      Because Edwards – as a Calvinist – was highly influenced by secular philosophy.
      The current adaptation of “COMPATIBILISM” within Calvinism is a result of Edwards.

      Personally since Edwards is totally ensnared with Calvinistic thinking – I don’t find him of any value except to use a few of his quotes concerning Calvinism to illustrate Calvinist thinking.

      Remember – Calvinism is a social structure.
      And within its social structure – there is a totem-pole system of respected persons.
      Edwards is one of their respected persons.
      But in Calvinism – a respected person – is respected because they have the ability to persuade people
      They are not respected because they have the truth
      They are respected because they are deemed useful to draw people into the system.

      Once you learn to understand – Calvinism is a doctrine of “good-evil”
      And once you learn to recognize Calvinism is saturated with DOUBLE-SPEAK
      Then those things become a red-flag that something is wrong with it.

      In vain is the net spread in the sight of any bird.
      We teach you how to recognize Calvinism’s net – so that you don’t get captured by it! :-]

  2. br.d , but a tactic used by Calvinists to defend their Calvinism is when they say to the Non-Calvinist or Ex-Calvinist
    “You don’t truly understand Calvinism, or you never truly understood Calvinism Properly” could it be that we are setting up a False Dichotomy , it’s not either/or, perhaps a Mixture of Calvinism & Arminianism is True, a Hybrid system is the Truth, so in a sense “Both” are somewhat true , the problem as people have pointed out, we humans are Finite, while God is Infinite, and in this brief Earthly life, we humans can never fully understand and comprehend an Infinite God

    1. JeffW
      but a tactic used by Calvinists to defend their Calvinism is when they say to the Non-Calvinist or Ex-Calvinist
      “You don’t truly understand Calvinism,

      br.d
      Very true!
      However the Calvinist is human – and its critical to understand certain observable characteristics of his psychology.

      The Calvinist has an urgency to remain true to the doctrine.
      But the doctrine is Exhaustive Divine Determinism.
      And Exhaustive Divine determinism – rules out IN-determinism
      So he claims to reject IN-determinism
      And he claims that other Christians who accept IN-determinism have a false theology

      But then comes to rub
      The fire that keeps you warm – can also be the fire that burns you.

      There are aspects of Determinism which the Calvinist finds unpalatable.
      And the only other option from those unpalatable aspect – is what the IN-determinist Christian has.

      So the Calvinist uses language that allows him to tap-dance back and forth into both worlds.
      The world of Determinism – and the world of IN-determinism.

      As a consequence – his language becomes the language of DOUBLE-SPEAK.

      I have a dozen books written by Non-Calvinist authors – over many years – which all refer to the phenomenon of DOUBLE-SPEAK as a characteristic of Calvinist language.

      So when your language is a DOUBLE-SPEAK language – then the only people who are going to understand you are people who understand why your language is a DOUBLE-SPEAK language.

      So for those Non-Calvinists who don’t understand that aspect of Calvinist psychology – they are going to be confused by Calvinist statements.

      But once you learn to understand what the Calvinist is trying to escape from – from within his own doctrine – then you understand why he speaks a DOUBLE-SPEAK language.

      And once you learn the underlying propositions of Exhaustive Divine Determinism – then you understand the theology.

      So understanding Calvinism requires both understanding the logical implications of the doctrine – and the Calvinist need to escape those logical implications.

  3. br.d For Example the website, banneroftruth.org has an article headlined
    “Five Misunderstandings About Calvinism”
    AUTHOR
    Macleod, Daniel
    CATEGORY
    Articles
    DATE
    May 14, 2019 What is your reply ? to the Five Misunderstandings

    1. 1)
      This misunderstanding seeks to differentiate Calvinism from Arminianism – as far as I’m concerned is all focused on superficial issues.

      Remember how I likened Calvinism to a house.
      The foundation and the framework of the house is Universal Divine Causal Determinism.
      Sometimes called Exhaustive Divine Determinism.

      The foundation and the framework support all of the other members of the house.
      Calvinism’s TULIP which was developed many years after Calvin’s institutes – represents the external siding, windows, lighting, etc.
      These components are all cosmetic exterior components which must be supported by the foundation and the framework.

      So when Calvinists sight differences between Arminianism and Calvinism – the foundation and framework is never their focus.
      The underlying difference between Calvinism and Non-Calvinism (including Arminianism) is Exhaustive Divine Determinism is the foundation and framework of Calvinism – and it is not the foundation and framework of the other theologies.

      So fussing over cosmetic differences of two belief systems – is like comparing two different women because they have different shades of lipstick.

      So to call that a “misunderstanding” is a waste of time since it totally misses the main point of contention.

      2) The five points are the whole of Calvinism
      This one gets a little closer to pointing to what sets Calvinism apart from its alternatives – because it HINTS about the foundation and framework of the house of Calvinism (i.e. Exhaustive Divine Determinism)
      However – as far as it goes – is to just HINT about that main difference.

      3)
      This one has to do with the way Calvin’s god is depicted by Calvin and the Calvinist interpretation of scripture.
      With Calvinism – we have a divine potter of Roman’s 9 who creates/designs humans specifically as “vessels of wrath fitted for destruction”
      We have statements from Calvin such as “They are not found but MADE worthy of destruction.

      There is really no way to evade non-Calvinists looking at this picture and seeing a depiction of raw power for the sake of pleasure.
      That is why in this article they say “it is doubtful whether the charge can be sustained.”

      They actually know – all a Non-Calvinist has to do is connect some dots with their depiction of Calvin’s god – and this is the picture one gets.
      So the only way the Calvinist can get around this – is to point to NEBULOUS representations of divine benevolence.
      The reason those representations of divine benevolence are NEBULOUS is because they represent the exception and not the rule – when it comes to Calvinism’s depictions of divine intent.

      4)
      Later Calvinism is harsher than earlier
      This is an in-house issue between Calvinists

      From my observation – current Calvinism has a powerful urgency to NOT appear as a harsh belief system.
      It seeks to present itself as a system of divine benevolence – vs divine malevolence.
      John Piper is noted for representing a SOFT and benevolent version of Calvinism.
      John MacArthur names his ministry “Grace to you” rather than “Eternal torment in the lake of fire to you”

      But you and I both know – in Calvinism – the preponderance of humans are created specifically for the lake of fire.
      So these ministries are focused on painting a picture of divine benevolence – and OBFUSCATING divine malevolence.

      John Calvin would and did scoff at many representations of his doctrine by current Calvinists.
      If you read points of contention with Christians who disagreed with him in his day – you will see their points of disagreement are actually representations of many current Calvinists today.

      In other words – if Calvin were here today – he would be outraged and have some very harsh names for a large percentage of current Calvinist representations.

      From what I understand – Calvin was immediately followed by Theodore Beza – who was even more harsher than Calvin in temperment.

      Most of Calvinism today from my observation – represents a WHITE-WASHED version of Calvin’s Calvinism.
      As a matter of fact – the first sermon I ever heard from John Piper – he was complaining about people who claimed he white washed Calvinism. When he said that – I said to myself – there is probably some truth to it. And that was a 20 years ago – and I think that observation is correct. – he does present a white-washed version of Calvinism.

      Additionally – you have certain confessions which follow many years after Calvin’s death.
      Why do certain groups need to create their own special confession of what Calvinism is – when they have the institutes?
      Because they don’t like the harshness they find in Calvin’s representations.
      When they read the institutes in church – people get the picture of divine malevolence
      They leave that church and they don’t come back
      So the church has to create a SOFTER version of Calvinism.

      Consequently there are large numbers of Calvinists today – who claim to hold to confessions and distance themselves from Calvin.

      When I quote John Calvin to them – they will say
      “I am a Calvinist and we don’t believe that”

      That becomes a clear indicator – Calvinists today want a SOFT benevolent version of Calvinism

      5)
      Double predestination is predominantly another in-house disagreement
      This is another place where current Calvinists want to separate themselves from John Calvin’s Calvinism and create as SOFT version of Calvinism

      John Calvin
      -quote
      Some are pre-ordained to eternal life, others to eternal damnation, and accordingly as each has been created
      for one of these ends, we [Calvinists] say he has been predestined to life or death.

      The only way a Calvinist today gets around that – is to DOUBLE-SPEAK his way around it.

      The same thing holds for the AUTHOR OF EVIL which is the picture clearly observed with Calvinism.

      Dr. William Lane Craig explains:
      -quote
      In the Reformed view – God MOVES people to choose evil, and they cannot do otherwise.
      God DETERMINES their choices – which MAKE them do wrong.

      If it is evil to make another person do wrong, then on this view God is not only the cause of sin and evil, but becomes evil Himself, which is absurd.

      By the same token, all human responsibility for sin has been removed.
      For our choices are not really UP TO US:

      God CAUSES us to make them.
      Nothing we do is UP TO US

      How the Calvinist thinks he can evade these logical consequences is a mystery to me..
      -end quote

      The way the Calvinist thinks he can evade these logical consequences is by using DOUBLE-SPEAK to talk his way around them.

  4. Why do you spend so much effort teaching what is wrong with other peoples theology instead of directly teaching Gods word without referring to those things? Then let your teaching without referring to what is wrong with other peoples theology speak for itself. I find more videos of you talking about what is wrong with other people than what is right with God. Most all the video’s are negative. I’m not saying your right or wrong in your theology just wondering why you don’t speak more on the Holiness of God vs the what’s wrong with Man theology, in other words, speaking of the Holiness of God without saying what wrong with others theology. Hope that makes sense.

    1. Hello Raf Bar and welcome
      Dr. Flowers – due to his schedule – is not here to directly interact with posters.
      You may more readily find him on face book – if you are a FB user.

      I think if I may venture to answer your question – its because of the destruction he sees that theology causes to people.
      If you could help people – and you had information useful to help them – would you?

      There is a large body of believers who thank Dr. Flowers on a consistent basis for helping them.
      I hope that helps you to understand.
      blessings!
      br.d

      1. I think what Dr. Flowers is doing IS also destructive because in most of his you YouTube video’s when I search his name is mostly putting Christian against Christian. According to Jesus putting brother against brother is a sin and seeing Dr. Flowers is a teacher … well he knows the Bible well enough. While God does allow for correction in the church, the way Dr. Flowers is going about it is not what Jesus teaches to do. When a non Christian see’s this “Battel Royal” Dr. Flowers is putting out there how do you think they see Christians. He might be helping some but he also may be hardening others. Jesus did call out the Scribes and Pharisees but this was different. They mostly believed in their works and outward appearances vs what Jesus taught about the inward man, the heart. Also Jesus came as Messiah and fulfilled the prophecies about Him and they still didn’t believe. And it’s recorded for us that Paul corrected Perter. However this is an example of what we should do. What does it say in Galations 2:11, Paul told Peter FACE TO FACE. Then according to Jesus teaching, in verse 14 we see Paul did it in front of the church and Peter was there. He didn’t correct Peter and the church while Peter was not there. Also in this case the gospel was at stake.

        My son is a new Christian and has been watching a lot of Dr. Flowers videos and he gets almost angry when he see’s something I believe goes against what Dr. Flowers points out is wrong (a negative teaching). Then I start to explain my point of view and scripture then things get heated. When I realize what Satan is doing (putting brother against brother) me being a Christian longer I back down and end the discussion.

        While I think debate is good, I don’t think 95% or so of your content debating when a debater from the other side is not there is not productive for the Kingdom of God. I’m not a Calvinist / non Calvinist, Baptist, Catholic, Lutheran, Presbyterian or whatever denomination, I’m a disciple of Christ and go to and am a member of a Christ following, God fearing church (which I wont mention the denomination because really it’s irrelevant in the Kingdom of God). In heaven there are not sections of Christians in Heaven, we are all brothers in Christ. I watched several of Dr. Flowers videos because my son was watching them so at least I could understand what my son was talking about. I had to quit watching them because of the negativity in them putting brother against brother. Also there were several videos where Dr. Flowers was trying to make a point and took the context of the single verse out of context, also leaving critical parts of a single verse out all together. I’m trying to get it across to my son to, one know the context of the passage, two know the audience the passage was given to, three know the literary style of the passage and four most importantly pray asking God for guidance. At least knowing this you can get a better understanding of God’s Word and then have a better understanding how to apply that to our lives to be more like Jesus.

        I watch teachings from a variety of teachers. The videos I look for are one that teaches Gods word without putting brother against brother. I also pay close attention to the three points I mentioned earlier that I asked my son to look for always praying for God’s guidance. This helps me see false teaching from good teaching. I’m not saying Dr. Flowers is a false teacher I think a lot of what he teaches is true it’s just the way he does it that I think is more destructive most than helpful others.

      2. Raf:
        I think what Dr. Flowers is doing IS also destructive because in most of his you YouTube video’s when I search his name is mostly putting Christian against Christian.

        br.d
        Dr. Flowers is mild compared to the name calling, angry, aggressive, scorched earth, accusations which are common fair for Calvinists against any Christian who disagrees with them.

        For example – you won’t find Dr. Flowers accusing Calvinists of being heretics and god haters.
        And I’m never surprised when Calvinists start attacking me like that.

        If you think Dr. Flowers is setting Christian against Christian – from my perspective – you ain’t seen nu-thin! :-]

        Raf:
        My son is a new Christian and has been watching a lot of Dr. Flowers videos and he gets almost angry when he see’s something I believe goes against what Dr. Flowers points out is wrong (a negative teaching).

        br.d
        Can you provide an example?

      3. Just because Dr. Flowers doesn’t do things to the degree another person, does that make it right. No, Jesus taught if you have hate towards someone you’ve committed murder in your heart. So if I hate someone its almost as bad to God as if I do kill someone. Now this may be a bad example but is just to say to the degree of sin someone does something in God’s eyes is still not right. I don’t see Jesus doing what Dr. Flowers is doing. What I see Jesus doing is going to the person that there teaching is incorrect and correcting them out of love. What I see Dr. Flowers doing is almost Anti Jesus like. We are to separate ourselves from the world and not act like the world acts. We are children of God, servants of the King and Jesus representative. That’s not to say God won’t use Dr. Flowers method to bring someone to knowledge. Even God used Joseph’s brothers for good even though they meant it for evil. This is not to say Dr. Flowers is evil but just an example.

        I won’t provide an example because that’s between God, my son and me per Jesus instructions. I mentioned it to show how the way the Dr. Flowers presents his material can hurt more than help. I think if Dr. Flowers would have presented his teaching without saying what was wrong with another persons theology then things would have gone differently with the discussions my son and I have. I just get this sense of hostility when I listen to his videos. I get Dr. Flowers passion because he had one world view now he has another. But that doesn’t need to come out in most his videos to Christians and Non Christians that can be seen around the world. One video was all he needed to explain why he changed, then moving forward teach his new view occasionally mentioning “this is what I used to believe and this is what I now believe” leaving titles out of it. Remember there are no denominations in Heaven and the only titles God uses are to identify basically only two groups of man (Yes Both Jew and Gentile also fall in either group). Saved and unsaved, with imagery of the same concept (Wheat/Tares, Sheep/Goats). Now there are different degrees of each group but just two. Just for age reference I’m in my mid 50’s and my son is in his mid 20s.

        The other thing I don’t understand in your reply is why Calvinism is brought up. I never mentioned Calvinism other than I don’t identify with any denomination. I don’t understand all of Calvinism although I’m aware of the world view/theology. I use world view because for some reason the world wants to make all these categories to have this “identity” The only “identity” I want is “Sinner, saved by grace through faith, by God’s mercy, washed by the blood of the lamb, clothed in Jesus righteousness, child of God, servant of the King, co-heirs in Christ” I suppose I could go on but I think you get the idea. I wouldn’t want to be identified by the labels of this world but rather by the labels God has given us. Our charge is to seek first the Kingdom of God and hunger and thirst after righteousness, to be Holy as He is Holy. Do I do it perfectly, no, none of us do. But with God’s spirit in the Christian we undergo God’s sanctifying work till one day we are with Him in Glory.

        μαρὰν ἀθά (Maranatha)!!!

        It’s not about us… It’s about “May God be glorified”.
        Sola Gratia
        Sola Fide
        Sola Scriptura
        Solus Christus!
        Soli Deo Gloria!

      4. Raf
        Just because Dr. Flowers doesn’t do things to the degree another person, does that make it right.

        br.d
        TRUE!
        But does the Lord teach us to point to a small example – while ignoring the blatant ones?

        Raf
        Jesus taught if you have hate towards someone you’ve committed murder in your heart.

        br.d
        Well – now you are ascribing hatred – which is totally unsustainable
        And to continue to forward it – is going to end up being more detrimental to yourself than anyone else.

        Raf
        I don’t see Jesus doing what Dr. Flowers is doing.

        br.d
        Well – as I said earlier – there is a large body of believers who do consider the information Dr. Flowers brings to the table – as liberating.
        And they will not hesitate to tell you – their perspective is the opposite of yours.

        But obviously their experience is the different from yours.

        Raf
        What I see Jesus doing is going to the person that there teaching is incorrect and correcting them out of love.

        br.d
        And turning over tables – and setting sacrificial animals free – and publicly denouncing the priests for turning the temple into a den of thieves.

        Raf
        What I see Dr. Flowers doing is almost Anti Jesus like.

        br.d
        Considering those who greatly appreciate his ministry – and who feel the information he provides has set them free – we would have to compare your feelings with theirs – and conclude you see through your own eyes – and they see through theirs.

        Raf
        I won’t provide an example because that’s between God, my son and me per Jesus instructions.

        br.d
        Strange reasoning!
        But you must do what you feel is correct.

        Raf
        The other thing I don’t understand in your reply is why Calvinism is brought up.

        br.d
        Calvinism in fact is the central focus.

        Dr. Flowers created SOT101 (this blog here) and dedicated it as a platform designed to inform Christians who would otherwise be lured into Calvinism by its strategically misleading language.

        Due to the success of SOT101, Dr. Flowers was asked to produce more content on Youtube.
        So Calvinism is the central focus of both SOT101 and his Youtube videos.

        I appreciated the rest of your post.
        Thank you

        Blessings to you also
        br.d

      5. br.d
        Well – now you are ascribing hatred – which is totally unsustainable

        Raf
        As I said it may have been a bad example but was just showing the degree of something does not make it right.

        br.d
        Well – as I said earlier – there is a large body of believers who do consider the information Dr. Flowers brings to the table – as liberating.

        Raf
        As I said God can use anything for good. However, if people are finding liberation from not having one world view and embracing another …. well I get my liberation from God, through Jesus by His Spirit. My peace comes from the Lord, not men.

        br.d
        And turning over tables – and setting sacrificial animals free – and publicly denouncing the priests for turning the temple into a den of thieves.

        Raf
        Not a good example, why did Jesus do what He did? There is a difference between incorrect teaching that does not send one to hell and what they were doing to the House of God. Next you’ll say God is not love because He poured His wrath out on Jesus due to our sin.

        br.d
        we would have to compare your feelings with theirs – and conclude you see through your own eyes – and they see through theirs.

        Raf
        Ummm, ok, Are you saying faith is feelings and seeing through our own eyes? You have me confused. Do a study of Matthew 5 and the Beatitudes. You don’t find peace in feeling good.

        br.d
        Strange reasoning!

        Raf,
        Jesus tells us to take our differences with our brother to our brother. How is that strange? You don’t have to answer but the differences that Dr. Flowers had with other teachers, how many times did he go to them and talk with them?

        As a footnote, I didn’t hear about Dr. Flowers till about a month ago when my son brought up one of his videos. I agree with some stuff he said and disagreed with other stuff because as I looked at context, the audience the referenced scripture was about and other scripture it didn’t match up to what the Bible says in it’s context. Until I saw him wearing a Provisionism or Provisionist shirt I never heard of that either. Based on my research this world view is new although based on some other world views from what I’m reading.

        I normally look for study videos / audio that as a disciple I can learn from, direct teachings to learn more on what it means to be like Jesus and what it means to be a Christian. With Dr. Flowers videos they were argumentative, and the more I watched it seemed he was almost hostile towards Christians that have a different world view than his. My question is why the hostility? Are all Calvinist Christians going to hell for what they believe? Are Non Calvinist Christians going to hell for what they believe? I think I just watched too many of his videos in a short period of time. What I should have done was pick one video compared the oppositional one that is being argued about then pray and ask God “How does one view vs the other view make me more like Christ?” Compare both to scripture, find Which one is more Biblical than the other. Who know maybe neither one does, or maybe they both are saying the same thing but just wording it different. I’ve seen that with other things, two people saying the same thing but arguing over what turns out to be nothing because they are saying the same thing. Satan works that way, if he can cause division he will. He doesn’t go after the unsaved, but Christians. The other reason we can’t go off of feelings.

        Face it with all the competing world views on Christianity out there there is going to be fault with them all some way or the other. Two competing ideas, typically one is right and one is wrong. What is true is they both think they are right.

        One example where I was confused would be the one https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dPhlAOpPqjA&list=WL&index=31 where he’s talking about being humble. Not one of his referenced scriptures proved what he is arguing about. When you read the below we probably agree that the church has unsaved people in it but the primary role of the, for lack of a better term, “corporate church” is to “Feed Jesus Sheep (Christians)”. Do people get saved in churches of course but again it’s not the primary role.

        He mentions 1 Peter and James for example, who was the audience of these letters? Were they letters to an unsaved congregation? Or was it to churches that would have already believed in Jesus, and these were letters for instruction. So, in these letters would they be telling people in the church (believers) to be humble. For 2 Chronicles Didn’t they humble themselves only after the chastisement of the Lord. It took Shemaiah the prophet to go to Rehoboam to tell him why king of Egypt came, because they had transgressed against the Lord. It was after what the Lord did that, they humbled themselves. In 2 Kings he left out part of the verse, he left out “when you heard what I spoke against this place and against its inhabitants, that they would become a desolation and a curse,” again sounds like they humbled themselves after chastisement, or threat of it. If you read before this verse, you get the whole context of the section, like verse 11 “Now it happened, when the king heard the words of the Book of the Law, that he tore his clothes.” In Matthew 18 who is Jesus talking to, he’s talking to his disciples who were following Him. He was addressing the question they asked Him “Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” The Chapter is addressing that a follower of Jesus (a believer) becomes childlike in that he depends on God like a child depends on a parent knowing we can’t take care of ourselves, humble not prideful. Same with Luke 18, humble not prideful, we are dependent on someone else. So really in most of these examples he used God did something first already to bring about a humble spirit. Just trying to understand this argument.

        God bless.

      6. Raf
        As I said God can use anything for good. However, if people are finding liberation from not having one world view and embracing another …. well I get my liberation from God, through Jesus by His Spirit. My peace comes from the Lord, not men.

        br.d
        I think you will agree – believers who are thankful for the information Dr.Flowers provides – see their liberation from God also.

        Raf
        There is a difference between incorrect teaching that does not send one to hell and what they were doing to the House of God.

        br.d
        That would be your perspective because you don’t see the particular damage done to God’s people
        One area of concern is leading young Christians into the sin of using dishonest language,
        I don’t think Jesus approves of that any more than de did the priests abusing the physical temple.

        Raf
        Ummm, ok, Are you saying faith is feelings and seeing through our own eyes? You have me confused. Do a study of Matthew 5 and the Beatitudes. You don’t find peace in feeling good.

        br.d
        To clarify – you were mentioning your own perspective about Dr. Flowers
        Those believers who appreciate his ministry obviously have the opposite perspective

        Raf,
        Jesus tells us to take our differences with our brother to our brother. How is that strange?

        br.d
        Oh I see what you mean!
        And what do we do when that doesn’t work – which is the case with Calvinism?
        And the damage that it causes simply persists from year to year.
        We have Calvinist pastors who lie to church boards in order to get themselves into churches that are non-Calvinist churches
        They eventually cause division – and an eventual church split
        And they refuse to acknowledge deceiving people is a sin.
        These are not temporary situations
        There is an unflinching tenacity to it that simply refuses to budge – even when Pastors beg them to be honest – they simply ignore it.

        To understand depth of it – you would actually want to talk directly with Dr. Flowers
        And by that conversation be able to understand why he believes the Lord is leading his efforts as his best option.

        Raf
        With Dr. Flowers videos they were argumentative, and the more I watched it seemed he was almost hostile towards Christians that have a different world view than his. My question is why the hostility?

        br.d
        I can’t help but believe he would say its more than just about having different beliefs.
        You were probably not aware – but the central focal point is informing Christians with information they can use to not get lured into deceptive teachings.

        Raf
        Are all Calvinist Christians going to hell for what they believe?

        br.d
        You might be surprised to know John Calvin taught that the majority of the church is divinely created as souls specifically designed to be vessels of wrath fitted for destruction – and divinely deceived by God – into a false sense of salvation during their life-time.

        br.d
        On the particular argument you mentioned – I’m not familiar with it – so I wouldn’t be a good source to answer your question.

        Rah
        God bless.

        br.d
        Appreciated!
        It was nice talking with you
        And thanks!
        God bless you also!

    2. br.d
      I can’t help but believe he would say its more than just about having different beliefs.
      You were probably not aware – but the central focal point is informing Christians with information they can use to not get lured into deceptive teachings.

      Raf
      I get everything your saying. Arming Christians with truth is very important and protecting them from deception. I agree 100% What I disagree with is the method. There is a way to arm with truth than to, for a lack of a different way to put it, set up a cage match between two Christians, where Dr. Flowers is in this corner and “Insert name here of who his argument is against or Calvinist” is in this corner, ding ding. This is the way of the world. I mean if your going to teach the truth, teach the truth. There is a way to do it without this “cage match” mentality (many people have done it) to get upvotes on YouTube or whatever, which as a Christian wouldn’t want any part of. If you say its not a cage match look at the the picture for this video when you do a search for “Dr. Leighton Flowers” in DuckDuckGo This for me was the first video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M-TCokZKX8U. It shows Dr. Leighton Flowers with Boxing gloves on with a picture of John Calvin with boxing gloves on. But I get that too, that’s the way of the world.

      I say again, Face it with all the competing world views on Christianity out there there is going to be fault with them all some way or the other. Two competing ideas, typically one is right and one is wrong. What is true is they both think they are right. And yes Dr. Flowers has been wrong even in his new world view or his new Provisionism. Just like I know I’ve been wrong especially when I just look at one verse and take it out of context or out of the audience it was originally given to. I thank God that he showed me when I was wrong and ask that He continue to guide me in truth. God has guided my in understanding scripture and to look for at least these things, 1) context, 2) original audience (Like Jews, Gentiles, Galileans, time period), 3) literary style. there might be more but this has been a good foundation. I even got introduce to this big word, Hermeneutics. Will I get some stuff wrong in the future, I’m sure I will, I’m on this side of Heaven. Thankfully, in a way, I’m not called to be a teacher because I know if I spread untruth God’s judgement against me will be more. And hopefully in our discussion I have been true to God’s word and hope that if I have been true to His word, God willing, be used for His Glory.

      For me to go back and say what I see and unbiblical I’d have to find all the videos I watched and go back through them. That I am not going to do, I don’t think I could take any more. I will watch Dr. Flowers teachings that don’t involve this “cage match” mentality. because there is a lot of truth that Dr. Flowers does teach.

      I hope you understand it not so much the content as it is the method. The method seems more world like then God like. And that method can be destructive, not in all cases, but it can be. I also realize Dr. Flowers is not the only one to use this method. It just so happens my son has been watching a lot of his videos and when my son presents Dr. Flowers thoughts its also in the argumentative posture that Dr. Flowers uses vs sitting down and talking about scripture and looking at both world views to make a comparison. Then based on scripture which one is more biblical. Right now It’s hard for me to even talk with him about any of it with out him getting in the argumentative posture. So I’ll pray, give it some time then try again.

      1. I’m sorry to hear about the difficulty with your son.
        As a father of a grown son, I know how much that would seriously bother me!
        It would hurt me to the core!

        I think you have a kind and considerate heart.
        And I suspect your son probably gets that from you as well.

        Perhaps this is a temporary situation???
        Perhaps a phase your son is going through – where perhaps he sees you in some kind of adversarial role for some reason?
        So I can understand where you are coming from and your concern.

        I’m not so sure that Dr. Flowers is the key influence of that – because I don’t see others responding the same way to his videos.

        It sounds like there is something in Dr. Flower’s videos that your son is connecting with at this point.

        I wonder if your son has had dialogs with Calvinists and he finds Dr. Flowers videos have added to his ability to understand Calvinism and coherently respond to it.

        But I’m only guessing.

        Since I can see that you obviously care about your relationship with him – I’m hoping he will see your heart on the matter – and he’ll appreciate it.

        I’ll ask the Lord for that on your and your son’s behalf!!

        Thanks for sharing your heart with me!
        Very sincerely
        br.d

      2. I lied, I ended up watching another video my son posted. I have a questions. A lot of the videos seem to have this common theme, what happens first regeneration or my belief, is that one of the main disagreements between Calvinist and Provisionism? And the theme that seems to go along with this is God choosing us sovernly based on His will (Calvinism) or us choosing God based on our free will (Provisionism)? Is this correct so far? I don’t understand fully Calvanism or Provisionism. If this is all correct so far this is what I have pictured in my head.

        I’m standing before God, does God say “Come my son I chose you out of the world” Or does He say “Come my son, thank you for choosing me instead of Satan” Maybe my logic is flawed in this but based on what I’m hearing this almost seems the case.

        In my mind I’m trying to see which world view gives the most Glory to God alone. But to do that I’m trying to understand the two. When you search the webernet you get all kinds of answers. I figure Dr. Flowers having been a Calvinist and now Provisionism would have good insight to this.

        If I’m incorrect can you please explain at least this topic from both perspectives. Please don’t do it in an argumentive way. What I’m looking for is this is the Calvinist view and this is the Provisionism view. I’m not looking for what is wrong with one or the other, I just want facts. Maybe some links that explain both views that Dr. Flowers might recommend, again not an argumentive on but two separate videos one explaining the Calvinist view and one explaining the Provisionism view and neither one of them mentioning one or the other.

      3. a major problem seems to be men defining and dictating what brings more glory to God, and by implication boxing god into their definition. Given that Jesus was the most truly human ever do we think that when, for example, Matthew arose from his desk to follow Jesus, he expressed pleasure and delight at M’s response, or was he more like, “I made you do that”?

      4. Raf A lot of the videos seem to have this common theme, what happens first regeneration or my belief, is that one of the main disagreements between Calvinist and Provisionism?

        br.d
        No – that issue is more of an external manifestation of the underlying main disagreement.

        That which sets Calvinism apart from all other Christian Theologies is Universal Divine Causal Determinism.
        Sometimes called “Exhaustive Divine Determinism”

        I like using the analogy of a house
        In the house of Calvinism – the foundation and the frame-work are Universal Divine Causal Determinism.

        The other components of the house of Calvinism are things like siding, windows, doors, lighting etc.
        Those things are more COSMETIC in nature and they require being supported by the foundation and the frame-work.

        So for example – the TULIP in Calvinism – is a COSMETIC component.
        Many people debate over the TULIP as if it were the CORE of the doctrine – when the REAL core of the doctrine is hidden because it the CORE of the doctrine is its foundation and frame-work.

        The CORE proposition in Calvinism – is that whatsoever comes to pass is infallibly decreed at the foundation of the world before humans are created.

        This means everything that happens must be FIXED in the past – and meticulously determined by god.
        Nothing is MERELY PERMITTED to happen.
        Everything that comes to pass must be meticulously CAUSED by god.

        So accordingly – in Calvinism – a person is not regenerated because they CHOOSE to believe in Christ
        They are regenerated because it was CHOSEN for them – and it comes to pass infallibly.
        And they have NO CHOICE in the matter.

        Raf
        And the theme that seems to go along with this is God choosing us sovernly based on His will (Calvinism) or us choosing God based on our free will (Provisionism)? Is this correct so far?

        br.d
        Kind of yes!

        Freedom granted to the creature is a huge issue for Calvinism – because it is radically different from all of Calvinisms alternatives.
        In Calvinism – the creature is ONLY free to be/do what is divinely determined
        You are NOT FREE to be/do otherwise

        So for example:
        Adam was free to eat the fruit – because eating the fruit was determined to infallibly come to pass
        But Adam was NOT free to NOT eat the fruit – because doing so would falsify the infallible decree -which is NOT permitted.

        John Calvin puts it this way:
        -quote
        Hence they [humans] are merely INSTRUMENTS INTO WHICH god constantly INFUSES what energy he sees meet, and TURNS and converts to any purpose at his pleasure. (Institutes)

        Calvinist Paul Helm’s says:
        -quote
        Not only is every atom and molecule, every thought and desire, kept in being by god, but every twist and turn of each
        of these is under the DIRECT CONTROL of God (The Providence of God pg 22)

        Calvinist Robert R. McLaughlin
        -quote
        “God merely PROGRAMMED into the divine decrees all our thoughts, motives, decisions and actions”
        (The Doctrine of Divine Decree)

        Raf
        I don’t understand fully Calvanism or Provisionism. If this is all correct so far this is what I have pictured in my head.

        br.d
        The CORE difference is that Calvinism is based on Universal Divine Causal Determinism – and all of its alternatives (including provisionism) do not accept that philosophy into their theology.

        Raf
        I’m standing before God, does God say “Come my son I chose you out of the world” Or does He say “Come my son, thank you for choosing me instead of Satan” Maybe my logic is flawed in this but based on what I’m hearing this almost seems the case.

        br.d
        In Calvinism – every impulse that comes to pass within the human brain is AUTHORED by god.
        So man has not choice in the matter of anything.
        So if a man appears to choose god in Calvinism – it is really the case that he actually had no choice.
        The impulse comes to pass within his brain infallibly.
        And an infallible impulse is impossible to resist.

        Raf
        In my mind I’m trying to see which world view gives the most Glory to God alone. But to do that I’m trying to understand the two. When you search the webernet you get all kinds of answers. I figure Dr. Flowers having been a Calvinist and now Provisionism would have good insight to this.

        br.d
        You will find Dr. Flowers quoting from A.W. Tozer on this topic

        quote
        God sovereignly decreed that man should be free to exercise moral choice, and man from the beginning has fulfilled that decree by making his choice between good and evil. A God less than sovereign could not bestow moral freedom upon His creatures, He would be afraid to do so.

        Calvinism however holds to the opposite
        That sovereignty is defined as authoring every impulse that is permitted to come to pass in your brain.

        Raf
        If I’m incorrect can you please explain at least this topic from both perspectives. Please don’t do it in an argumentive way. What I’m looking for is this is the Calvinist view and this is the Provisionism view. I’m not looking for what is wrong with one or the other, I just want facts. Maybe some links that explain both views that Dr. Flowers might recommend, again not an argumentive on but two separate videos one explaining the Calvinist view and one explaining the Provisionism view and neither one of them mentioning one or the other.

        br.d
        I think perhaps I did that in my explanations above.
        Let me know if I missed something you were expecting.

      5. BR.D
        Are you a Provisionalist? In your reply, I didn’t see much of what you believe other than what you don’t believe.

        I never heard of “Universal Divine Causal Determinism” looking at the definition, Yea I don’t think God chooses what shirt I wear or what ice-cream I choose. In regards to “Free Will” I think Martin Luther explains it best, maybe not perfect but I think is most biblical. Quote from his letter on “the Bondage of the will”

        “But, if we do not like to leave out this term altogether, (which would be most safe, and also most religious) we may, nevertheless, with a good conscience teach, that it be used so far as to allow man a “Free-will,” not in respect of those which are above him, but in respect only of those things which are below him: that is, he may be allowed to know, that he has, as to his goods and possessions the right of using, acting, and omitting, according to his “Free-will;” although, at the same time, that same “Free-will” is overruled by the Free- will of God alone, just as he pleases: but that, God-ward, or in things which pertain unto salvation or damnation, he has no “Free-will,” but is a captive, slave, and servant, either to the will of God, or to the will of Satan. ”

        What I think is most important to understand is we either are a servant of Satan or a servant of God. There is no in-between. We can’t be a servant to ourselves. Were our will becomes bound is by the master we serve. When I say I’m a servant of God I say I forfeit my will to serve God in the things that relate to God, he is master. Now does that restrict my free will to choose chocolate ice cream over vanilla, no. I don’t know of one time in the Bible were Jesus said “I do my will” it is always I do the will of my Father. Did that mean choice to drink water or wine of the time period? I don’t think so. I think it was as it pertains to heavenly things and what was required to show who He was and what was required for our salvation. There might be other things that were the Father’s will but those are examples. So if Jesus did the will of the Father, am I greater than Jesus that as it relates to the things under God I have free will? Absolutely not.

        So now the question is do I choose God or does God choose me. Based on scripture God chooses us. If God does not choose someone does that put blame on God? Absolutely not. Everyone’s destination is hell already. If God chooses to “pardon” someone out of His mercy does that make God unjust? Absolutely not.

        The imagry God uses for this is a husband and a bride. Now don’t use our understanding of this, you have to use the audience this was given to, The people of Galilee. Do a study of weddings during this time period and area. You’ll see what I mean. I don’t want you to take my word for it that’s why I won’t explain it.

        As for Calvanism and Provisionalism, God reminded me that I don’t need to understand either world view because there are faults with both. They are man’s way they interpret scripture. Maybe it would be good to know the faults so I know what not to do or believe.

        I am a child of God, a servant of the King. Regardless of what the sequence of events that happened. What my focus is how to be a child of God, servant of the King. And to pray for what God’s will is for me? How can I be more like Jesus? How can He use me to bring others to Him?

        It’s not about me… But may God be glorified!!!

      6. Raf
        BR.D
        Are you a Provisionalist? In your reply, I didn’t see much of what you believe other than what you don’t believe.

        br.d
        I don’t go by that label – even though I understand and agree with the principle behind it.
        Basically – from what I understand – the “Provisionist” position is that the Lord will make a way for people to walk in himself.
        And that is called making a “Provision” for people.

        Raf
        I never heard of “Universal Divine Causal Determinism” looking at the definition, Yea I don’t think God chooses what shirt I wear or what ice-cream I choose. In regards to “Free Will” I think Martin Luther explains it best, maybe not perfect but I think is most biblical. Quote from his letter on “the Bondage of the will”

        br.d
        With Calvinism – 100% of whatsoever comes to pass – is solely and exclusively determined at the foundation of the world.
        And for Calvin – divine foreknowledge of what [X] will be – is lacking until divine determination of what [X] will be is made.

        Calvin says it this way:
        -quote
        He foresees *ONLY* as a consequence of his decree

        So if he does not decree that you wear a blue shirt – then you don’t wear a blue shirt.
        If he does not decree the impulse in your mind – to put on a blue shirt – then you don’t have that impulse.

        He foreknows that you will wear a blue shirt – simply because he knows he decreed that is what you would do.

        Calvinism rejects what is classically known as Libertarian Freedom for the creature.
        Libertarian freedom entails the ability to choose between [A] and [NOT A]

        But that form of choice entails at minimum 2 options [A] and [NOT A] from which the creature can select.
        In Calvinism – only one single option can be RENDERED-CERTAIN
        Therefore – man is never granted more than one single option for every event.
        And man has NO CHOICE in what that option will be.
        So essentially – the function of “CHOICE” (as we generally understand it) is not granted to humans in Calvinism.

        Raf
        “But, if we do not like to leave out this term altogether, (which would be most safe, and also most religious) we may, nevertheless, with a good conscience teach, that it be used so far as to allow man a “Free-will,” not in respect of those which are above him, but in respect only of those things which are below him: that is, he may be allowed to know, that he has, as to his goods and possessions the right of using, acting, and omitting, according to his “Free-will;” although, at the same time, that same “Free-will” is overruled by the Free- will of God alone, just as he pleases: but that, God-ward, or in things which pertain unto salvation or damnation, he has no “Free-will,” but is a captive, slave, and servant, either to the will of God, or to the will of Satan. ”

        br.d
        I appears that Luther – from this paragraph – is indicating that there are certain (higher) things in which man is not granted choice.
        But there are certain (lower) things in which man is granted choice.

        Raf
        What I think is most important to understand is we either are a servant of Satan or a servant of God.

        br.d
        In Calvinism – both Satan and man (whether saved or not) are instruments of god.
        And they think and do whatever he decrees them to thinking and do.

        Calvin explains:
        -quote
        men can deliberately do nothing unless he *INSPIRE* it. (Concerning the Eternal Predestination of God pg 171–172)

        -quote
        “The devil, and the whole train of the ungodly, are, in all directions, held in by the hand of God as with a bridle, so that they can neither conceive any mischief, nor plan what they have conceived, nor how they may have planned, move a single finger to perpetrate, unless in so far as He…..COMMANDS; that they are not only bound by His fetters but are even *FORCED* to do Him service.” (Institutes I, 17, 11.)

        Raf
        There is no in-between. We can’t be a servant to ourselves. Were our will becomes bound is by the master we serve.

        br.d
        Yes – I would see that as a consistent Non-Calvinist position.

        In Calvinism all creatures – both human and demonic – are meticulously controlled by infallible decrees.

        Raf
        When I say I’m a servant of God I say I forfeit my will to serve God in the things that relate to God, he is master. Now does that restrict my free will to choose chocolate ice cream over vanilla, no. I don’t know of one time in the Bible were Jesus said “I do my will” it is always I do the will of my Father. Did that mean choice to drink water or wine of the time period? I don’t think so. I think it was as it pertains to heavenly things and what was required to show who He was and what was required for our salvation. There might be other things that were the Father’s will but those are examples. So if Jesus did the will of the Father, am I greater than Jesus that as it relates to the things under God I have free will? Absolutely not.

        br.d
        Some of this depends on what we mean by “free will”
        The belief that a person has the ability to choose between whether something is TRUE or FALSE – is traditionally classified as a Libertarian choice.

        Calvinism rejects Libertarian freedom.
        So in Calvinism – the reason the human mind perceives [X] as TRUE – is because god decrees the human mind to perceive that
        Even though god himself knows [X] is FALSE.

        He chooses what perceptions the human mind will have.
        So in Calvinism – the human mind is not in control of its perceptions.

        Raf
        So now the question is do I choose God or does God choose me. Based on scripture God chooses us. If God does not choose someone does that put blame on God? Absolutely not. Everyone’s destination is hell already. If God chooses to “pardon” someone out of His mercy does that make God unjust? Absolutely not.

        br.d
        So all non-Calvinists typically will say – God first chooses us – and then MERELY permits us to make a choice one way or another towards himself. He grants humans the function of choice.

        In Calvinism – god is the sole and exclusive choice maker.
        So if he chooses you to reject him – then your mind is not permitted to do anything but reject him.
        If he chooses you to accept him -then your mind is not permitted to do anything but accept him.

        Raf
        The imagry God uses for this is a husband and a bride. Now don’t use our understanding of this, you have to use the audience this was given to, The people of Galilee. Do a study of weddings during this time period and area. You’ll see what I mean. I don’t want you to take my word for it that’s why I won’t explain it.

        br.d
        Yes!
        The Non-Calvinist Christian will typically look at the man who proposes marriage to the woman – and leaves her free to make her own choice. He does not make the choice for her.

        In Calvinism – god does not grant choice to humans – so the bride is made to want the husband by infallible decree.

        Raf
        As for Calvanism and Provisionalism, God reminded me that I don’t need to understand either world view because there are faults with both. They are man’s way they interpret scripture. Maybe it would be good to know the faults so I know what not to do or believe.

        br.d
        Totally agree!!!
        We are all fallible and our reading of scripture is subject to human biases.

        Raf
        I am a child of God, a servant of the King. Regardless of what the sequence of events that happened. What my focus is how to be a child of God, servant of the King. And to pray for what God’s will is for me? How can I be more like Jesus? How can He use me to bring others to Him?

        br.d
        And in my mind – it is wonderful that he makes that available to us!!

        Raf
        It’s not about me… But may God be glorified!!!

        br.d
        Yes completely!
        If it were not for his loving kindness – I would be living in nothing by my own filth.

      7. br.d
        So if he does not decree that you wear a blue shirt – then you don’t wear a blue shirt.
        If he does not decree the impulse in your mind – to put on a blue shirt – then you don’t have that impulse.

        Raf
        In a way this is true. I want to wear a blue shirt, and that’s my will. But God does not want me to wear a blue shirt, who’s will will happen? Can my will overturn God’s will? Absolutely not. May it never be. Now in reality does God restrict what I choose to wear, probably not. Does God know I’ll wear a blue shirt? Sure, but God still grants me that choice which is what you said.
        —————————————–
        br.d
        both Satan and man (whether saved or not) are instruments of god.
        Raf
        This is true. In that God can use Satan or man or a Bible or a rock to accomplish His will. But because this is true I agree does not make your next sentence true unless He does will it to be so, our will never, never, never over power God’s will. This is not to say God will make someone sin, He won’t and can’t do that, but will He allow it, yes.
        br.d
        And they think and do whatever he decrees them to thinking and do.
        ———————————————-
        br.d
        Yes!
        The Non-Calvinist Christian will typically look at the man who proposes marriage to the woman – and leaves her free to make her own choice. He does not make the choice for her.

        Raf
        This is why I asked you to research weddings of the time period and location. The bride in most cases did NOT choose her husband, they were arranged. Typically it was the fathers of the man and woman that made the choice. Sometimes the man and woman didn’t even know each other. So it’s the Father that chooses the bride for the husband. If you do your research on weddings of this time period and location you will also see it’s imagery of Jesus return. It’s a wonderful illustration God gave us.

      8. Raf
        In a way this is true. I want to wear a blue shirt, and that’s my will. But God does not want me to wear a blue shirt, who’s will will happen?

        br.d
        The Calvinist system has two divine wills.
        One will is DETERMINATIVE
        In other words – it determines whatsoever comes to pass.

        This will is called the SECRET will.
        Because this will is to NOT REVEALED to mankind.

        This is the will which will determine whether you want to wear a blue shirt or not.
        You don’t get to make that choice yourself
        It is made for you.

        The other will – in Calvinism is often called the ENUNCIATED will
        This is the will that is expressed by what god communicates.
        Thou shalt not kill – for example.

        But the SECRET will can be the exact opposite of the ENUNCIATED will
        And when the SECRET will is the opposite of the ENUNCIATED will – then the ENUNCIATED will – functions as a FALSE REPRESENTATION of the SECRET will.

        For example – in Calvinism – the SECRET will was for Cain to murder his brother Able.
        And the SECRET will did not permit Cain to do anything else but murder Able
        The SECRET will – determined the impulses that would come to pass within Cain’s mind – to murder Able
        And no other impulses were permitted.

        But the ENUNCIATED will – was for Cain to do well
        So the ENUNCIATED will – in this case was the opposite of the SECRET will
        And so the ENUNCIATED will functioned as a FALSE REPRESENTATION of the SECRET will.

        Raf
        Can my will overturn God’s will? Absolutely not. May it never be. Now in reality does God restrict what I choose to wear, probably not. Does God know I’ll wear a blue shirt? Sure, but God still grants me that choice which is what you said.

        br.d
        Yes – that would be generally understood in most Christianity.
        However no by John Calvin.

        During John Calvin’s days publishing his writings there were other Christian thinkers whom he engaged with letters.
        They argued the position you currently hold.

        They disagreed with his doctrine about the divine will.
        They argued that god gives people choice to sin or not to sin – and that if they choose to sin – then god PERMITS them to sin.

        But Calvin saw this as an insult to divine control and sovereignty.
        For Calvin – god CAUSES man to sin by decreeing him to sin and the decree does not permit man any alternative.

        His response was to scoff at those who disagreed with him
        -quote
        If such a barren invention is accepted that Adam sinned because he had free choice, where will the omnipotence of God be, whereby he regulates all things according to his secret plan, which depends solely upon itself?

        Raf
        This is why I asked you to research weddings of the time period and location. The bride in most cases did NOT choose her husband, they were arranged. Typically it was the fathers of the man and woman that made the choice. Sometimes the man and woman didn’t even know each other. So it’s the Father that chooses the bride for the husband. If you do your research on weddings of this time period and location you will also see it’s imagery of Jesus return. It’s a wonderful illustration God gave us.

        br.d
        I understand that.
        But what I was pointing to – is the woman has a choice – doesn’t she?
        Is she given no choice of whom she will be married to?

      9. br.d
        The Calvinist system

        Raf,
        At this point in my life I’m not studying Calvinism. At some point I might to understand it because it apparently they even wear their underware backwards.

        br.d
        I understand that.
        But what I was pointing to – is the woman has a choice – doesn’t she?
        Is she given no choice of whom she will be married to?

        Raf
        No, she did not have a choice. You have to understand their customs. However she would give her approval to proceed with the marriage. No She did not have a choice of who she would marry, The Fathers arranged this. Now I suppose there were times when maybe the father passed away not sure what they did then. And I suppose this may have not been true 100% of the time but a very high percentage of the time.

        Also they were young according to our standards, Mary was about 12 they think when she was betrothed to Joseph who was 80 -90 years old I guess according to some writings but he could have been younger. Sounds like she didn’t know him either at first, this is not in the Bible but from other writings I guess. Mary they think was 15 when she had Jesus. This is irrelevant but some interesting “facts”.

        That’s why I say, to understanding scripture look for at least these things, 1) context, 2) original audience (Like Jews, Gentiles, Galileans, time period), 3) literary style. The Bible wasn’t written directly to us in that we are not the original people it was given to although it can be applied to us. There are things written that the people of the time knew what Jesus taught because he taught by using things they would understand from their daily life. 2000 years removed it’s hard for us to fully understand unless you have some historical context and still it’s hard for us to “fully” understand.

        I like hearing from teachers that do give the historical context, it brings it more to life when you can picture yourself with them as well a more depth in the meaning. It’s like understanding the original language. Our English does a poor job at giving the full meaning/picture that Hebrew or Greek. or Aramaic gives. I suppose that why we have so many denominations, people trying to put modern day meaning to a 1000, 1500, 2000 old meaning depending on the year, for us 2000, 3000 years + depending on when the old testament was written. But regardless God still gives insight to His word by His Spirit, so it’s knowable.

      10. Thank you Raf,
        I saw a documentary on this a few months ago.
        I’m going to find that and watch it again.

        Thanks! :-]

  5. br.d, So William Lane Craig is Not a Calvinist, would you say that Overall William Lane Craig is a Superb
    Christian Apologist , Some Pastors say that Jesus is Returning Soon, and while it’s true that
    “No One Knows the day or the hour” as Jesus himself says, however in Other parts of the New Testament we Christians are Told to Watch for the Signs that the Second Coming is Near, even though we cannot Know Exactly when Jesus will Return, Only God the Father Knows for Certain , I personally Hope Jesus Returns Soon, to End all Evil, Suffering & Injustice in America & The World Once and For All, Forever, it deeply upsets me all the Evil, Suffering & Injustice in America & The World, Myself and Countless Other Christians Hope Jesus Returns Soon to Make the World a Perfect Utopian Paradise, as I mentioned in my Blog about my Mother that you read..
    See Also the book, Heaven: by Randy Alcorn

    1. Hi Jeff
      I picked up on Dr. Craig a number of years ago
      I think he is a brilliant thinker.
      Sam Harris – the Atheist also says Dr. Craig is the only Christian who can put the fear of God into an Atheist!

      Dr. Craig – of course does not do that by being aggressive – he is actually a very mild mannered man.
      He does it because his reputation for logical thinking is world-renowned.

      You might be interested in checking out his video teaching series at this web-site “Reasonable Faith”
      There are a number of interesting topics he teaches on – which you might find interesting.

      And yes – as you do – I also wish for the Lord to come quickly. :-]

  6. br.d. What do you think of the Bible verse
    Deuteronomy 29:29
    The New International Version

    29 The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law” The Verse and it’s Context , how does this Relate to Our Calvinism debate , how can we Prove if
    Calvinism is True or Not, or at least partially true, can it be scientifically tested, perhaps by the Laws of Physics, at the Quantum Level ,

    1. This part of the verse: “the things revealed belong to us” does not logically follow with Calvinism’s underlying core proposition.

      Remember – Calvinism is predicated on Exhaustive Divine Determinism.
      Determinism rejects the function of Libertarian choice for all creatures.
      Libertarian choice logically entails having at least 2 options available from which to select.

      2 options can be seen in a number of forms.
      They can be YES and NO
      They can be RIGHT and LEFT
      They can be FORWARD and BACKWARDS
      They can be UP and DOWN
      They can be TRUE and FALSE

      With Libertarian choice – the creature is permitted to choose from both of those options.
      But what is critically important is – both of those options must be available to the creature for the creature to be able select.

      That form of choice is logically excluded in Exhaustive Determinism (aka Calvinism)
      Because in Calvinism 100% of whatsoever comes to pass is solely and exclusively determined by a THEOS alone.
      Calvin’s god determines 100% of everything
      Leaving ZERO% any anything UN-determined
      Leaving ZERO% left over for the creature to determine.

      So if everything has already been determined *FOR* you – then there is nothing left over that is being made available for you to determine.

      You need to put your thinking cap on to understand how radical the implications are with that!

      You need to understand the principle of mutual exclusion.

      For example:
      Most American voters understand that a YES vote for Joe Biden mutually excludes a YES vote for Donald Trump.
      Because both options are not available to you.
      You only have one option to select from.

      This is the principle of mutual exclusion.
      The selection of one option mutually excludes the selection of the other option.

      Another example can be driving your car forward.
      You can put your car in gear and make it move forward
      But as soon as you do that – your car moving backwards is mutually excluded
      Or conversely – you can make your car move backwards
      But as soon as you do that – your car moving forwards is mutually excluded

      Now the same limitation applies to the infallible decrees in Calvinism.

      Calvin’s god can infallibly decree that your car move forward
      In Calvinist language – this would be said as “god RENDER-CERTAIN your car move forward.”

      But it is critical to understand – just as soon as he RENDERS-CERTAIN your car move forward – he has also automatically RENDERED-CERTAIN the exclusion of your car moving backwards.

      I hope you can understand that because its very important to understand.
      Its called the principle of mutual exclusion.

      Now how does that apply to our topic here?
      If Calvin’s god RENDERS-CERTAIN you will walk forward
      Then he has also RENDERED-CERTAIN that you walking backwards is excluded
      And what is excluded is NOT available to you.

      So just as soon as he RENDERS-CERTAIN you will walk forward – then walking forward is the only option he has made available to you.
      If you were to walk backwards -you would be falsifying an infallible decree – which is impossible.

      This again is because of the principle of mutual exclusion.

      Therefore in Calvinism – for everything that Calvin’s god RENDERS-CERTAIN there is every only one single RENDERED-CERTAIN option made available to the creature.

      Therefore in Calvinism – you do not have both forwards and backwards to choose from
      Because only one of these can be RENDERED-CERTAIN as your selection
      And you don’t get to choose what your selection will be

      You do not have both Left and Right to choose from
      Because only one of these can be RENDERED-CERTAIN as your selection.
      And you don’t get to choose what your selection will be

      You do not have both TRUE and FALSE to choose from
      Because only one of these can be RENDERED-CERTAIN as your selection
      And you don’t get to choose what your selection will be

      So you should be starting to see – that in Calvinism every Determination is made *FOR* you at the foundation of the world

      If it was RENDERED-CERTAIN that you select TRUE
      Then it is also automatically RENDERED-CERTAIN that you choosing FALSE is mutually excluded.
      Which means you choosing FALSE is not available to you.

      Therefore there is really no such thing as “things being revealed to you” in Calvinism
      Because that would entail the YOU (the creature) being permitted to determine something to be TRUE or FALSE for yourself.

      And the doctrine strictly states that 100% of everything is determined *FOR* the creature.

      Now you are starting to see how really radical the underlying core doctrine of Calvinism really is!!!!!
      It is so very radical – that the Calvinist – in order to live with it – must actually deny his own doctrine.

      So what is critical for you to understand about Calvinism – is that the doctrine is so radical – the Calvinist must deny it in order to live with it.

      In order to capture this – go back and read this a few times so that you can understand how radical Calvinism really is.

  7. Br.d, What do you think of the article on the website reformedreform.wordpress.com
    on December 5, 2015 headlined
    “Leighton Flowers and the Diminishing Arguments of the Anti-Calvinist Camp” Some have also said that Anti-Calvinist views Diminish God’s Glory, I’m so confused

    1. Hello Jeffw
      I hope this finds you well!

      Firstly – I take note of the approach presented by the author of this article.
      This approach is classically called PUFFERY – which comes from a PUFFER fish – who PUFFS itself up in order to make itself appear bigger than it actually is.

      Don’t be taken in by that strategy!
      People who follow such strategies are considered sophomoric – and are never taken as mature contributors on these discussions.

      So having observed that right off the bat – I had an expectation that what would follow would lack logical substance. :-]

      So here is the first quote from Dr. Flowers

      Dr. Flowers
      “As I have said before, we are either rightly standing in defense of God’s glory or God has sovereignly determined for us to be wrong for the praise of His glory”.

      So let’s unpackage the logic that Dr. Flowers is following with this statement:

      1) According to the doctrine “Whatsoever” comes to pass is the consequence of an infallible decree

      2) The term “Whatsoever” is considered a “UNIVERSAL” term – which means – “Without Exception”

      3) Consequently – everything without exception that comes to pass – is the consequence of an infallible decree

      4) By virtue of the fact that the decree is infallible – it follows – that which the decree establishes to come to pass – will come to pass infallibly.

      5) Nature is not granted the power to alter or affect or resist anything that is infallible

      6) Therefore man is not granted the power to alter or affect or resist anything that is infallible

      7) Since EVERYTHING WITHOUT EXCEPTION comes to pass infallibly – it follows this also includes every impulse that comes to pass within the human brain.

      8) Thus according to the doctrine – every impulse which comes to pass within the human brain – whether conscious or unconscious – will come to pass infallibly – and the human is powerless to alter, affect, or resist it.

      9) According to the doctrine – everything that is decreed – is expressly for the manifestation of divine glory.

      So Dr. Flower’s conclusion is LOGICALLY SOUND

      If it is decreed that a human be wrong – then that event will come to pass infallibly – and that event was for the express manifestation of divine glory.

      The author’s response:
      Leighton has used this line before, but he reduces down the issue so that he can easily defeat it. God’s decree does not negate man’s will or responsibility—I know he knows this, so I hate to see him continue to act like Calvinists don’t hold a compatibilist worldview. You’ll see what I mean as we go on.

      Here the author wants to MAGICALLY assume – that just because he waves a MAGIC WAND called “compatiblism” it MAGICALLY makes everything APPEAR just the way the Calvinist wants it to APPEAR

      Sorry to say that does not work.

      Stanford Encyclopedia – Compatiblism:
      -quote
      “Compatibilism is the thesis that free will is compatible with determinism”

      All that Compatibilism does – is to establish that “Freedom” must be COMPATIBLE with what is determined.

      So the only thing this buys for the Calvinist – is the fact that the impulse that is infallibly decreed to come to pass within the human brain is granted sufficient “Freedom” to come to pass within the human brain. Because that “Freedom” is COMPATIBLE with what is determined.

      But the human brain is NOT FREE to have any other impulse – than what is determined – because that impulse would NOT be COMPATIBLE with what is determined.

      Read this through a few times if you don’t get it right away.

      You will eventually understand it – and then you will recognize that the Calvinist author in that article is trying to use Compatibilism as a magic wand.

      You can figure this stuff out easily – if you apply yourself to it!

      Blessings!
      Br.d :-]

  8. br.d , I may have mentioned this before, I type so many great Biblical posts I sometimes lose track of all the Topics I post about . So I apologize if I’m being repetitive, a Pastor once told me and some other Christians in a Sermon about God’s
    “Perfect Will vs his Permissive Will” do you think Calvinism is more in line with God’s Perfect Will than Permissive Will, and would you say Christians who left the Calvinist belief system are overall Much Happier after leaving Calvinism , just like Many
    Jehovah’s Witnesses after leaving the Jehovah’s Witnesses and becoming True Christians are Much Happier than were they were
    Jehovah’s Witnesses, they are very Happy they left the WatchTower Organization , I was Never a Jehovah’s Witness or a Mormon, but I’m personally Evangelical Protestant Myself

    1. Thank you Jeffw
      A very nice post!
      Well said!

      Just so that you know – in Calvinism – appeals to Divine Permissive Will – are totally misleading.
      When the Calvinist uses “Permissive” language – he is hiding an aspect of his doctrine he doesn’t want you to see.

      The best way to not be mislead by Calvinism’s “Permission” language is to understand the following formula:

      1) What is Divinely CAUSED is PERMITTED
      2) What is not Divinely CAUSED is NOT PERMITTED

      This makes perfect sense – when you understand the logical consequences of Exhaustive Divine Determinism

      1) If Calvin’s god does not PERMIT that which he infallibly decrees come to pass – he becomes a house divided against himself
      Therefore that which is Divinely CAUSED is PERMITTED

      2) The infallible decree cannot PERMIT any alternative – at pain of the infallible decree being falsified.
      Therefore what is not Divinely CAUSED is NOT PERMITTED.

      As a result – Calvinist language has evolved – and Calvinists use words like “Permit” and “Permission” as replacement words for the word “CAUSE” and “CAUSED”.

      The reason for this strategy should be obvious.
      The Calvinist is trying to make the belief system as appealing as possible.

      The Calvinist understands that if he clearly and plainly states – Calvin’s god CAUSES every sin and evil – Calvinism will be rejected by many Bible believing people – as it will be interpreted as Divine malevolence.

      So Calvinists use “Permission” language to obfuscate what they anticipate people will reject.

      Its a very pragmatic use of language
      But if you don’t understand the language – you are guaranteed to be mislead by it.

      Thanks Jeffw – your post was a blessing!

      br.d :-]

  9. br.d , My pleasure, some claim
    Calvinism leads to Fatalism,
    Some good articles I found are
    1. oakvalleyogden.org
    On May 8, 2019 has an article headlined
    “Calvinism: Fatalistic or Freeing?”
    2. thirdmill.org has an article by
    Joseph R. Nally Jr headlined
    “Is Calvinism Fatalistic?” this article says among other things that
    Arminianism is more Fatalistic
    While Christianity.com has an article headlined
    ” What Does it Mean That God Works in Mysterious Ways?” and it says
    In our minds, the way God weaves remarkable events in and through our lives may seem illogical and beyond our understanding. However, we walk by faith, not by sight. Christians know that God’s thoughts are above our thoughts and God’s ways are higher than ours.

    Annette Griffin

    What Does it Mean That God Works in Mysterious Ways?
    Who doesn’t love a good mystery? Whether it be a cold case television documentary, a clever theatrical caper, or a cozy whodunnit story, most of us enjoy the process of collecting clues about the unknown and piecing the bits together to discover the whole truth. But when we find ourselves in the middle of a personal mystery, the story is different. We typically like to be in control of our bits. When life begins to unravel in ways we can’t explain, the old adage “God works in mysterious ways” can become more baffling than beguiling.

    What Is the Meaning of ‘God Works in Mysterious Ways’?
    Certain truths are concrete, finite, and tangible. Mysteries are not. The very essence of a mystery makes it hard to grasp. You can’t put a mystery in a box or accurately predict its nature. Why? Because mysteries contain elements that are not yet clearly perceived.

    God’s ways are inscrutable, not because He’s trying to hide something from us, but because our limited human understanding lacks the capacity to grasp the full scope of His sovereignty.

    “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:8-9).

    “God’s ways are not only higher than ours, but they are also better than ours. The big struggle we have is whether or not we will embrace them. There is a blessing and a hope that comes from embracing God’s ways. The good news is that the blessing comes even when you don’t understand what God is doing,” says Clarence L. Haynes Jr. God Works in Mysterious Ways” – Biblical Truth or Myth?
    Another online article uses the Bible verse
    Proverbs 16: 33 to show that God governs even the roll of the dice
    I think Calvinists, Arminianists,
    Provisionists at times have different definitions of Biblical and Theological terms such as Sovereignty, Predestination, etc, which further complicates matters , that the 3 groups define certain things differently,

  10. br.d, My pleasure, I found some additional good online articles, tell me what you think
    1. oakvalleyogden.org on May 8, 2019 has an article headlined
    “Calvinism: Fatalistic or Freeing?”
    2. thirdmill.org has an article by Joseph R. Nally Jr headlined “Is Calvinism Fatalistic?” this article among other things claims that
    Arminianism is the true Fatalistic Theology ,
    Christianity.com has an article headlined
    “What Does it Mean That God Works in Mysterious Ways?” which says:

    In our minds, the way God weaves remarkable events in and through our lives may seem illogical and beyond our understanding. However, we walk by faith, not by sight. Christians know that God’s thoughts are above our thoughts and God’s ways are higher than ours.

    Annette Griffin
    Contributing Writer
    2021 20 May

    Sherlock mystery with hat, pipe, and magnifying glass

    Who doesn’t love a good mystery? Whether it be a cold case television documentary, a clever theatrical caper, or a cozy whodunnit story, most of us enjoy the process of collecting clues about the unknown and piecing the bits together to discover the whole truth. But when we find ourselves in the middle of a personal mystery, the story is different. We typically like to be in control of our bits. When life begins to unravel in ways we can’t explain, the old adage “God works in mysterious ways” can become more baffling than beguiling.
    What Is the Meaning of ‘God Works in Mysterious Ways’?

    Certain truths are concrete, finite, and tangible. Mysteries are not. The very essence of a mystery makes it hard to grasp. You can’t put a mystery in a box or accurately predict its nature. Why? Because mysteries contain elements that are not yet clearly perceived.

    God’s ways are inscrutable, not because He’s trying to hide something from us, but because our limited human understanding lacks the capacity to grasp the full scope of His sovereignty.

    “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:8-9).

    “God’s ways are not only higher than ours, but they are also better than ours. The big struggle we have is whether or not we will embrace them. There is a blessing and a hope that comes from embracing God’s ways. The good news is that the blessing comes even when you don’t understand what God is doing,” says Clarence L. Haynes Jr. God Works in Mysterious Ways” – Biblical Truth or Myth?”
    Plus another online article uses the Bible verse Proverbs 16:33 to show that God governs even the Role of the Dice,
    I think part of the problem in this debate between Calvinism, Arminianism, Provisionism, etc is that these groups
    define certain Biblical & Theological Terms differently, different definitions of terms such as Sovereignty, Election, Predestination, etc
    I still can’t help but wonder, which comes first, does God choose us first, or do we choose God first.?
    Does God Ordain Sin ? Both Good & Evil, For Example, if someone is tragically Robbed & Killed, in a big city like New York City, or Chicago, etc, did God ordain that the the person is tragically Robbed & Killed by the criminal ? For what purpose, is it all part of
    God’s “Master Plan” I know there is a difference between God Actively making something good or bad happen, and God passively allowing something, Good or Bad to Happen

    1. Thanks!
      When I get a chance – I’ll take a look at those articles.
      But I suspect they will all follow the same pattern of language usage that is strategically equivocal – in order to paint a cosmetic mask on top of the face of Calvinism.

      BTW: On the topic of appeals to mystery – and the fact that some things are “Inscrutable”
      We have to be aware of the underlying argument that predicates appeals to “inscrutability”

      Let me use an extreme example – so that you get the picture.
      —————————————————————————————
      Did you know – most people when they read the Bible – they don’t understand what it teaches about the moon?
      The bible teaches that the moon is made out of yellow and green cheese puffs

      I know that sounds unplausible and irrational
      But I now know its true – because that is what the Bible teaches.

      And the carnal mind perceives this truth as unplausible and irrational because the carnal mind cannot understand the things of god.
      Because the things of god are “inscrutable” to our finite human minds.

      You therefore must simply accept my claim as sacred divine truth.
      And if anyone disagrees – we can simply argue their disagreement fails – because divine truth is “inscrutable”.
      ———————————————————————————————————————————————–

      Do you see the problem here with this line of reasoning?
      All one has to do is Manufacture any claim they want to about god
      And when that claim is scrutinized and becomes contradiction – they simply escape that scrutiny by appealing to divine truth as “inscrutable”

      What we actually have going on here is called “Confirmation Bias”

      The Jehovah’s Witness can use the same exact argument to support their “Confirmation Bias”
      The Christian Science can use the same exact argument to support their “Confirmation Bias”
      The Muslim can use the same exact argument to support their “Confirmation Bias”

      And then we have:

      Calvinist-A who claims [X] is TRUE – and appeals to “inscrutable” to support his claim.
      Calvinist-B who claims [X] is FALSE – and appeals to “inscrutable” to support his claim.

      Now we know – LOGIC tells us that Calvinist-A and Calvinist-B cannot both be right at the same time – because they contradict each other.

      How do we resolve this without LOGIC?

      Well all we have to do – to get rid of the contradiction – is simply call the contradiction a NON-Contradiction – and say that it is “inscrutable”.

      Do you see the Pandora’s box that we open up with we appeal to the claim of “inscrutable” ?

      When someone has to appeal to the “inscrutable” argument – it should serve as a RED-FLAG that someone is blowing smoke in your face.
      And if you fall for it – you are the one who got tricked.

    2. Jeff – you asked me to look at this article and comment
      But I think it will be much more valuable to you – to put on your thinking cap – and answer some simple questions about things stated in this article.

      QUESTIONS:

      1) Is it not TRUE that in Calvinism – infallible decrees determine whatsoever will come to pass with humans?

      2) In Calvinism – is there any event which comes to pass – which is not specifically determined to do so – by an infallible decree?

      3) Are humans ever free or permitted to falsify or counter an infallible decree?

      4) Is it not TRUE that according to the doctrine – whatsoever IMPULSES come to pass within the human brain – do so infallibly?

      5) Is it possible for a human to resist an IMPULSE that comes to pass infallibly?

      6) In Calvinism – who is it that determines whether a human being will have the mental state of unshakeable confidence?

      7) In Calvinism – who is it that determines what a human being will know about god’s sovereignty?

  11. br.d , I thought about your 7 Questions, and still don’t have the answers, but just because God knows what will happen in the future, just because God Knows what Choices a Person will make in the future, that isn’t the same as God actually making the Choices for the person, making an Individual in his or her mind choose for example between going out to see a Movie, or staying at home, etc,
    With all the Suffering in America and Worldwide, I wonder when any Individual Suffers in Life, how can that Individual still Love God if they are Suffering Unbearably ? How and why should they still Love God if they are suffering Unbearably ?
    Some have said that the doctrine of “Once Saved Always Saved” is false, and that it is indeed possible for a Truly Saved Born again Christian to fall from Grace so severely that they can be forever lost and Not go to Heaven when they die, and that the doctrine
    of “Once Saved Always Saved” gives a false sense of over confidence to the Christian Believer , and is similar to when it
    Genesis 3:4 , Satan the Devil in the form of the serpent said to Eve “You will not die”

  12. br.d , I’m still pondering the 7 Questions you asked me on September 17, but also remember that there are different types of Calvinism, Not all Calvinists are 5 Point Calvinists, and adhere to all 5 points of T.U.L.I.P. , Some people are Hyper-Calvinists, etc
    Do you think that the “One Saved Always Saved” Doctrine is false, and that even if a Christian is Truly Born Again and Saved, it is possible for him or her to Fall Away from Grace, and Sin so Severely that they will go to Hell when they die, one Christian writer online said that
    “Once Saved Always Saved” is a false doctrine, and gives a false sense of security to the Believer, that they might interpret it as a
    “License to Sin” and that the “Once Saved Always Saved” doctrine is similar to the Bible verse
    Genesis 3:4 where Satan the Devil in the form of the serpent says to Eve “You will Not Die”
    Also, I think we can all agree that God Knows the Future, what choices any Individual will make 10, 20 or 30 years from now, what the World will be like 10, 20 or 30 Years from now, but God Knowing what Choices any Individual will make in the future is not the same as God directly causing or making a Human being make a Choice between let’s say going out to see a Movie, or staying home and sleeping . Or do you think Free Will is an illusion as some suggest, since humans are created in God’s image, doesn’t that imply that humans have some degree of Free Will and Freedom of Choice, even though God remains Sovereign, look at the Book of Job,
    God has unlimited power, Satan the Devil does Not, Satan can only do what God allows him to do , with God and us Humans, is it possible that we humans can only do what God permits ?
    Plus if some humans before they are born, before the Foundation of the World , if some of them are picked by God for Heaven when they die, and others for Hell , the Lake of Fire, what if a person who was Not picked by God to be Saved, hears the Gospel, is it possible they still might choose to accept Christ and go to Heaven when they die,
    With regards to preaching the Gospel, and beliefs in Fate, Destiny, if we humans go out into the nations and preach the Gospel, are we humans the cause that leads people picked by God to be Saved to hear about Christ and Accept Christ, that God needs us Humans preaching the Gospel to reach those who were already picked by God to be Saved, to make their Salvation come about, sort of like a
    “Self-Fulfilling Prophecy”

    1. Jeff
      I’m still pondering the 7 Questions you asked me on September 17, but also remember that there are different types of Calvinism, Not all Calvinists are 5 Point Calvinists, and adhere to all 5 points of T.U.L.I.P. , Some people are Hyper-Calvinists, etc
      Jeff: Do you think that the “One Saved Always Saved” Doctrine is false…

      br.d
      I take the warning verses first LOGICALLY and then literally.
      Concerning the scripture being rational – let us look at the notions of “falling away” and “persevering”.

      Why would an individual be warned about “falling away” if the possibility of “falling away” does not exist?
      Are the authors of these texts irrational thinkers?

      In Calvinism – a person’s election status is either infallibly TRUE or it is infallibly FALSE.
      And it is a logical impossibility for something that is infallibly TRUE to “fall away” from being infallibly TRUE.
      And that which is infallibly TRUE does not have to “persevere” in order to remain infallibly TRUE.

      Alternatively – if a person’s election status is infallibly FALSE – then there is nothing to “fall away” from – and nothing to “preserver”.

      So on Calvinism – both “falling away” and “persevering” are about as logical as an infallible decree losing its infallibility.

      Jeff:
      Also, I think we can all agree that God Knows the Future, what choices any Individual will make …

      br.d
      Yes I agree.
      Divine omniscience is defined as perfect knowledge of the TRUTH-VALUE of all propositions that are available to know – past, present, and future.

      However you need to put on your thinking cap and logically examine whether the function of “choice” as it is NORMATIVELY understood exists for humans in Calvinism.

      Let’s take it one step at a time.
      In Exhaustive Divine Determinism (aka Calvinism) every human impulse and inclination is 100% meticulously decreed to come to pass.
      In such case every human impulse and inclination will come to pass infallibly.
      And anything that comes to pass infallibly is humanly impossible to resist.

      So in Calvinism – all impulses which come to pass within the human brain – do so irresistibly.
      And every impulse that will come to pass in the human brain is established before humans exist.
      So humans are not granted any CHOICE in the matter of what impulses and inclinations will come to pass within their brains.

      Now – let us examine the concept of “choice”.
      Choice – as it is NORMATIVELY understood – entails a decision between alternative possibilities – such as [YES] and [NO].

      Now – let us go to the foundation of the world as is stipulated in Calvinism – where every human impulse is determined.
      Let us say – there is a given human impulse that is infallibly decreed to come to pass at Time-T
      Let us say that impulse is decreed to be [YES]

      Now as soon as that [YES] is infallibly decreed to be that human’s impulse – then what happens to the possibility of that human’s impulse being [NO]?

      The person’s impulse being [YES] is what is decreed to come to pass infallibly .
      And that logically excludes the person’s impulse being [NO].

      So as soon as a person’s impulse is infallibly decreed – then all alternatives of that which is infallibly decreed are EXCLUDED.
      In this case – the person’s impulse is decreed to infallibly be [YES]
      And that impulse is RENDERED-CERTAIN

      And along with that – all alternatives of [YES] are EXCLUDED
      And their EXCLUSION is also RENDERED-CERTAIN

      This means that for every human decision – there is ever only one single RENDERED-CERTAIN option made available to the human.
      Thus there is never any possibility of a human having alternative options from which to select – because they are EXCLUDED

      So – since there is never any such thing as alternative possibilities available for humans to select from – then we no longer have the function “choice” as it is NORMATIVELY understood.

      So in Calvinism – humans do not have the function of choice
      What they have are inclinations
      And every inclination is predestined to come to pass infallibly and irresistibly
      And the human is given NO CHOICE as to what that inclination will be – and NO CHOICE as to whether he will have it.

      Allow yourself to review those logical steps a few times – so that you can understand how the logic works.

      1. br.d , I remember a Pastor once said to myself and other Protestant Christians in a Sermon that
        “God is Not Static but Dynamic” how can we relate that to our Discussion of Calvinism, Arminianism , etc,
        would you say Calvinism is more Static than Dynamic ?
        I wonder how can Christians truly Love God when at times they suffer unbearably in life , how can they truly Love God when they suffer unbearably at times, do you agree that God does Not want people to suffer,
        I’ve heard the argument that God wants us humans to suffer to a certain extent to grow spiritually , but that God never likes it when humans suffer, God doesn’t enjoy seeing humans suffer , I’ve read about some people who endure hardships that hate God, while others become Atheists, others stay faithful , in your opinion if some humans will be in Hell or the Lake of Fire Forever, does God stop loving them ?

      2. Hi Jeff,
        The issue of suffering is a hard one!
        Some of us are subject to suffering in a way that is insignificant compared to others and we don’t know why.

        I am reminded of Annie J. Flint who was born in the 1800s
        Annie’s parents died when she was very little and she ended up being taken care of by a Christian relative.
        As a Christian girl she thought her years of suffering in poverty were over as she grew to adult-hood.
        But she was to be afflicted with a physical condition – the only solution for was a sanitariam which she remained until her death

        While there she wrote these words:

        He giveth more grace when the burdens grow greater,
        He sendeth more strength when the labors increase;
        To added afflictions He addeth His mercy,
        To multiplied trials, His multiplied peace.
        When we have exhausted our store of endurance,
        When our strength has failed ere the day is half done,
        When we reach the end of our hoarded resources
        Our Father’s full giving is only begun.
        Fear not that thy need shall exceed His provision,
        Our God ever yearns His resources to share;
        Lean hard on the arm everlasting, availing;
        The Father both thee and thy load will upbear.
        His love has no limits, His grace has no measure,
        His power no boundary known unto men;
        For out of His infinite riches in Jesus
        He giveth, and giveth, and giveth again.

    1. I’m not familiar with those two terms in regard to Calvinism vs Arminianism.

      There is however in Calvinism the assertion that the THEOS is never “passive” in regard to his role in any event.

      This came up with Calvin’s – when Christian thinkers of his day responded to his institutes.
      They objected to the idea of a god whose CAUSAL role in sin and evil was “active”
      They appealed to a notion of divine permission.
      They argued that sins and evils were permitted which would entail a “passive” or “acquiescent” role in those events.

      But Calvin have none of that because for him it represent a compromise in divine sovereignty which is not thinkable

      However Calvin was reluctant to come right out and admit that his system logically concluded a god who is the sole and exclusive author of evil. So Calvin fell into back-pedaling language and became equivocal on the matter.

      In some statements he firmly asserts author of evil and in another statements he back-pedals.

      He deferred to Augustine on the notion of divine permission – and created an ad-hoc definition for divine permission – making it simply mean CAUSE.

      1) What Calvin’s god CAUSES he permits
      2) What Calvin’s god does NOT CAUSE he does NOT permit.

      But the terms “Static” vs “Dynamic” I’m not familiar with.

  13. br.d. It seems to me that Calvinism is a far more complicated Biblical & Theological Belief system than Arminianism ,
    some have criticized Calvinism as a form of Gnosticism or “Christian Gnosticism” do you agree ?
    I think a Major part of the problem for many American Christians, including myself at times, is that Many American Christians simply do not have the time to read and study the Bible & Theology in great detail, they are so busy with Work, their Social Lives, Sleep, it’s difficult for them make the time to read and study the Bible in Great Detail, the Bible is difficult to Interpret and Understand many times.
    What is your Opinion of Roman Catholic Apologetic Arguments, and Biblical Arguments for Roman Catholicism, used by
    Catholic Apologists, do you think those Catholic Apologists misuse the Scripture and take many verses out of Context to support their Views, Are there “Catholic Calvinists” Do you agree with Bible Alone, Scripture Alone Sola Scriptura ?

    1. Hi Jeff,
      Yes I think your analysis is correct – Calvinism is a much more complicated system
      Part of that is because it is a system that doesn’t really want to be rightly understood.
      I know that sounds strange – but you have to understand the psychological burdens which come with what logically follows with Exhaustive Divine Determinism.

      Take for example – the understanding that in Calvinism “whatsoever comes to pass is determined at the foundation of the world”

      Now that would have to include human inclinations.
      So just consider how you would feel to know that every inclination that will ever come to pass within your brain is predestined by an decree which will make it come to pass infallibly.

      Imagine how you would feel to come to grips with the fact that you have no choice in the matter of any inclination that comes to pass within your brain. And you have no choice as to whether or not your body will infallibly obey those inclinations.

      That is not what NORMAL people experience in their lives.
      Yet that is what logically follows from the doctrine.

      The obvious human response to that is to not accept it and instead look for ways to treat the doctrine AS-IF it is not what it really is.

      On Catholic doctrines – I don’t have sufficient knowledge about them to know.

      1. br.d , Right and you think Calvinism is in many ways Unbiblical and based on Non-Biblical Theology and Reasoning, but is there in a Sense a Double Standard with Calvinism, for Example if a Human being commits a Murder, Rape, Robbery or other crime, it’s also a Sin, but if God does the Exact same thing it isn’t wrong or a Sin if God does it, that anything God does is automatically Good and Not a Sin, but if human beings do the exact same thing, it’s a Sin and Wrong, similar to an Expression I heard
        a character portraying President Richard Nixon in a TV Commercial , the character portraying Nixon said
        “If the President does it, it isn’t a Crime”

      2. Hi Jeff,
        I certainly can’t see how double-mindedness can be Bible based since Jesus commands us to “Let your communication be yea yea or nay nay – for anything else comes of evil”

        In other words something cannot be TRUE simply when I want it to be TRUE – and then FALSE simply when I want it to be FALSE.

        And once one discovers the underlying foundational core of Calvinism – it soon becomes clear that Calvinist language is a “Yea-Nay” language – in which conceptions are asserted as TRUE – and then treated AS-IF they are FALSE.

        The doctrine for example – specifically stipulates that whatsoever comes to pass – is the consequence of a decree that is infallible.
        Which makes whatever is decreed to come to pass in the future – come to pass infallibly.
        And yet the Calvinist wants to treat future human actions AS-IF they are preventable.
        In the face of a doctrine which stipulates those actions are NON-EXISTENT without an infallible decree – and NON-PREVENTABLE with an infallible decree

        So this becomes one of many examples of how Calvinists end up treating their own doctrine AS-IF it is FALSE

        Their minds have become conditioned such that treating their own doctrine AS-IF it is FALSE is normalcy and Biblical to them.

        Are we supposed to conceive of that mental condition as from scripture?

        Unfortunately – it gets worse for them because the unsuspecting Calvinist soon learns to lower his standards of Christian ethics and lower himself into the language of sophistry, sometimes deceptive language, and often times misleading language – in order to make the system appear acceptable to the Non-Calvinist Christian world.

        So I often find myself feeling sorry for Calvinists because they appear to be captured.

        I once saw a drawing of a monkey with its hand in a glass jar.
        The jar was nailed to the floor
        The jar had a banana in it
        The monkey could get his hand into the jar and onto the banana
        But the mouth of the jar was not wide enough for him to get both his hand and the banana out of the jar.
        He didn’t want to remove his hand from the jar – because he would have to give up the banana.
        So he was captured by his unwillingness to let go of that which ensnared him.

        That is the way I see Calvinists.
        There is something about the doctrine they very much want.
        But they don’t want its logical consequences.
        And at the same time they can’t allow themselves to let go of it.
        So they’er minds are captured by it.

        They tell themselves – they have the doctrine
        But the doctrine actually has them.

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