Calvinism is a Pagan Philosophy

Discussion in 'Calvinism/Arminianism Debate' started by Inspector Javert, Jun 15, 2014.

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  1. Inspector Javert

    Inspector Javert
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    Too bold a title???
    Maybe, and maybe not.

    This video purports to demonstrate that "Augustinianism" is a mere re-wording of Gnostic and Manichean paganism and that the extant Theologies of Luther and Calvin (inasmuch as they agree with them)...

    Are simply repeating ancient pagan heresies unknown to the Church until Augustine's rather novel philosophy of the 4th Century....

    Morrell makes a strong case against it here:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mhLF-llpFX0

    This is a long video...only for those who are committed to reinvestigating pre-conceptions.
     
    #1 Inspector Javert, Jun 15, 2014
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  2. Revmitchell

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    Uh ho! now you must be destroyed.
     
  3. Winman

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    You die!

    Image too large
     
    #3 Winman, Jun 15, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 16, 2014
  4. Winman

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    That video shows that almost without exception the early church fathers believed in free will, and that Augustine introduced Gnosticism and Manichean paganism into the church that remains to this very hour. In fact, it is very prevalent right here at BB.
     
  5. Earth Wind and Fire

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    LOL.....yea, forget that! :laugh:
     
  6. JamesL

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    You guys probably well know that I'm not a Calvinist, but I don't like misrepresentation. And that's exactly what this issue is. Now, granted, I didn't watch the video. But I did read the excerpts on this page:

    http://openairoutreach.wordpress.co...ine-corrupt-the-church-with-gnostic-doctrine/

    I don't know if I've ever seen anyone so misinformed on an issue.

    Free will was not, in and of itself, a "cornerstone" issue in the trouncing of Gnosticism. Free will was only one fragment of reasoning related to man's "nature", which is something totally different from what this guy thinks.

    To the early church and the Gnostics, nature meant substance, where the Protestant understands nature as construct and disposition.



    As far as I can tell, it was Tertullian, in the late second century, who first introduced the doctrine of original sin. He misinterpreted Romans 5:12 as relating to both spirit and body, thinking men are spiritually dead on account of Adam, and this sprung his warped doctrine of Traducianism. And it is from his introduction of original sin and Traducianism that Augustine reasoned his flawed notion of inability.

    This guy ought to be ashamed of himself for employing a scare tactic. And that's all this amounts to.

    And my take on this issue is not misinformed. I have studied early treatment of Gnosticism, both from today's vantage point (liberal and conservative) and from reading the Fathers and Gnostic literature. I know this issue, and this guy is flat wrong

    Nor is my take slanted. I reject Traducianism and original sin. And I believe man has a free will in his unregenerate state.

    But I also reject the notion that a man's will is exercised to believe the gospel, only to reject it
     
    #6 JamesL, Jun 15, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 15, 2014
  7. Winman

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    Here is a similar video by Winkie Pratney from waaaay back before Inspector Jarvert's. It is audio only, and very long, but very interesting.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8bjk7gKyVmo


    Yes, Tertullian was the first to suggest Original Sin, but Augustine was the first to try to prove it from scripture. It was Augustine who pulled some very famous verses out of context like Psalm 51:5 and Psalm 58:3. No one had ever argued these verses to support OS before Augustine.

    Augustine's main argument was based on a flawed Latin text that said "in whom all have sinned" in Romans 5:12 which Augustine ASSUMED was speaking of Adam. Augustine also argued that 1 Cor 15:22 teaches OS.

    The early church fathers really did not speak of Original Sin.
     
  8. JamesL

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    As you probably know, I have been fairly critical of Augustine on this board, calling him a philosopher rather than a theologian. And that is what he was - a philosopher.

    He had many influences, because he was well read. And his primary "influence" was the Fathers, not Gnostics. Then he would think. And he was a great thinker. And he did read scripture, a LOT.

    You and I would probably agree on many points concerning him and his philosophical constructs. But to say that he imported Gnosticism into Christianity is off the mark.

    He was greatly influenced by Tertullian, who fought vigorously against Gnostics.

    How could Augustine import the very thing his (possibly) greatest influence fought against? But even that is a philosophical issue. How can this be? How can that be? Those are philosophical questions (and conjecture) unless we read it straight from his own pen



    But what's in this video...well, at least in the book excerpts...is the false allegation that Augustine's view of inability came from Gnostics. It didn't

    And, as I said in my earlier post - the clown in this video appears to think he's an expert on Gnostics, Fathers, and Protestants. But he doesn't even understand that they used the word "nature" differently.

    Man, this could turn into a book an inch thick...

    When the Fathers and Gnostics mentioned "nature", they meant substance. In the first century mind, a man had two natures - spirit nature and flesh nature.

    The Gnostics and the Fathers agreed on this, and both appealed to the writings of Paul for their arguments. Paul taught it, Jesus taught it, Peter taught it - scripture teaches this very thing. The "stuff" we're made up is from two different natures, spirit and dust

    Where they disagreed is that the Gnostics believed in dualism, where the spirit world is inherently good, and the material world is inherently evil.

    Inherently - in the very fiber of its substance, from its very inception, in its very essence. And it was from this that the Gnostic version of inability sprung. If matter is inherently evil, then it would reason that man, being made of this "stuff", can't help but have sinful behavior. While he is in the body, he has inability to be righteous. He had no free will to act any way other than his ontological makeup would allow

    The were looking to be "saved" from the physical realm through Gnosis. And they could appeal to Paul because he was looking to be saved form this body of death.

    Because of their view of sin being an inherent quality of matter, there were two extremes employed - on one end, they denied every bodily need and desire. On the other extreme, they indulged. Either way would have been acceptable if their view of matter was correct.

    The Fathers argued that sin is an act of the will, not that it is an inevitable result of the material world being inherently evil.

    This is not even close to Augustine's argument on inability. He believed in corruption, not an inherent quality. And he wasn't looking to escape the physical world, he was looking to be redeemed from sin. He taught guilt, and he taught redemption through Christ.

    His argument against free will was from a totally different framework than that of Gnostics. To say that he was bringing Gnosticism into the church couldn't be further from the truth.

    Additionally, "nature" does not imply substance to the Protestant, it implies "bent" or disposition. They argue against a "sin nature", and they mean an inclination toward sin. They do not use "nature" to mean spirit or body.


    So the guy in the video is showing his ignorance by not even understanding this issue, then building his whole argument around another misunderstanding - that for the Gnostic, the issue of free will related to metaphysical substance

    Whereas Augustine and today's Reformers are arguing against free will related to corruption of the mind

    You are 100% correct.

    And that is a totally different issue, probably requiring a book an inch thick
     
  9. Squire Robertsson

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    The title poisoned the well from the get go for this thread. So, I'm closing it. Try again with a different title.
     
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