Detriment or Benefit?

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by Pastor_Bob, Jun 25, 2003.

  1. Pastor_Bob

    Pastor_Bob
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Messages:
    3,461
    Likes Received:
    45
    Let me preface this thread by saying that I secured the permission of the Moderators of this Forum before beginning a potentially capricious thread. They agreed, on the stipulation that the discussion remained on topic and addressed the issue rather than the specific points of the issues on the periphery. That being said, be conscious of the fact that the Moderators will keep a close eye on this topic that has the capability to get out of hand in short order. Please give your thoughts on the topic without attacking anyone personally.

    I believe that one of, if not the most damaging things in the life of a church is false doctrine. For example, if a church taught baptismal regeneration, many of the members of that church would be falsely dependant upon their baptism as their means of salvation. If a church taught a works-based salvation, then people would rely on their works instead of the grace of God.

    Two doctrines or philosophies that are often discussed at length on the Baptist Board are Calvinism and King James Version Onlyism . If you deem one or both of these to be false doctrine, how, in your opinion, do they cause damage to the church? If you deem one or both of these to be biblical doctrine, how, in your opinion, do they benefit the church?

    My personal view is that Calvinism is a false doctrine that greatly damages the church. The tenet of “irresistible grace” is especially harmful IMO, in that it does not cause one to seek God. The tenet of “total depravity” is dangerous because one is led to believe that he/she can do nothing for themselves in their search for God. These are but two of the reasons I find this false doctrine detrimental to the church.

    KJV Onlyism, on the other hand, I do not consider as false doctrine. I consider it a philosophy that may or may not have a detrimental affect on the church. I have not witnessed any adverse affects personally. Although I do not agree with KJVOnlyism, I do not place it in the same category as Calvinism.
     
  2. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2000
    Messages:
    29,402
    Likes Received:
    12
    Happy to have a discussion on the Theological implications of these two oft-debated doctrines. I would come down hard on the opposite side, brother.

    (1) Issue of Grace:
    Calvinism is a blessing to the church, in that we can trust a sovereign God to do right. My responsibility (to preach the Gospel to every creation) is not abbrogated, nor can I sit back in utter contempt-ment and do nothing. But know that God's will WILL be done and cannot be thwarted.

    Arminian thought debilitates the church, adding works to grace and promising salvation by easy believism and 1-2-3-pray-after-me. And if I don't continue to work, then zap - I'm on my way back to hell again. Capricious, pathetic God, subservient to the will of man. Who then is truly sovereign?

    (2) Issue of Inspiration
    Historic baptist and fundamentalism believed the Word of God was inspired in the original documents. Then any translation that was faithful to those documents were "derived" inspired.

    In the era of the 1970's a new voice was promoted which has divided baptist fundamentalism over proclamation that the AV1611 was the ONLY Word of God. This was augmented by an attack on any other translation as a "perversion". I cannot imagine Satan any more gleeful than a preacher saying, "Unless you were saved reading a KJV, you are not truly saved." (Jack Hyles, guru of these pseudo-fundamentalists)

    Taking the Word of God out of the hands of people of forcing them to try to understand Jacobean English in order to be saved is an evil attack on the historic doctrine of inspiration.

    Others?
     
  3. LadyEagle

    LadyEagle
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b> <img src =/israel.gif>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2002
    Messages:
    22,028
    Likes Received:
    1
    Dr. Bob, would you not agree that both sides of the debate use Scripture to back up their view? Would you not agree that both originated with men of God? Calvin on the one hand, Armenia (??) on the other ?? (LOL at myself for not knowing [​IMG] )

    So why couldn't the truth be somewhere in the middle? Which is where I tend to be, not knowing all the fine points on each side.

    OK, if you don't want me to join in this thread, all you have to do is tell me goodbye. But please don't throw tomatoes! [​IMG] [​IMG] :eek:
     
  4. Grasshopper

    Grasshopper
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2002
    Messages:
    3,348
    Likes Received:
    14
    The Doctrines of Grace are the most liberating Doctrines in the Bible. To think that God and Jesus worked out our salvation before the foundation of the Earth, and nothing can take that away is an incredible and humbling thing. Nothing we do, including our repentence, comes from us unless God moves in us first. To think that we have to "work" so God can accomplish His will is Hogwash. God's Will will be done, He just uses mankind to accomplish it.
     
  5. aefting

    aefting
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2002
    Messages:
    874
    Likes Received:
    0
    I am neither a full Calvinist nor a KJV-only. So, I believe that both are false doctrines to some degree.

    Calvinism

    I don’t think this doctrine has to damage the church a great deal, although there is the potential with hyper-Calvinism (basically, no universal plea for salvation) for great damage to occur. My contention with Calvinism deals with limited atonement. If you can’t say to an unbeliever, “Christ died for you,” then I think you have at least a minor problem. I know there are other ways of approaching the sinner but in my book it’s not optimal. In general, though, I don’t consider Calvinism to be a great blight. There are many fine Calvinist and Calvinistic churches.

    KJV-only

    The biggest problem with this error occurs when its adherents become schismatic. I really don’t have a problem with anyone’s conviction for the KJV or TR. They have served the church well for hundreds of years and are “practically” no different from modern versions. Having said that, the other problem with KJV-onlyism occurs when adherents intimidate a pastor or teacher from explaining textual variants or alternate translations. Sometimes to get the right understanding of the passage you have to depart from the KJV or the TR. If I can do that (and I teach at a church that uses the KJV as its official Bible – but it’s not KJV-only), and folks are not schismatic, then there is no real damage that occurs.


    Andy
     
  6. npetreley

    npetreley
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2002
    Messages:
    7,359
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well done. Not much I can add to that.
     
  7. Sola-Scriptura

    Sola-Scriptura
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2003
    Messages:
    80
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have to say with Spurgeon that Calvinism is only a nickname for the gospel.(a nickname I have preferred to stop using because it is associated with a fallible man) The docrines of grace are not something that was systemetized and then forced on scripture as many believe. The doctrines of grace are merely the truths of the gospel that shatter our sinful, selfish pride. Dare we think salvation is a part of some supernatural democracy where God is trying without much success to sell himself like a commodity to almighty man who has the power to "tie His hands"? Did God "take a chance" and send His son to die, hoping that some would believe in Him, but knew a possibility existed that NOT ONE might "choose" to believe in Christ? I agree with Dr. Bob Griffin that "Calvinism" is a blessing to the Church, yes but much more... without those doctrines, the Lord Jesus would never have called all of us, like Lazarus, from our graves of sin and death to eternal life. We don't come forth on our own! The tenet of “total depravity” is dangerous because one is led to believe that he/she can do nothing for themselves in their search for God.


    But this is exactly the truth. We can do nothing for ourselves until He grants us repentance and belief of the truth.It appears to us that we repent and believe the gospel and then God shows up to help us, when really and scripturally He began much, much earlier. We love Him because He first loved us.(1John 4:19)
    " For by grace are you saved through faith AND THAT NOT OF YOURSELVES it is the gift of God not of works lest any man should boast." Eph. 2:8-9
     
  8. Artimaeus

    Artimaeus
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2002
    Messages:
    3,133
    Likes Received:
    0
    I will leave the implications of these two doctrines/ideas for the WHOLE church to others and will restrict my comments to their effect on MY church. Calvinism has had ZERO effect. 95% of our folks don't know or CARE what Calvin or any of his supporters thought or think. We study each individual aspect to see what the Bible says and we go with that. It makes no difference if someone else thinks it is illogical or not.

    Total Depravity - Yes
    Unconditional Election - No
    Limited Atonement - No
    Irresistable Grace - No
    Perserverance of the Saint - Yes

    The only tulips we care about are in the garden. [​IMG]

    KJVO reared its ugly head about 30 years ago and almost split the church. Thankfully, wiser heads prevailed and we settled on one of the principles that the church was founded on and that is that the Bible is inspired in the original languages. 90%-95% are still KJV-Preferred but a study of what the original says settles any concerns.
     
  9. Pastor_Bob

    Pastor_Bob
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Messages:
    3,461
    Likes Received:
    45
    I agree 100% with this statement. But when you add to the doctrine of grace it becomes false doctrine which causes serious damage to the church.

    To contrast the two areas under discussion, Calvinism and KJVOism, let's assume for a moment that both are false. Which one carries the greater damnation? I would have to say Calvinism. It has eternal ramifications whereas KJVOism is little more than opinion. It if it wrong, only those who hold to the view have limited themselves in their availability to God's Word.

    If one would espouse the tenets of Calvinism, it may very well jeopardize their own salvation and the salvation of those they love.

    I am not questioning anyone's salvation but rather the potential danger in a false doctrine.
     
  10. Hardsheller

    Hardsheller
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2002
    Messages:
    3,816
    Likes Received:
    0
    Pastor_Bob,

    Would you care to elaborate on your statement which said. - "If one would espouse the tenets of Calvinism, it may very well jeopardize their own salvation and the salvation of those they love."

    Thank you.
     
  11. RomOne16

    RomOne16
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2002
    Messages:
    459
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  12. TomVols

    TomVols
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2000
    Messages:
    11,170
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think Martyn Lloyd Jones' discussion of this in his What is an Evangelical? (Banner of Truth) is quite helpful. Anytime anyone elevates a non-essential to the place of the essential, they have just damaged the church. I believe far more KJVOs do this than Calvinists, though too many Calvinists flirt with this. As a Calvinist myself, I do not believe it a necessity for someone to be a calvinist to be a believer or true preacher of the gospel (it would certainly help, though). I have less than full Calvinistic brethren who faithfully preach the gospel in a way that any Calvinist should rejoice.

    And besides, all Baptists are calvinistic in one sense or another, or we wouldn't be true baptists.

    So it can live or die by degrees.

    Anyway, having been formerly a KJVO and now a Calvinist, I can say without hesitation that KJVO is the more dangerous of the two and is the only one that qualifies as a false doctrine.
    ----------

    Speaking as a moderator, we should limit our discussion to which of the two we see as more damaging. However, if we try to go into indepth discussion of why, we're going to be in land better suited (gulp) for BVT or C v. A.
     
  13. Jim1999

    Jim1999
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/Jim1999.jpg>

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2002
    Messages:
    15,460
    Likes Received:
    0
    The dangers, as I see them, is when we fail to divide the human approach to Calvinism and the divine approach. One view from heaven's side, and the other from earth's; human responsibility and the divine prerogative.

    Again, Spurgeon demonstrated so well: "We enter heaven's gate and read on the great gate: 'All who will may come', from inside the gate we look back and read upon the same arch, 'Elect from before the fondation of the earth'. There is no dangers to the church from Calvinism so long as we keep the gospel (our responsibility) in proper perspective. We are commissioned to Preach the word..preach the gospel and in our minds, that should include all who may......we just don't who they are, do we?

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  14. Pastor_Bob

    Pastor_Bob
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2002
    Messages:
    3,461
    Likes Received:
    45
    I would be glad to explain what I mean by the above statement. First, let me explain what I do not mean. That may help in understanding what I do mean.

    I do not mean that those who hold to the tenets of Calvinism are not saved. I do not believe that; I think there are many Christians who are Calvinists.

    The point that I am trying to make is, if one, prior to salvation, believes in "irresistible grace," they may never have a concern about their salvation because salvation, in their opinion, is inevitable. They will be saved whether they want to be or not because they are one of the "elect."

    This would trickle down in their efforts to lead their children to the Lord. The attitude is, "If my children are one of the elect, they will get saved; if they are not, they won't." Unless they believe in covenant theology which is a tremendously dangerous false doctrine IMO.

    Each of the 5 points of Calvinism are similarly dangerous, with the possible exception of "perseverance of the saints."
     
  15. aefting

    aefting
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2002
    Messages:
    874
    Likes Received:
    0
    The same could be said of almost any doctrine. Justification by Faith Alone is "dangerous" because some might say, "shall we continue in sin that grace my abound?" There is always the danger of going further than the Bible does with a particular doctrine. Let's face it, it's hard to stay on the edge of the theological knife blade that is sound doctrine.

    Andy
     
  16. russell55

    russell55
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2002
    Messages:
    2,424
    Likes Received:
    0
    If anyone believes that irresistible grace means that they will be saved whether they want to be or not because they are one of the elect, then they have either been mistaught or have misconstrued what they have been taught.

    And any doctine will at times be mistaught or misconstrued to the detriment of those who are learning or understanding it wrongly. But that bad result can hardly be blamed on the doctrine itself.
     
  17. RaptureReady

    RaptureReady
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2002
    Messages:
    1,492
    Likes Received:
    0
    Calvinism - I don't agree with. John 3:16 still says "whosoever."

    KJVOism - I believe the King James Bible is the perfect, infallible, inerrant word of God. MV's may contain the word of God, but the King James will always be my final authority.
     
  18. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    May 4, 2001
    Messages:
    21,763
    Likes Received:
    0
    Calvinism believes this. It is a cornerstone of our belief.

    Not if you continue to be KJVO. Since the KJV doesn't teach KJVO, but rather teaches that things different than the KJV can be properly called the word of God, a KJVO does not hold the KJV as the final authority but rather holds the opinions of man as the final authority.

    The biggest detriment is KJVO since it elevates the ideas of man to the level of authoritative doctrine. Any time man adds to the word of God, he has hurt other people spiritually.

    Calvinism is a benefit to the church becuase it is the only reason that evangelism is effective. Those who deny Calvinism but preach the gospel live under the umbrella of the doctrine they so despise. The preaching of an arminian is only effective for the salvation of souls because of the doctrines that he hates. Bob Griffin has a good quote on this from Packer I believe. Perhaps he will give it for us here. I can't remember it exactly. Calvinism can be distorted and evangelism go unpracticed. But remember that is not calvinism; that is a distortion. Do not confuse the two.
     
  19. swaimj

    swaimj
    Expand Collapse
    <img src=/swaimj.gif>

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2000
    Messages:
    3,426
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think that both Calvinism and KJVOnlyism are detrimental to the church.

    Calvinism Paul said in Philippians 2:12b-13 "Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling for it is God who works in you both to will and to work for his good pleasure". This verse puts proper balance upon human responsibility and God's sovereignty. IMHO, Calvinists do not strike this balance in their theology because they over-emphasize God's sovereignty. I do not consider Calvinists heretics and I find that I can often work with them. However, I find that the lack of theological balance can, and often does lead to other problems.

    KJVOnlyism I have heard missionaries speak of tribes who hear the gospel for the first time and are troubled by the message for a particular reason. "If the gospel is true" they ask, "how could God have allowed our ancestors for centuries not to hear it and to die and go to hell? How could he have allowed us to remain in darkness for so long?"

    Sometimes I can almost hear KJVOnlyists asking a similar question. "How can you say that you have found manuscripts which correct the KJV and change what it says? How could God have allowed us to be wrong for centuries?"

    Ultimately, the gospel is rooted in historical events (Jesus' life, death, and resurrection) and the transmission of those events to us in written form (the Bible). For reasons known only to God, he has allowed some Christians through the centuries to have the scriptures in incomplete forms, some in incorrect forms, some in restricted forms, and some have not had the scriptures at all. I think that KJVOnlyism thinks that it is immune to these processes that God has used in history. It is the result of people saying "there is no way that the Bible I have could be wrong because there is no way God would allow me to believe something that is not true and there is no way that he would allow me to be without it." If that is the case, it certainly makes us unique in the history of Christianity.

    KJVOnlyism does not understand the historical process of how we got our Bible. It is wrong because it assumes it could never be wrong and is immune to all evidence. These attitudes are very harmful to any church that holds them.
     
  20. TomVols

    TomVols
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2000
    Messages:
    11,170
    Likes Received:
    0
    What Pastor Bob and Hardsheller seem to be relying on are caricatures of Calvinsm rather than the characteristics of Calvinism. I believe detailed study of the doctrine will clear up the obvious misconceptions you have erroneously garnered.
     

Share This Page

Loading...