14
Jun
09

Hyper-Calvinism and the “IF” Problem

Within the context of foreordination conditional verses make no sense without the aid of textual or circumstantial manipulation.

I have learned that those who have their minds made up will comparmentalize ( theological provincialism – retreat to their island) and pay no further attention to the facts. They turn a blind eye or redress the obvious. Cult devotees are particularly guilty of this as are some sectarian groups.  

“*Compel them to come in!” 

          *(persuade, necessitate)

            Isaiah 55:7

          “Let the wicked forsake his way, and return…           

            The Lord… will have mercy.”

            1 John 1:7-9

           “If we walk in the light…  If we confess our sins.

             The blood of Jesus Christ cleanest…”

             Matthew 11:28

            “Come unto me, all ye that labour…                

             I will give you rest.”

             John 6:37

            “Him that cometh to me…                    

            I will in no wise cast out.”

            Romans 10:9

            “If thou shalt confess with thy mouth…

             and shalt believe (keep on believing) in thine heart….

             Thou shalt be saved.”

            John 1:12

            “As many as received him…that believe

            (keep on believing) on his name…       

            To them gave he power to become the Sons of God.”

            John 3:16

           “Whoever believeth

            (continues to believe) in him…                                  

            Should not perish but have everlasting life.”

            Colossians 1:23

           “If ye continue in the faith…                 

            Present you holy and unblameable in his sight.”

 These examples can be supported by seventy-seven other verses from the New Testament.

Would anyone on their own come to the conclusions of Calvinism?  Does the Spirit of God through the Word of God supernaturally instruct it, or is it wherever believed the result of human instruction? It is seemingly the evidence of many, that simply given the Bible, a believer does not read out of the Scripture the theological principles of high-Calvinism. Rather, it is most commonly understood that God offers salvation to all of those that believe the Gospel and call upon His name, repenting of their sins.  The 5-points of Calvinism appear no where in scripture where the uncomplicated offer of free grace to all does. One would be hard pressed to find any other view, world over, except where Calvinism has been taught to those already holding Christian convictions.  Rarely is Calvinism ever presented to those in unbelief but almost always is a device of post-Christian proselytism.  High-Calvinism concentrates its evangelistic fervor on those who already attest to being evangelized. All hyper sectarianism grows by instructing existing Christians of some “greater truth” or “deeper experience” that will catapult an individual beyond the normal spectrum of common Christian existence. 

Support for high-sovereignty is not clearly pronounced in Judaism or the early church until Augustine (354-430).

Hebrews 11:6

“But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.”

 To this writer, it seems superfluous to reward a person for that which he has made no contribution to. Yet, there is a reward when an individual does the unexpected when he is not forced to do what he freely chooses to do.  This appears to be the case in the above text. Faith is that which pleases God. Not just faith, but the kind of faith which, against all odds, believes that God exists and then diligently pursues God.

Calvinists will argue that the non-Calvinists rely on works, their own faith. Not so. A man can be put in a rain barrel, the lid nailed shut and all that he needs to reach heaven is inside of that barrel. Like the thief on the cross, one must simply come to his senses and call out on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and he will be saved. Salvation is Christ plus nothing.

The most difficult challenge to high Calvinism is that which James Arminius encountered while preparing to defend Calvinism against Koornherts. If Calvinism is true, then God (our God) is the author of sin. He is the cause of the fall of Lucifer, the angels and man. God becomes a dualistic entity with the capacity for both good and evil. This is contrary to Scriptures that clearly state that God cannot sin nor even look upon evil.

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