Calvinists, help a Determinist out!

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by humblethinker, May 3, 2011.

  1. humblethinker

    humblethinker
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    I have posted this as a reply in another thread and think it warrants a thread of it's own. The gravity of Hard Determinism seems very strong and I've tried to escape its logical attraction. I think I understand the Libertarian Freewill argument against it but I am befuddled as to how a Calvinist would argue against it. Would they offer scripture as a rebuttal? Would they offer reasons of Logic? Would they avoid offering a reasoned argument because they would use some of the Libertarian or Arminian arguments? Would they just not offer either and simply appeal to "God's sovereignty"?

    Here's the reply (which, after reading it, seems to repeat what I said above):
    Regarding people that claim to be Calvinist but reject hard determinism: I am really curious as to whether this person would be interested in trying to reach out to the hard determinist and help him see that hard determinism is unscriptural. If there is such a concern, then what scriptures would the Calvinist offer as proof texts that hard determinism is not scriptural? Or would you think hard determinism is compatible with Calvinism?
     
  2. glfredrick

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    The rather simple answer is that hard determinism is arrived via philosophical means which differs from the revelation of Scripture -- our SURE guide and the source of our final truth.

    We go as far in our reasoning as does Scripture -- no less, no more -- and with that, we can neither arrive at hard determinism nor can we arrive at total libertarian free will. Both are heretical positions according to the revelation of God's Word.
     
  3. JesusFan

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    Wouldn't Determinism render God as the author of sin amd evil than?
    That it would really be a strong case that God is NOT good/just/ as good/evil become relative terms if the Deity is causing directly both to happen

    Wouldn't total free will mean that God would not be absolute in his divine will getting established, so man would thus being "making God in Our own Image?"
     
  4. humblethinker

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    I would tend to agree with your first point and it seems the cognitive dissonance would only be resolvable in an extra-logical way.

    Regarding your second point, it seems that man does not have total free will. One might say that God is the only being that has optimal free will. One would propose that man has a limited free will, but a free will nonetheless within the limitations, and at least the freedom of contrary choice in relation to responding to God's offer of salvation.

    But, I digress, this is supposed to be a thread for Calvinist's to help me understand how they would reach out to help and reason with a Determinist.
     
  5. ReformedBaptist

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    I can fix it from here. Reckon the gravity of Holy Scripture weightier than your logic and you'll be good to go. :thumbsup:
     
  6. quantumfaith

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    Gravity, did someone say gravity. Equal to the universal gravitational constant times the product of the two masses divided by the square of the distance between the masses.

    :)
     
  7. convicted1

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    Uh, Yah.....what Bro. Quant said..........huh???


    How 'bout putting that into "anglish" for a country boy....you need to read my "sig" before you start 'splaining!!
     
  8. humblethinker

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    And now we're back to my OP... What scriptures would you point me to? How would a Calvinist explain them to help a Determinist see the error of his thinking. Anyone...?
     
  9. Crabtownboy

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    I feel you pose a very good question. Logically I do not see how a Calvinist can but only agree with the Determinist ... as least that is what I see from the postings of many Calvinists on this board. It is the only only logical conclusion of their argument. I do not believe their position is scriptural. The Calvinist on this board have convinced me of this.
     
  10. Earth Wind and Fire

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    OK, Gravitas then:tongue3:
     
  11. Earth Wind and Fire

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    You must be writing a term paper.
     
  12. glfredrick

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    That is not the question posed by the OP.
     
  13. glfredrick

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    This answer is precisely what I had in mind when I posted my response in post #2 in this thread.

    We, however, do NOT factor all our theology "logically," but rather within the limits presented by revealed Scripture.
     
  14. humblethinker

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    I'm not sure how to understand your statement. It seems that it is a loaded statement with the purpose of dismissing my question. Why would you say this to me? Why not ask if you suspect such? That would be a reasonable question to which I would give an honest answer.
     
  15. Van

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    There will be no scriptural support for exhaustive determinism, the "God ordains whatsoever comes to pass" position of Calvinism, and no scriptural support for "God is the author of sin" logical necessity of exhaustive determinism. Therefore both views are man-made false doctrines.

    The Arminian view is just as bogus. Here we have God knowing the future exhaustively, which has no support in scripture, yet such knowledge does not, again by logical necessity, require a fixed certain future, whereby people cannot alter the outcome of their life by choosing life rather than death. If God knows the choice, then that is the only option available which makes it a "non-choice." Not what the Bible says! Arminians get around this difficulty by appealing to time travel, when we make the choice the outcome is not fixed, but when God knows that choice from "outside time" it is fixed. Pure mumbo jumbo, in my opinion, and all of it conjecture without scriptural support.

    Well, what does the Bible actually say? God is all-knowing but what the author envisioned by the use of "all" is undefined. The idea that "all" refers to everything imaginable is demonstrated false by Peter saying Jesus knew everything, yet we know Jesus did not know the time of His return. So the "total omniscience" doctrine is based on an unsound guess as to what the author's intended. Now with this as a starting point, God's omniscience is inherent, God knows everything He has chosen to know according to His purpose, then God can know some of the future, what He has declared and predetermined, yet leave a part of the future unfixed, where His creation exercises their autonomous will. We make plans -autonomous action - but God directs our steps - God limits the range of our choices and actions. So the Bible presents the future as partially fixed and known, such as where Satan will spend eternity, and partially unfixed and unknown, such as where those conceived in iniquity will spend eternity.

    This view returns us to accepting the Bible just as it is written, with whoever believes in Him shall not perish, meaning whoever rather than a group of previously selected individuals.
     
    #15 Van, May 4, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2011
  16. mandym

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    That is your man mad logic not scripture.
     
  17. Crabtownboy

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    Somehow I do not believe you are suggesting that scripture is revealed illogically. I do believe that God is to be understood logically within scripture and not as illogically. I do not believe that the Bible as a whole is illogical. I do not believe that scripture is presented illogically. Thus, if a belief system leads to a logical conclusion I believe that conclusion is what must be admitted to and I believe Calvinism, as espoused by many here, leads to the conclusion that determinism and predestination are one and the same ... and the only conclusion that can lead to is that God is the author of all evil. I reject that belief! That, with my limited understanding, leads me to believe that God gave mankind free will. That is my stance at the moment. I am not so tied to it that I cannot change if shown I am wrong. It appears that many Calvinist are so tied to their belief system that they cannot change or to follow their beliefs to their logical conclusion.

    Also, at the moment, I believe that some of Calvin's beliefs are Gnostic and that he picked these beliefs up, not from the Bible, but from Augustine who came to believe these from his time with the Gnostics. I am researching this further.
     
  18. JesusFan

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    Wouldn't the fact that it would force you to believe that God is directly causing evil/sin to come into His creation though be a pause of concern?

    As the Bible states God cannot Sin, nor cause/draw others to Sin, but is their free will doing such?

    So IF determinism was espoused, would seem to be a clear contridiction of natur e of God as revealed in His Word?
     
    #18 JesusFan, May 4, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2011
  19. Van

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    Reply to Mandym,

    "That" must refer to some point I made.

    Calvinism asserts God ordains whatsoever comes to pass. My position is no scripture supports that assertion. That is not man-made logic, it is a statement of my view based on reading scripture. God certainly causes or allows everything that comes to pass, but allowing something to occur as a result of the autonomous actions or thoughts of His creation, does not make Him the author of sin. But if, as Calvinism does, folks say God predestines everything (ordain = predestine) that makes Him the author of sin. Now you can say "God does not predestine everything." But when you do, you depart from Calvinism.
     
  20. Earth Wind and Fire

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    Sorry I hurt your feelings....Let me rephrase. Are you writing a paper?
     

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