Archive for February, 2013


Piper paints himself into a corner on abortion


  • I have no words. My heart is weeping for them. Such truth.
  • Well said
  • Anthony Hedrick I really appreciate John having the courage to speak out in this way. I will say it once more because it needs to be said – While I agree with John’s statement, I do not agree with his view of sovereignty, for if he and other Calvinists are right that God CAUSES every event in the universe as man makes NO authentic choices, then God (their God) has CAUSED the Roe verses Wade decision which has culminated in this slaughter of the innocent. There is no way around it. President Obama has only commended what God has preordained. This is where a wooden high-sovereignty takes us and “no matter how many times he says it” we will never escape this conclusion. In John’s view of sovereignty there is not one iota of chance, not a single drop of hope for change, and man makes no choices (good or bad). Every movement in the cosmos has been fixed. This is the fatalism and theistic determinism of Calvinism. Be angry with me if you like but this is the truth. Thousands of theologians and philosophers more intelligent than I will affirm what I have written here. The God of high-sovereignty is made out to be the God of both heaven and hell and all humanity- before they are born – are damned to either heaven or hell before they have drawn a single breath. This is “particular election” or “minute sovereignty ” so why oppose it when it is God’s will? So then, while John sounds good, he is wrong in his complaint. Obama is only President by God’s decree. One of John’s favorite scriptures quoted in his World Magazine article,”Governor of all – God was sovereign over Sept. 11, and so we have hope,” was Job 42:2 “I know that you can do all things; no purpose of yours can be thwarted.” My point is this, if God was sovereign over September 11, 2001 then he was sovereign over January 22, 1973. Read Piper as he speaks for himself, Regrettably, most Christians rarely analyze what they watch or hear.
    Clarification. In response to an email from an angry Piper cub, I take this stand on several accounts: 1. It is opinion made out to be orthodoxy under the label Reformed. 2. The dogma ( that’s what it is) assaults the character and love of God for ALL people 3. Yes, without question renders evangelism and missions an act of futility – people can do it but it doesn’t really matter – what has been decided by God needs no human contribution. Preaching and prayer are not the means as God’s predetermined will makes any other possibility, impossible 4. It brings people into theological bondage with cult like allegiance to specific teachers and interpretations. I could say more but this is enough. If I oppose Word Faith, The Church of Christ and Seventh Day Adventicism as aberrant, I must oppose Calvinism with the same vigor even if the spokespersons are eloquent, heavily cited, well educated and advancing themselves at every click of the mouse.
    M., WRITES…  Tony, thank you for once again showing the world that Christians are divided and against each other. Instead of encouraging John ( by liking the post or just not saying anything), you felt the need to publicly tear into a brother in Christ because of a secondary issue. Usually it’s Calvinist that are accused of being zealous to the point of offense. I understand your view and respect it, but am disappointed in the way you expressed it.
    MY RESPONSE:  Thanks, M. You have hit upon my reason for such passion regarding this subject. Just type into your browser, “Southern Baptist Calvinism” and see what comes up. I have no problem with Calvinists per se. I have on my shelves, Piper, Carson, Keller and many others. I am a fan of Alistair Begg but what I am concerned about is the very thing you accuse me of – divisiveness. At this very moment, how many churches are being split by an unrelenting and uncompromising Calvinism? “The hand cannot say to the eye, I have no need of thee.” The fact is we need each other. There is too much theological muscle flexing under the guise of “desiring the glory of God.” To my mind there is a move (consider the ESV with not one non-Calvinists commentator) for theological domination. No matter what you think of my style, I feel compelled to alert the unsuspecting and unthinking (Did you read and consider what I have written?) of this encroachment.
    M’s RESPONSE:  Tony, I am a Calvinist. I did not come to this belief because I go to a Calvinist college, nor do I attend a Calvinist Church. But the words that I read in the bible and the testimony of God’s unimaginable grace in my life has left me with this view of The Lord. I find it interesting you talk about a theological domination. I do recognize the popularity of Calvinism amount young people ( including my self), but you talk about it as if Satan is the one behind this movement and Christian need to be careful not to fall into his trap. I agree with the unloving muscle that Calvinist tend to flex, but it is both sides my friend. We do not change anything when we look and act the same. I love God, and then my brother and pray that that is always first and foremost in my life. Every denomination and Christian belief seems to carry its own set of issues. I think I remember you telling us in class that you worked with Benny Hinn in your younger days if I remember correct? Mistakes, brokenness, division, we all have it. In your posts you labeled my belief in the same category as Word Faith and Seventh Day adventist. If that is how you feel then you cannot even love me as a brother in Christ because you don’t look at me as in Christ. I will continue to wrestle with my theology and how to imitate Jesus’ life, but I pray that I never get to the belief that I need to fight fire with fire, but instead continue to learn how to fight fire with love.
    MY RESPONSE to M: I appreciate your kind spirit in your response. I regret to say that it is most difficult to get a lemmings attention and most everything under the sun has been tried. This is why I refuse to be a milquetoast. I do consider you a brother as I do Piper, Begg, Chandler, Keller and on and on. I also consider Word Faith, Church of Christ and Seventh Day to be brothers though misguided on certain matters. I particularly dislike their isolationism. As I say, my shelves are dotted with books from Calvinist authors. I cannot say I find the same among my Calvinist friends. They intentionally limit themselves to certain thinkers and theologians. In all you have said, I have made no case for Arminianism as I find it riddled with false assumptions as well. I am not an Arminian, nor do I defend such a position. I am simply a non-Calvinist. I am the opposite to you, M. I grew up in Five-Point Calvinism and after leaving this influence, I saw the scriptures come to life in a different way. I no longer came to understand the Bible as chemistry to be distilled but as a love letter to be embraced. The other night I took in a debate between James R. White and Michael E. Brown. I felt (as everyone did) they came to a draw and that’s what I think happens when we carefully consider both opinions and for me this it all that it is – OPINION. You have your opinion and I have mine. Neither are heresy until one takes it too far. Of the two camps, the Calvinists have the lions share of intellect on their side but let me clear, while it is nice to be smart, the Bible warns us about glorying intelligence, philosophy and human reasoning. I think Calvinism is mostly philosophy beginning with it’s conclusion regarding the nature of sovereignty. Years ago, I read Basinger and Basinger’s. “Predestination and Free-Will, Four Views of Divine Sovereignty and Human Freedom.” After reading this, I came to the conclusion that the only thing I oppose is the strong dogmatism adopted by Calvinists everywhere. By the way, I work along side Calvinists and neither of us are muzzled.
    M’s CONCLUDING COMMENT: Thank you Tony for being someone I look up to. I find pleasure in reading your thoughts and words that you share. I am young in the Lord, please pray that God will continue to grow my wisdom and confidence. Thank you again for taking the time to have this discussion with me.

A REVIEW: “The Life of Pie”

Western Hinduism comes off as never having any excrement in the bottom of the boat. Over two-hundred days and no excrement in the bottom of the boat. In western Hinduism, everyone is re-incarnated as a swashbuckler, Ballerina or Captain of a tall masted ship but this is not true in a cast world of the Brahman and Dahlit. There is excrement in the bottom of the boat.

I went to see the movie last night. It is a masterful job of story telling and cinematography (I have never seen a film as well done). And there is some truth in the film, like when the father says something like this to Picine, “You must decide on something. Pick any of the religions, I don’t care but you can’t believe them all for when you do, you believe NOTHING.” This is truth accurately spoken.

The problem with Religious Pluralism is that it only benefits Hinduism as Hinduism requires no particular belief. In fact, in Hinduism, the only wrong belief is to believe that there is “right belief (Orthodoxy).” This sort of view never elevates religion but only demeans it by saying believe whatever you like, in the end, it doesn’t matter. This is what many people maintain. Faith is simply a matter of subjective opinion. At the end of the movie we see the message that they want you to take home. Movies are not values free unless it is a mindless comedy like The Three Stooges or Charlie Chaplin . There is an agenda to have you believe something.

The final statement tells what we have sat for more than two hours to hear. Pi tells the Japanese investigators two stories, both are untrue. One is the fantasy of his experience and the other is what the insurance adjusters want to hear. Neither story has any merit in reality. At the end Pi looks at the author (Yann Martel) and asks a question that begs a Hindu answer, “Which story do you like the best?” Essentially, Martel answers, “The one with the Tiger ( Richard Parker)” Mr. Patel responds with, “And so it is with God.” I know I am paraphrasing but you (I hope) get the idea. It doesn’t matter which story you take for yourself (Voodoo, Mormonism, Scientology, Ekankar). Any story will do. With God there is no one story – only the one you like the best. At the end, God is so magnanimous as to shrug His shoulders and turn a blind eye to stupidity or ignorance.

This is not what Jesus taught or the Apostles believed. Let’s quit playing games here. Everyone wants to include Jesus as one of many “Ascended Masters” but then do not care a lick about the things he taught.

Hinduism, Islam and Judaism want Christians to throw away their Bibles – our only source for knowing anything about Jesus. All religions will allow Jesus to be anything he likes as longs as he is not God incarnate (Emmanuel, God with us).

Biblical Judaism and Christianity rejects this idea completely. There is a right and wrong story and if you get the story wrong you are in serious trouble. Jesus was not in the least magnanimous. He called the Pharisees, “Blind leaders of the blind. Both shall stumble and fall into the ditch”

In the Old Testament, statements like the following are everywhere, “The Lord said to Moses.” “The Lord spoke unto Abraham, saying.” Either God did or He didn’t. The Bible story doesn’t allow for wiggle room. It emphatically claims truth by describing the ULTIMATE of both LIFE and ETERNITY, humanities Origins, Identity, Meaning, Morality and Destiny.

Christianity doesn’t not gloss over excrement in the bottom of the boat.


Dan and Me: My Coming Out as a Friend of Dan Cathy and Chick-fil-A