Calvin A Safe Spiritual Guide?

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by Ray Berrian, Feb 18, 2003.

  1. Ray Berrian

    Ray Berrian
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Messages:
    5,178
    Likes Received:
    0
    Is John Calvin a safe spiritual guide?

    Much of his teaching is warmed-over Roman Catholicism. This is from "Calvin's Institutes." 'But as it is now our purpose to discourse of the visible Church, let us learn, from her single title of Mother, how useful, nay, how necessary the knowledge of her is, since there is no other means of entering into life unless she conceive us in the womb and give us birth, unless she nourish us at her breasts, and, in short, keep us under her charge and government, until, divested of mortal flesh, we become like the angels . . . . Moreover, beyond the pale of the Church no forgiveness of sins, no salvation can be hoped for . . . . hence the abandonment of the Church is always fatal.' (John Calvin, "Method and Arrangement," in "Institutes of the Christian Religion, trans. Henry Beveridge {Wm. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1998 ed.} p. 29)

    Calvinists David Steele and Curtis Thomas point out that "The basic doctrines of the Calvinistic position had been vigorously defended by Augustine against Pelagius during the fifth century." (David N. Steele and Curtis C. Thomas, "The Five Points of Calvinism" {Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co. 1963), p. 19.

    C.H. Spurgeon admitted that 'perhaps Calvin himself derived it {Calvinism} mainly from the writings of Augustine.' (Charles Haddon Spurgeon, ed., "Exposition of the Doctrine of Grace {Pilgrim Publications, n.d.} p 298.

    Alvin L. Baker wrote, 'There is hardly a doctrine of Calvin that does not bear the marks of Augustine's influence.' (Alvin L. Baker, "Berkouwer's Doctrine of Election: Balance or Imbalance? {Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co., 1981) p. 25

    C. Gregg Singer said, 'The main features of Calvin's theology are found in the writings of St. Augustine to such an extent that many theologians regard Calvinism as a more fully developed form of Augustinianism.' (C. Gregg Singer, "John Calvin: His Roots and Fruits {A Press, 1989), VII.

    Henry H. Milman said this. 'Augustinianism was worked up into a still more rigid and uncompromising system by the severe intellect of Calvin. (Henry H. Milman, "History of Christianity" {A.C. Armstrong and Son, 1886} 3:176.

    Calvin called himself 'an Augustinian theologian.' (Kenneth G. Talbot and W. Gary Crampton, "Calvinism, Hyper-Calvinism and Arminianism" {Still Water Revival Books, 1990, p. 79.

    William P. Grady writes this. 'The deluded Augustine (354-430 A.D.) went so far as to announce {through his book, "The City of God"} that Rome had been privileged to usher in the millennial kingdom (otherswise known as the Dark Ages). (William P. Grady, "Final Authority: A Christian's Guide to the King James Bible {Grady Publications, 1993), p.54.

    Calvin is 'joined at the hip' to St. Augustine the notible Roman Catholic theologian. People need to study and investigate the Greek when difficult passages appear, rather than the Latin that they focused on during their life time. This is why many believe that Augustinianism and much later Calvinism has passed all the 'Check Points' of the Holy See, through the centuries.
     
  2. sturgman

    sturgman
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2003
    Messages:
    310
    Likes Received:
    0
    I am sick of people who assume because people refer to us as calvinist, we must follow every teaching of John Calvin. That is just stupid. Those who call themselves Arminian hardly follow all the teachings of Arminius. So when I refer to my self as a calvinist, let me clarify what I am saying. I am saying that I believe in the doctrines of grace.

    Thanks.
     
  3. npetreley

    npetreley
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2002
    Messages:
    7,359
    Likes Received:
    0
    It is not wise to wage a quote war. Google works just as well for the other side, you know. Using the same tactics, let's see how well Arminianism does...

    Satan may use means, sometimes he works immediate; at times he works in public, at other times in secret; at times he uses theologians, at other times those who teach philosophy. ... It makes no difference to the devil whether he plants weeds with the right hand or with the left, as long as he achieves his end. That is how before this he made long-condemned Pelagianism re-appear. - Abraham van de Velde (1614-1677)

    Warnings from the pulpit and denunciation of the errors of Arminianism are not now heard as once they were. Even in pulpits where the truth is preached, it is to be feared that, in some cases, a faithful witness is not raised against Arminianism. The cause of this may be due in a measure to the fact that in defending the cause of truth new forms of error have to be exposed and assailed, with the result that the old enemy is left so far unmolested as if it were dead. Unfortunately this is not so; Arminianism is very much alive in the pulpit, in the theological and religious press, and in the modem evangelistic meeting . . . . . When we bear in mind the horror with which our forefathers regarded Arminianism, the modern attitude to it indicates how far the professing Church has drifted from the position of the theologians of those days." - The Reformed Faith I by the Rev. D. Beaton, p. 18

    Arminianism is armed to the teeth in enmity to true and vital godliness. Where it flourishes its fruits are a superficial goody-goody form of godliness -- the lamp and the light of the foolish virgins which went out in death and in despair. The Declaratory Acts of 1879, 1892 and 1921 in Scotland, and in 1901 in the Presbyterian Church of New Zealand threw open the flood-gates to the deluge of Arminianism. Spiritual death and desolation followed. The fat land was turned into barrenness, and the Churches adopting these Declaratory Acts are now well on the road to Rome. The 'sovereign drug' of Arminianism has flourished beyond the wildest dreams of priests and Jesuits. It is not by open and unabashed passing of nefarious Declaratory Acts that Satan as an angel of light now works. Subtle infiltration is his present policy and technique. What need there is for the 'denunciation' and the 'horror' the Rev. D. Beaton refers to, as the cloven-hoof of Arminianism is unmistakably seen far within the tents of the popular evangelical conventions, fellowships, and unions of our day! The Scripture Union, the Inter-Varsity Fellowship, the International Council of Christian Churches, the conventions of the Keswick fraternity etc., are all riddled with the cancer of Arminianism. - Rev. William MacLean, M.A.

    God will not build anything on any foundation of man, on any other foundation than that which has the seal of His everlasting election. He will not! God does not build the church on an Arminian foundation. ... The Arminian is not working at the foundation of God. He is not. Those who in any sense of the word -- I do not hesitate to say it -- build on the foundation of man, on the foundation of Arminian grace or any other common grace, do not build on the foundation of the church. - Herman Hoeksema, "The Sure Foundation of God"

    "The Sovereignty of God is the stumbling block on which thousands fall and perish; and if we go contending with God about His sovereignty it will be our eternal ruin. It is absolutely necessary that we should submit to God as an absolute sovereign, and the sovereign of our souls; as one who may have mercy on whom He will have mercy and harden whom He will" - Jonathan Edwards

    "Many of you say you have faith in Christ. Can you tell us anything about Him in whom you say you believe? Were your souls ever ready to sink into hell? Did they ever stick fast in the miry clay of corruption? Locked up in the prison of unbelief? Icebound by impenitence? Laid lower than the beasts with lusts? Tormented as beset by devils? Did any one come to rescue you in that state? Who is He? Is He a Saviour? Mary saw the Lord; she could tell something about it. And so the two disciples going to Emmaus. Can you this day condescend upon a single incident, even to the extent of the twinkling of an eye? Any condition of body or soul in which you saw the Lord by faith? Can you tell what passed between Him and you?" - Rev. Jonathan R. Anderson, Glasgow. Died 1859

    There's plenty more if you still want to play.
     
  4. Yelsew

    Yelsew
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    What is grace?
     
  5. npetreley

    npetreley
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2002
    Messages:
    7,359
    Likes Received:
    0
    Main Entry: 1grace
    Pronunciation: 'grAs
    Function: noun
    Etymology: Middle English, from Old French, from Latin gratia favor, charm, thanks, from gratus pleasing, grateful; akin to Sanskrit grnAti he praises
    Date: 12th century
    1 a : unmerited divine assistance given humans for their regeneration or sanctification b : a virtue coming from God c : a state of sanctification enjoyed through divine grace
    2 a : APPROVAL, FAVOR <stayed in his good graces> b archaic : MERCY, PARDON c : a special favor : PRIVILEGE <each in his place, by right, not grace, shall rule his heritage -- Rudyard Kipling> d : disposition to or an act or instance of kindness, courtesy, or clemency e : a temporary exemption : REPRIEVE
    3 a : a charming or attractive trait or characteristic b : a pleasingly graceful appearance or effect : CHARM c : ease and suppleness of movement or bearing
    4 -- used as a title of address or reference for a duke, a duchess, or an archbishop
    5 : a short prayer at a meal asking a blessing or giving thanks
    6 plural, capitalized : three sister goddesses in Greek mythology who are the givers of charm and beauty
    7 : a musical trill, turn, or appoggiatura
    8 a : sense of propriety or right <had the grace not to run for elective office -- Calvin Trillin> b : the quality or state of being considerate or thoughtful

    There's plenty there from which to choose. I'd start by eliminating "appoggiatura".
     
  6. rufus

    rufus
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2003
    Messages:
    730
    Likes Received:
    0
    I suggest we follow Augustine and Calvin, Arminius and Wesley when they follow God's Holy Revelation and refuse to follow them when they don't follow God's Word!!

    It is logically fallacious to dismiss someone's studied belief because you don't like the source of his beliefs or because you don't like the associations he belongs to.

    rufus [​IMG]
     
  7. Ray Berrian

    Ray Berrian
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Messages:
    5,178
    Likes Received:
    0
    Laurence M. Vance, "The Other Side of Calvinism (Vance Publications, Pensacola FL, rev. ed. 1999), p. 139. Quote: 'Howbeit, to prove conclusively that Calvin was a disciple of Augustine, we need look no further than Calvin himself. One can't read five pages in Calvin's "Institutes" without seeing the name of Augustine. Calvin quotes Augustine over four hundred times in the Institutes alone. He called Augustine by such titles as "holy man" and "holy father."


    'Upon points of doctrine he borrows from St. Augustine with both hands.' Francois Wendel, "Calvin: Origins and Development of His Religious Thought (Baker Books, 1997, p. 124.

    This is probably the best one. Dr. R.C. Sproul, the renowned Calvinist wrote, ' . . . virtually nothing in John Calvin's view of predestination . . . . was not first in Martin Luther, and before Luther in Augustine.' (R.C. Sproul, "Grace Unknown" {Baker Books, 1997}, p. 189.

    'The eye-opening book, "The Other Side of Calvinism, Laurence M. Vance thoroughly documents that "John Calvin did not originate the doctrines that bear his name. This is stated emphatically by Calvinists . . . . pg.37.

    For example, Kenneth G. Talbot and W. Gary Crampton write, "The system of doctrine which bears the name of John Calvin was in no way originated by him . . . . (Calvinism, Hyper-Calvinism and Arminianism {Still Water Revival Books, 1990} p. 78.

    B.B. Warfield declared, 'The system of doctrine taught by Calvin is just the Augustinianism common to the whole body of the Reformers.' (Benjamin B. Warfield, "Calvin and Augustine", ed. Samuel G. Craig {Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co., 1956}, p. 22.

    Truth springs eternal! Facts are facts. Documentation is verification especially from those carefully 'chosen' words of Calvinists themselves.
     
  8. romanbear

    romanbear
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2002
    Messages:
    530
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hi sturgman; [​IMG]
    a quote from you;
    --------------------------------------------
    I am sick of people who assume because people refer to us as calvinist, we must follow every teaching of John Calvin. That is just stupid. Those who call themselves Arminian hardly follow all the teachings of Arminius. So when I refer to my self as a calvinist, let me clarify what I am saying. I am saying that I believe in the doctrines of grace.
    ---------------------------------------------
    I don't like lables either although I've told you and others that I'm not an Arminian, I'm still called an Arminian.I wonder is it because Arminian and my self share simular beliefs.
    Romanbear [​IMG]
     
  9. Bible-belted

    Bible-belted
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2002
    Messages:
    1,110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ray,

    You can't seriously expect a self published source to be considered credible?
     
  10. npetreley

    npetreley
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2002
    Messages:
    7,359
    Likes Received:
    0
    I've taken it for granted so far that Luther studied Augustine and agreed with him on most points regarding predestination/free will. I've also stated that Sproul considers Calvin little more than a footnote to Luther.

    Should we expect a point at the end of all this? Or are you expecting us to gasp in horror at the brand new revelation that Augustine was Catholic and therefore dismiss the role Luther played and toss out all the scriptural support and abandon the doctrine of election in favor of free will?
     
  11. sturgman

    sturgman
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2003
    Messages:
    310
    Likes Received:
    0
    Then Romanbear, consider the old proverb, "If the shoe fits wear it."
     
  12. Ray Berrian

    Ray Berrian
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Messages:
    5,178
    Likes Received:
    0
    Rufus,

    Good point on your post dated Feb. 18 9:53 a.m.
     
  13. Ray Berrian

    Ray Berrian
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Messages:
    5,178
    Likes Received:
    0
    Bible-belted,

    There are a few men like B.B. Warfield, Sproul and Piper who still tell the truth about Calvinism coming from the Vulgate version and from the blessed hands of St. Augustine. This is to their credit.

    Some scholars still try to get to the truth even if it hurts. In this way we can at least trust that they tried to give us something close to the truth. I am sure that the three men above have their bias toward the Five Points of Calvinism, but at least they are with the rest of Christians who believe in the Divinity of Christ and the atonement that cleanses sinners from their defilement. Praise the Lord for this!
     
  14. romanbear

    romanbear
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2002
    Messages:
    530
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hi Ray; [​IMG]
    In Answer to your question as the head line of your post "Is John Calvin a safe spiritual Guide?"
    Let me put it this way. I would not leave my children in the hands of Charles Manson or Jeffery Dahlmer (" Not sure of spelling') even if they were Christian.Calvin was a Thief And a murderer.I combine both sins because a Murderer is a thief in that he will steal your life.
    Romanbear [​IMG]
     
  15. Bible-belted

    Bible-belted
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2002
    Messages:
    1,110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ray,

    Of course Calvanism is Augustnian. Just like Arminianism is Pelagian. If you want to complain that Calvanism is historic orthodoxy, by all means continue. It only highlights that Arminianism is historically heretical.

    Besides, you havbe not answered the question. You can't eally expect anyone to take a self-published crank ( or a self proclaimed ThD) seriously.
     
  16. Ray Berrian

    Ray Berrian
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Messages:
    5,178
    Likes Received:
    0
    You are wrong again. Look up real definitions of Pelagian. Arminianism is more like semi-Pelagianism. We view the fact that God calls for a human response to the offer of salvation. God calls this John 3:16.

    You must be an upset man. I am not used to people questioning my veracity. Should we question whether or not you are a Canadian? I don't see any reason for you to lie to us about where you live.

    Anyway, your brother in Christ,

    Ray
     
  17. Bible-belted

    Bible-belted
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2002
    Messages:
    1,110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ray,

    If only you would be consistent in the way you split hairs.

    The fact that Arminianism is not completely Pelagian is irrelevant. After all, in your thinking, the fact that Calvanists don't hold to all of Augustine's theology does not prevent them from being Roman Catholic, right?

    So why should the fact that you a don't hold to all of Pelagius' errors mean anything? I'm just using your logic here.

    Besides your argument is also incoherent in that you forget that Pelagius himself drew from Augustine (not to mention Ambrosiaster, and Origen). Guess that makes him,and your theology (as Arminius clearly drew on Pelagius) Roman Catholic too. (Given that RC soeriology is synergist much ike Pelagianism... uh, Arminianism, it has more in common with RC soteriology than does Calvanism.)

    But I would dispute that Arminianism really is all the "semi" in its pelagianism. After all, pelagianism is not all that uniform. I am sure that in one vatiation or another you are fully Pelagian. You play down the effects of the Fall so much that I fail to see a valid distinction. That is but the most obvious issue.

    I am not an upset person at all. (you should spend more time trying to answer questions than psychoanalyse.) The questioning of the validity of your alleged ThD is due to the way you use it and fail to use it. You use it usually to try to intimidate people. You fail to use it in that you don't use any scholarly sources or methods in researching or representing the sources you do use.

    To clarify I don't question that you hold a ThD. I simply question the credibility of it. Considering the arguments you accept it seems impossible that it is from an accredited reputable institution.

    You stil have not answered the question regarding the source you use. I know that it is very much your modus operandi to ignore questions and try to get them to chase rabbits, but it doesn't work with me. You also fail to deal with the fact that Augustinianism is unquestionably historic christian orthodoxy. If you differ from it you differ from historic orthodoxy. That is something, given the impliccations of yor logic, that you need to deal with and not run from.

    I suppsoe it would be importune of me to point out tha Arminiansism has been the root theology for such errors as denials of the full deity of the Son, Openness Theology and Open Theism, and denial of penal subsitutionary atonement.

    You align yourself with very dangerous beliefs.
     
  18. JGrayhound

    JGrayhound
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2003
    Messages:
    319
    Likes Received:
    0
    First of all, this is a ridiculous argument. If all you can do is resort to 'ad hominem' arguments, you simply embarass yourself. Those are not legit arguments.

    Second, Calvin would claim his theology is based on Scripture not on a man.

    Of course he and every other theologian (and Christian, for that matter) has been influenced by Augustine. Augustine is a towering figure in theology.

    Third, Augustine is not 'Roman-Catholic'. It would be more fair to say he was a 'catholic' theologian. Conisdering the church was not called the 'Roman Catholic church' at that time, this is well before Trent. His theology was so broad that 'RC' rejects some of his views, as does protestantism.

    None of us can escape the shadow of Augustine. Sorry, but to use this as any way to refute Calvinism is just a weak attempt to avoid going to the Scripture.
     
  19. Ray Berrian

    Ray Berrian
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Messages:
    5,178
    Likes Received:
    0
    Augustinian theology is not orthodox Chrstian theology. The teachings of the Apostles of Christ and the Savior have expressed orthodox theology. It is found between Genesis and Revelation. Already by the time Augustine entered the scene the apostasy was already in full swing. Each ex cathedra from the Papal chair took people further away from the real truth embodied in the Bible, the Word of God.
     
  20. JGrayhound

    JGrayhound
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2003
    Messages:
    319
    Likes Received:
    0
    Agreed.

    But the fact that this whole ad hominem attack is ridiculous remains.

    Augustine was not "Roman Catholic" as you claim.

    Calvin (although influenced by Augustine - as well as Luther and many others) based his theology on that of Scripture. Calvin was a masterful exegete, something that gets overlooked by people who don't look at Calvin closely.

    This is a horrible argument....I think this thread should be locked.
     

Share This Page

Loading...