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Calvinism!

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Calvinism!

Post  Mark on Sat Jan 31, 2009 10:27 am

Ok so I know some of us here believe in the Calvinism view of salvation. I myself am still learning and figuring things out. But Calvinism believes in "Unconditional Election" meaning God has chosen people who he will save and not our free will. Basically Calvinism teaches that we have no say in being saved or not. Calvinism teaches that man does not choose to believe but God puts the Holy Spirit in those who he has chosen to be saved and the ability to believe.

Now doesn't John 3:15, 16 destroy this explanation or this way of teaching. "That whosoever (meaning that none are excluded from being lost and none are excluded from being saved) believes in him should not perish, but have Eternal Life. For God so loved the world that he gave His Only Begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have Everlasting life."

Like I said I am still learning but John 3:15,16 basically destroys that explanation. But in the end why does it all matter? In the end isn't all about our Faith and us believing that Jesus Christ died for our sins. So please those of you who believe in the Calvinism view of salvation or are leaning towards it. Please respond. Oh and if I am not interpreting what Calvinism teaches properly then please correct me. Thanks.
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Re: Calvinism!

Post  Rodel on Sat Jan 31, 2009 1:13 pm

Hey Mark, I think to start understanding or to somewhat being close to understanding Calvinism, we have to start under the 5 points of TULIP:

Total Depravity (or total inability)
Unconditional Election
Limited Atonement
Irresistible Grace
Perseverance of the Saints

I myself couldn't really understand or even question this in the beginning, but as I get into it, I began to understand which convinced me to believe that it is true, and shows the more to me, that God is a Holy God! God is sovereign over all things! Man... there's not even a word enough to describe who God is!

During the time of Adam and Eve... do you think that that was an accident they sinned against God? Or did that just showed to us that we are in no condition to follow and love God to our fullest? Thus the Total Depravity is one of the points in Calvinism (Claire, Jeff, anyone, correct me if I'm wrong). This is our very nature, at its best.

With that mentioned, I'm convinced to believe that a person cannot, and will never, ever have a will or desire, etc. to have any business with God, unless, God himself intervenes (for the lack of a better word) and reveal things to him, from which God has chosen for Himself (Eph. 1:3-10) way before we even existed.

It was never for us to say, "I accepted the Lord". Man... shame on us to even say that we chose God. Where's our humility? We're the ones under grace. We're condemned by our own very nature. It is God's work. We've heard it many times that we have nothing to do with our salvation, and that is true. Yet, some still believe that one can choose to be saved or not. I don't understand how that's so. Yes, it's true that we do respond to the Gospel, but through what means?

It is God that will reveal things at His right time, causing us to believe and to put our faith in Jesus to save us from the wrath to come.

I don't see, nor can I come to a conclusion of man choosing God for himself, but rather God choosing us, that we might come to God with humility, for forgiveness, grace and sanctification of our sins.

This is just one part and I think we're just beginning to scratch the surface. Let's keep going.

Mark, I want to know how or why you think John 3:15, 16 destroys the explanation as you mentioned in your original post. Oh and can you break down your posts? It's a bit hard to read it as in big chunk. LOL! study
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Re: Calvinism!

Post  methodikal on Sat Jan 31, 2009 6:27 pm

Rodel wrote:...Oh and can you break down your posts? It's a bit hard to read it as in big chunk. LOL! study

Done and done!
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Re: Calvinism!

Post  Mark on Sat Jan 31, 2009 9:23 pm

Thanks Rodel for responding! I myself watched this debate over Calvinism and Arminianims last night. I totally understand where you are coming from and all the scriptures backing up what you are saying. I also understand where the Arminian side is coming from. I can see where both sides and coming from and scriptures to back up both sides. From what I see it all depends no how you interpret the word. We all know that the bible is the truth and it cannot contradict itself so some how both sides are right. I came to the conclusion for myself that for now I stand in the middle. I believe in some certain points from both sides. So I really don't know, and Rodel cancel what I said about John 3:16. It really is all about word play and how the person interprets what it says and what it means to how they comprehend it. Like I said I have so much more to learn.

Here is a link to the debate that I watched last night

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wym7MGmzDY4&feature=PlayList&p=662162D55A42F003&index=9
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Re: Calvinism!

Post  joshcalu on Sun Feb 01, 2009 2:25 am

Arghhhh, another question leading to 100 more questions!

Thx for the link, Mark. I didn't get to ALL 10 but the few that I listened were really informative. Notice how the moderator says he is neutral but he continually questions the Calvinistic point of view during the debate, lol! But it's crazy how the he was once a Muslim and later found God, or God found him (whichever doctrine you agree with).

Just to quote what one of the guys said in the video, " I consider myself to be a child of God, first." That being said, whichever doctrine you agree with or adopt, constantly remind yourself that your relationship, your faith, and your spiritual walk with God trumps everything.

I've only begun to research and understand these ideas maybe a week or so ago so I don't think I have enough Biblical knowledge to explain either side well. I just want to encourage everyone to at least watch and listen to the first clip or two. Hopefully it will want you to read your Bible and try to understand it even more... that being said, carry on with the discussion so I can read more, hehe...

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Re: Calvinism!

Post  Mark on Sun Feb 01, 2009 10:06 am

Yea man the commentator basically says that he is leaning more to the arminian side in the later episodes. But seriously I was reading all the scriptures they quoted and the verses before and after that verse. Like I said it really all depends on how you translate what it is saying. They kept going back and forth about how certain verses were not meant to say this or that. It really just confused me more. Just keep watching and reading the word. Let me know what you think. Everyone else please put your input. Thanks. Very Happy
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Re: Calvinism!

Post  Rodel on Sun Feb 01, 2009 3:13 pm



The middle guy is pretty annoying. In the second part of the video, he just cut off Pt. Stewart in the middle of his explanation and went off on his salvation experience and based it on Proverbs 22:6 and then he refers to a seed for which God will draw from (6:12 in youtube). What an epic fail... he just blew that out of proportion! That has nothing with salvation. He based his point of view from his personal experience rather than the Scriptures itself. That’s a big no-no; I’m sure you guys can agree with that. He should've just stayed in the sideline as he should. scratch [/rant]

Everything was good in the first part of the video until about at 2:00. I'm not claiming that Pt. Ramsay (Arminianism side) is wrong, but his response makes me want to jump out of my seats. If you listen carefully to what he was saying - to me, it sounded contradicting. It starts from 6:52 to 8:57. He said that the drawing to God was for all men, or it is of God's desire. Let's read what the scripture says in 1 Tim. 2:3-6 for us to see the whole picture.

He said that man can choose salvation or deny it, but that doesn't necessarily mean that God isn't sovereign over that. He said that God knows who will say Yes and when - and who will say No. He said that drawing to God isn't irresistible with a scripture to back up in Matt. 23:37

My question to that is this... If God knows who will say Yes and who will say No, then doesn't it just proves to us God had established who will be saved just as Eph. 1:4-6 have said. I agree that when Pt. Ramsay said that he believes that God's desire is for all men to be drawn to Him (1 Tim. 2:4). But with the fact that God knows who will respond, or who will make the decision, or who will choose, or whatever terms you’d like to use for accepting salvation, clearly crosses out the idea of God forcefully impressing his love to people, as Pt. Ramsay refers to the old saying... "You can drag a whole horse to water, but you can't make him drink".

God will never, ever force Himself to those who rejects him continuously, or perhaps he never have to. It is God who will decide for Himself whom He will compassion and whom He will not (Rom. 9:15). And for us to understand what Irresistible Grace is, then I suggest we continue going through each doctrines. Pt. Ramsay just blurted it out saying God's drawing isn't irresistible without going through what the doctrine is all about.

So I go back to the first point of TULIP... Total Depravity or Total Inability. The first point of TULIP - T... shows our condition to have no ability to respond to God's grace, unless God causing man to believe and put his faith in Jesus for Himself. He knows whom He will call as John John 10:27 says.

I appreciate the middle guy's testimony of how he got saved... but it wasn't an accident nor did he have that longing to seek God on his own. First of all, he was dead in his sins (Eph. 2:5 & Eph 2:1). A dead being will not be able to respond on its own.

I didn’t watch the whole thing, but I think, if anyone really would want to learn what Calvinism is - we have to stick to the first point of TULIP, then progress to the next. I suggest that as we finish Calvinism, then we can make comparisons with the Arminianism side.

From my side, I am only trying to understand the other side. I've been going to church but I've never been exposed to solid doctrines until recently. So let's all learn together and hope that the church will teach these things.

I'll continue watching the rest of the videos. Thanks Mark!!
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Re: Calvinism!

Post  jeffrocks on Mon Feb 02, 2009 8:53 am

I only watched the 1st and 2nd part so far. I love Rev. Stuart (calvinist) and his accent. People with an accent like that, its like I can never get mad at them for some reason. And the other guy is representing Word of Faith?! WoF is a little wishy-washy. I digress...

I just want to start of with a disclaimer. Calvinism, because of its title, is assumed to be a “man-made” teaching by John Calvin, the great Reformer. But as you start to examine it more closely, you'll see it has a biblical precedent. The 5 points was not founded or thought up by anyone because of some special revelation to them. Its always been taught in the bible. TULIP is just one of the many elements that make up the Reformed Theological position on Scripture. As with any position, there are varying extremes that naturally arise when people say, “live how they want after they state a prayer and still make it to Heaven”, while others say, “God is sovereign, so we don’t need to witness because all of those who are to be saved will eventually be saved.” Both of these views are NEVER supported in scripture. Hyper-Calvinism is deemed heretical and should not be confused with historical Calvinism/Reformed Theology. Also, if you don't hold on to the Reformed position, it doesn't mean you are not a Christian. These are not essentials in that, if you don't believe in them, you are not saved. Essentials would be stuff like the Trinity, Sola Scriptura (By Scripture Alone --infallible/inerrant), and being saved by grace alone, through faith, not by works. As long as if you have repented and put your faith in Christ, you're saved. No matter if you hold on to Arminianism or Calvinism soteriology.

I think rodel (see you soon bro!) made a good point in understanding the 5 points in order. We are kind of skipping around and as a result, can cause some confusion. We should focus on each point one by one and discuss any questions we may have. I think it'll start to all come together and make more sense (I hope!) this way. Although, most people do tend to get hung up on the 'U' and 'L'. It might be the place where we might park and have longer discussions. I know personally, those were the toughest pills to swallow. So lets start off with the 'T' in TULIP, Total Depravity, or Total inability. This ties in to our babies discussion as well. For the sake of time and because I NEED to sleep soon, I'll post what a pastor friend of mine wrote about the 'T', to which I agree with him (Rodel also covered some of this already too):

Total Depravity does not mean that every man is as evil as he could be, nor that man is usable to recognize the will of God, or yet, the he is unable to do any good towards fellow man, or lastly give “outward” allegiance to the worship of God.

Total Depravity means is that when man fell in the Garden of Eden, he fell in his “totality”. The whole personality of man has been affected by the Fall, and sin extends to the whole man – his will, his understanding, his affections and all else.

The Bible teaches with absolute clarity that man, by nature is:

o Dead – Romans 5:12
o Bound – 2 Timothy 2:25
o Blind and Deaf – Mark 4 (Parable of Sower and Soils)
o Uninstructable – 1 Corinthians 2:14
o Naturally Sinful: by/from birth: Psalm 51:5 and Psalm 53:5
by practice/choice: Genesis 6:5

The above show man is his natural state. Now we must ask:

* Can the Dead raise themselves?
* Can the Bound free themselves?
* Can the Blind give themselves sight?
* Can the Deaf give themselves hearing?
* Can the Slaves redeem themselves?
* Can the Uninstructable teach themselves?
* Can the Naturally Sinful change themselves?

The overwhelming answer to all of the above questions should be a resounding NO.

Lets examine how scripture even shows the above,

“Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean?” asks Job, “not one!” (Job 14:4).

Also:

“Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots” asks Jeremiah, “If they can, then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil” (Jeremiah 13:23).

Man is like Lazarus in his tomb, we are bound hand and foot; corruption has taken hold upon us. Just as there was no glimmer of life in the dead body of Lazarus, so there is no “inner receptive spark” in man’s heart (Jeremiah 17:9). But, the Lord performs the miracle – both with the physically dead, and the spiritually dead; for “you hath he quickened – made alive – who were dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1). Salvation, by its very nature, MUST be “of the Lord”.

The acceptance or rejection of Total Depravity as a true Biblical statement of man’s condition by nature will determine your attitude towards the point of Unconditional Election. For, if man is indeed dead and held captive, blind, ect., then the remedy for all these conditions must lie outside of man himself (that is, it lies with God alone).

Agree? Disagree? Lets build...

I'm still on the road to learning more about about the reformed, side, but I am starting to grasp the ideas. Its funny though, I've been listening to preachers like John MacArthur, John Piper, CJ Mahaney, Mark Driscoll, Paul Washer, ect... oldie but goodie preachers like Charles Spurgeon, Jonathan Edwards, and listening to artists like Shai Linne, Lecrae, Flame, Stephen the Levite... and I just recently discovered all those folks hold on to Reformed theology. I don't think its a coincidence. Its not like I didn't chose to listen to them, but God effectually called me to listen to them... okay.. I kid, I kid...

I pray these discussions will lead you to knowing and loving God more than ever. This is some of the heavy lifting a lot of Christians tend to avoid or are just ignorant about. I praise God you guys are willing to do the research and devote the time to learning these things. I also hope it will cause you to dig into the Scripts and more about theology.... because it matters. Our theology dictates our actions and motives. So its important to get it right. Be sure you apply the things you learn too. We can get 'theologically obese' at times and have our heads filled with all this theological stuff, but it will do us no good if there is no application/effect in our personal lives. And finally, don't stay up too late!!!

Soli Deo Gloria!
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Re: Calvinism!

Post  CLER on Mon Feb 02, 2009 7:23 pm

Jeff... you rock! like them and i go like this bounce and
Agreed with jeff, that excerpt... was that Pastor Damon's?

Just to add, yes we make sure that we apply this in our lives. One main thing that happened to me as I became exposed to Reformed Theology, my view of God has changed big time. This may be a non-essential, but it was an important thing to me. I became so little and He became so big in my perspective.

Let's build on the T section. We tend to say yes we agree, but when we start discussing about babies or people who's never heard of God we forget about total depravity. So let's build build build...

Oh for the , build means discuss, sharpen one another... lovingly and with humility.

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Re: Calvinism!

Post  KuyaAirl on Mon Feb 02, 2009 7:39 pm

Mark wrote:Thanks Rodel for responding! I myself watched this debate over Calvinism and Arminianims last night. I totally understand where you are coming from and all the scriptures backing up what you are saying. I also understand where the Arminian side is coming from. I can see where both sides and coming from and scriptures to back up both sides. From what I see it all depends no how you interpret the word. We all know that the bible is the truth and it cannot contradict itself so some how both sides are right. I came to the conclusion for myself that for now I stand in the middle. I believe in some certain points from both sides. So I really don't know, and Rodel cancel what I said about John 3:16. It really is all about word play and how the person interprets what it says and what it means to how they comprehend it. Like I said I have so much more to learn.


a link to the debate that I watched last night

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wym7MGmzDY4&feature=PlayList&p=662162D55A42F003&index=9






Here is a video Mark..Check it out

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9W2fuFWUIL0
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Re: Calvinism!

Post  methodikal on Wed Feb 04, 2009 8:15 pm

Good word Jeff...gna look into this more... study
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