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Featured Calvinism

Discussion in 'Christian Debate Forum' started by John Caldwell, Oct 7, 2019.

  1. John Caldwell

    John Caldwell Well-Known Member

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    When discussing issues and doctrine probably the first thing needed is to arrive at a common definition of terms.

    “Calvinism”, among other things, is a word that gets tossed around a lot.

    Many Baptists consider “Calvinism” to refer to the “Five Points of Calvinism”.

    Typically Reformed churches teach one cannot be a Baptist and a Calvinist.

    The name “Calvinism” was coined by Lutherans to describe Calvin’s teachings regarding communion.

    I do not see where this has been defined before, but I do see that a lack of definition has caused some issues.

    I see it two ways.

    I think Calvinism (historic Calvinism) is the teaching’ of the Reformed church (Presbyterian). It is based on Calvin’s work and Beza’s classification and exposition of Calvin’s works.

    Within Baptist (and often evangelical) circles “Calvinism” usually means an affirmation of the five points of Calvinism. IMHO this should also include Calvinistic presuppositions that are foundational to how Calvinists understand the Five Points (e.g., Penal Substitution Theory; divine retributive justice). So while some have offered Martin Luther (for example) as a Calvinist I’d separate him from the group because of his presentation of the Atonement. I’d not consider myself a Calvinist for the same reason.

    But that is just how I would use the term. What does “Calvinism” mean for most here? Is there a common definition?
     
  2. CharismaticLady

    CharismaticLady Well-Known Member

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    What I know about Calvinism, I've learned on the forums. Frankly, I was shocked!
     
  3. John Caldwell

    John Caldwell Well-Known Member

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    I actually had a pretty good opinion of Calvinism until I learned about them on the forums :p .

    It's like the Gandhi quote - “I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.”

    What I learned is that not all Calvinists are equal. There are different views and different definitions.

    I just do not know how it is used on the Christian Board.

     
  4. Enoch111

    Enoch111 Well-Known Member

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    Yes. Calvinism (TULIP or Five Point Calvinism) and Reformed Theology regarding salvation are identical. And of course we have the Presbyterian Churches as well as the Reformed Churches who hold to this belief. Lutherans are somewhat different.

    While the Westminster Confession of Faith clearly lays out Reformed Theology (some of which is perfectly biblical) there is also the 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith (which is almost identical). Spurgeon was a Calvinist, but one can see in his sermons how conflicted he was.

    Most Baptists would not consider themselves as coming out of the Reformation (but descending from pre-Reformation churches, and therefore non-Calvinistic). But it seems that Calvinism is infecting many Baptist churches today. The SBC seminary adopted this position after Albert Mohler Jr. became President in 1993. John MacArthur is another well-known -- and dangerous -- Calvinistic Baptist. Dangerous because he sounds so good while he promotes false teachings.

    For all Christians it is important to know whether Five Point Calvinism is a false Gospel or the true Gospel. And for those who have no interest in what theologians believe (or not believe) TULIP is contrary to the true Gospel of Grace. When anyone denies that Christ died for the sins of the whole world, he or she is already promoting *another gospel* (Galatians 1). And any other gospel is accursed.
     
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  5. Willie T

    Willie T Well-Known Member

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    Frankly, if you are not Calvinist, you don't believe that stuff anyway. And if you are, there's little chance any of the rhetoric here will sway you any. Many of us really do need to quit thinking we, and our "powerful" words, are The Holy Spirit, Jr., and let Him do the persuading.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2019
  6. John Caldwell

    John Caldwell Well-Known Member

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    I guess what I'm getting at is not the correctness or error of the philosophy but how it is defined here.

    Is it "TULIP"? Or is it TULIP along with traditional Calvinistic presuppositions (like the nature of divine forgiveness, divine retributive justice, Penal Substitution Theory).

    The reason I ask is TULIP was just an answer to the Remonstrant's five articles. But the Remonstrants (and all of Arminianism) is of a Calvinistic trajectory (they come from the same place...the same "mother church"...but separated over the issue of predestination).
     
  7. Willie T

    Willie T Well-Known Member

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    Well, if it is dealt with here like Christian Reconstructionism is, I doubt there is anyone who really knows what Calvinism is. I sure didn't know what CR was until I began studying it a few years ago. (I still don't adhere to it, but at least now I know what it is.)
     
  8. John Caldwell

    John Caldwell Well-Known Member

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    That's what I love about these forums. We get to learn about other understanding and hopefully reexamine a few of our own and grow in the process.
     
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  9. CharismaticLady

    CharismaticLady Well-Known Member

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    I'm the opposite. I like the people but have to ask myself why Jesus said of the Sardis church age, the age of the Reformation, "you have a reputation that you are alive, but you are dead." But after hearing the doctrine, it is quite evident that it is totally unholy and scripturally twisted. That is what shocked me.
     
  10. CharismaticLady

    CharismaticLady Well-Known Member

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    I bought one of his books and by the second page, I had to stop reading. It seemed there were demons flying off the pages. So much hatred. What does he use to write with? Blood?
     
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  11. lforrest

    lforrest Well-Known Member Staff Member Admin

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    Does indoctrination build faith? Is God the only one who can give an increase?
     
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  12. Willie T

    Willie T Well-Known Member

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    You've been here awhile. How many people's minds have you seen changed from the endless bickering on this (or any) forum?

    And just ask about the six million Jews murdered in the Holocaust when you get to Heaven, if the Nazi indoctrination worked on the German citizens. (Our local 4-story Holocaust Museum is the saddest thing I have ever experienced.)
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2019
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  13. lforrest

    lforrest Well-Known Member Staff Member Admin

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    The only thing I have seen the bickering do is make people up and leave.
     
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  14. John Caldwell

    John Caldwell Well-Known Member

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    I grew up in a SBC church. Indoctrination became the driving reason I changed my major in college and continued to seminary. I grew up learning what to believe, perhaps even why to believe it. But it was in a way a "borrowed" belief. I do not mean the gospel but specific doctrines.

    For example, you could have asked me back then if I believed in the eternal security of the believer. I would have affirmed the doctrine and even been able to give you verses supporting the view. But I would not be able to interact with the doctrine outside of my sect. Don't get me wrong - I still affirm the doctrine, but now I have worked out the belief (it is mine rather than my repetition of someone else's position).

    My experience with most Calvinists are this way. Most are able to go through TULIP and back again (PILUT). But once they get to "L" stop them and ask how they justify the idea of justice they presuppose. When I do this I get a bewildered look and a lecture about "plain meaning" and "the ECF's were all Calvinists except for Origen). My point is many are just indoctrinated as I was with eternal security.

    I speak a bit tongue in cheek, but I have seriously encountered people who believe John the Baptist was the first Baptist and Justin Martyr was a Calvinist.

    And this can occur with any belief. When it does the other person can only interact in an echo chamber.

    One does not have to understand other beliefs to defend their own. But one does at least need to understand their belief and understand it within a broader Christian context in order to interact with other Christians.
     
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  15. Anthony D'Arienzo

    Anthony D'Arienzo Well-Known Member

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    Hello Forrest, I have seen many people and even churches swing over to truth. Sometimes truth causes divisions but the truth wins in the long run.
     
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  16. Anthony D'Arienzo

    Anthony D'Arienzo Well-Known Member

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    John MacArthur is one of the best teachers on earth.
    What do you find fault with his teaching?
     
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  17. Prayer Warrior

    Prayer Warrior Well-Known Member

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    Interesting thread!

    I was introduced to Calvinism when my late husband and I attended a Presbyterian church. We were actually married in the church. I was coming from an SBC background; although, I never bought into cessationism (a topic for a different thread).

    When I attended the new member class, where they taught TULIP, I was shocked to hear the idea that Christ only died for the elect (called Limited Atonement, the L in TULIP). This was very foreign to me and really upset me. I asked one of the elders how millions of people could be born, live and die without ever having a chance of being saved. All he could say was that it was God's grace that any of us is saved. This is true, but his answer didn't satisfy me at all.

    The pastor who performed my wedding was later run out of the church by diehard Calvinist elders because he wasn't Calvinist
    enough. :rolleyes: The thing I loved about this pastor is that he and I could have heated debates about theology, but part as friends.

    While I admire Calvin for his contributions to the Reformation, I think he went too far in trying to explain the dichotomy of free will and predestination. I no longer feel the need to reconcile these two Bible doctrines in a way that makes perfect sense to me. I believe that we will understand all of these things fully one day even as we are fully understood. (1 Cor 13:12), and this is good enough for me.
    .
     
  18. CharismaticLady

    CharismaticLady Well-Known Member

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    I repeat. Too much hate.
     
  19. Anthony D'Arienzo

    Anthony D'Arienzo Well-Known Member

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    You repeated what you said.
    Can you post two or three examples of what you believe is hate???
     
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  20. Episkopos

    Episkopos Well-Known Member

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    You know a person has an agenda when he overdoes condemnation of one type of error while soft pedaling or ignoring other errors. Listening to him you hear the slick salesman...seducing people away from what is actually the worst errors of all.

    When someone is popular...there is a reason for it. Why do people trust the world?
     
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