Is The Way of the Master Calvinist?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by evangelist6589, Feb 25, 2014.

  1. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
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    OOps I forgot to post this in the CAL/Armin debate. My error.

    WOTM is far from perfect. But it does have a heavy emphasis on Lordship salvation and a heavy condemnation of the sinners prayer and "easy-believism" which are definitely Calvinist based arguments. What Arminians believe in Lordship or false converts? Also it has a huge emphasis on God's wrath, judgment, his Holiness, and repentance. WOTM does not say that the sinner repents on his own without Gods Holy Spirit. Also Jesus was Law to the Proud and Grace to the humble (Luke 10:25-26; 18:18-20; John 3:1-17).

    Also check out these verses

    Psa 19 (KJV) The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. 8 The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.

    Gal 3:24 (KJV) Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.

    NIV & ESV both say Guardian in this verse, however I prefer school-master.

    The Law convicted Paul of sin (Rm 7:7, NIV) What shall we say, then? Is the law sinful? Certainly not! Nevertheless, I would not have known what sin was had it not been for the law. For I would not have known what coveting really was if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.”[a]

    Regarding Comfort and Calvinism I am not sure if he is one as he takes no position. Some think he is and others do not (http://examiningcalvinism.blogspot.com/2010/10/ray-comfort-on-conversion.html).

    WOTM also places a huge emphasis on open air preaching and its not like that method gets many if any decisions. Ray himself used to be a modern evangelical preacher until he discovered the LAW and writes himself in a book that his decisions drastically dropped. It dropped because people do not want to hear about God's law and judgment, they only want to hear a Joel Osteen type gospel message which is not the gospel. Ray, myself, and many others continue to open air preach because we trust that God will bring forth his elect to salvation. JI Packer wrote a great book on the doctrine of election.

    Regardless I also do not believe WOTM is the only way to evangelize, but I beleve it is the best way. WOTM principles can be used not only on the streets but also at work, at school, the grocery store, the doctors office, the post office, and with family and friends.


    John
     
    #1 evangelist6589, Feb 25, 2014
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  2. convicted1

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    Brother John, I wouldn't consider anyone a calvinist/calvinistic based solely upon them being pro-LS or anti-easy believism. I was exactly that even before changing my beliefs.
     
  3. JamesL

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    John,
    I don't get something. You said in the beginning of your post that Way of the Master is far from perfect, then in the last part you said it is the best way to evangelize.

    ????

    How can a far-from-perfect method be the best method ?
     
  4. JohnDeereFan

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    To be honest, I much prefer Wretched, which is ironic, since I remember having a conversation with Todd just before they announced it and practically begging him not to go.

    Turns out, it's much better because they've expanded their mission from just evangelism to a mix of evangelism and teaching.
     
  5. JonC

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    Hey John,

    There are several misconceptions in your post. First, as convicted1 points out, you have made a false connection by implying that Arminians believe in “easy believism” (if I am taking your comment “What Arminians believe in Lordship or false converts?” correctly – if not, then I apologize in advance). Second, non-Calvinists to include Arminians do not believe that sinners repent without God’s Holy Spirit. Third, you may want to reexamine Galatians 3:24 within the entire context of the chapter. I am not exactly sure of your application, so I will simply suggest that you read the entire chapter as if that verse was not stand-alone doctrine.

    Insofar as the WOTM, I believe that it is a good method of evangelism. Personally, I do not find it “the best,” partly because I do not believe that there is a “best” method or tool for evangelism and partly because some have taken it to mean that one must put the lost under the OT Law as their schoolmaster in order to proceed to the gospel. I believe that the best way to evangelism is to relate to people and communicate the gospel message. People may use various tools and crutches, but sometimes these methods become obstacles. If, for example, the individual to whom you are speaking never comes to accept the Law – then you are done. It is best to understand the gospel and then genuinely relate the gospel to others. I am not aware of any method that ignores the necessity of explaining our sinfulness.

    In an attempt to answer your question, I do not see anything in WOTM that would make it exclusive to Calvinism.
     
  6. JonC

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    What is Wretched?
     
  7. JohnDeereFan

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    "...and now, with every head bowed and every eye closed, just repeat this prayer after me" ring a bell?

    I see. So, without first explaining the law to them, why do they need the Gospel?

    Correct. Sinners will not repent if they don't first know what they're repenting for.

    It's a radio show.
     
  8. JonC

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    That would be “easy believism.” But no, it doesn’t “ring a bell.” I have been to a couple of churches in the past (a long time ago) who used the “sinners prayer,” but the stereotypical way that you present it here is actually foreign to my experience with these churches understanding and use. My point was not that “easy believism” does not exist but that it is not a characteristic of non-Calvinistic churches. Certainly if a church presents a “prayer” say in order to effect salvation….well, it is not Christian. I have Presbyterian friends who have an “easier believism” in the form of a hyper view of covenant theology. They are Calvinists, but I don’t think that their position is descriptive of Calvinism. My objection was not concerning the “sinners prayer” but the implication that Arminianism or even other non-Calvinistic beliefs imply an “easy believism.” Easy believism is a dangerous practice which seems to reject repentance and true belief.

    In order to understand the gospel message, one must first understand his or her own sinful and lost situation. I do not think it reasonable to tell someone that the Savior is here if they do not recognize the need for a Savior – it would not be relevant in their minds. The first step is to explain man’s sinfulness – why they need the Gospel. I think that the Law may be a good place to start. Sin is another good place – that we “miss the mark” and are under just condemnation. Depending on the ideology of the person, the idea of a Perfect and Just God contrasted with human imperfection (moral imperfection and unrighteousness) may be yet another starting point. But understanding man, our sin and rebellion against God, is essential to the gospel message.

    Do you mean here that sinners are to repent of their individual sins in order to be saved, or do you have something more inclusive in mind (for example, sinners repenting of their own righteousness)? Do you believe that one must first become a “Jew” in order to become a Christian, or has God been (in general) manifested to the entire world so that we are all (even apart from the OT Law) not without guilt? My objection here is the mandatory use of the OT Law – or even the Ten Commandments – as a necessary beginning.

    Thanks – I did find the radio show, but thought that it may have been another evangelistic method which I had not heard of.
     
  9. evangelist6589

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    I made an error. Comfort does not believe in the doctrine of election as he is constantly saying in his book that only the law can bring people to faith, and those whom say the sinners prayer are false converts. He denies the doctrine of election no doubt. God can use the sinners prayer and other methods to elect his own to salvation. Does God prefer this? No! But He can use them to bring the elect.
     
  10. evangelist6589

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    I like it because it bombs the conscience and shows the sinner his/her sin. MOST modern methods do not do this. TWOTM is far from perfect an does not subscribe to Reformed theology. But its still in my POV the best method of evangelism.
     
  11. evangelist6589

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    If you listened to the old WOTM podcasts from 2006-2008 you would see much similarities with that and Wretched.
     
    #11 evangelist6589, Feb 25, 2014
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  12. evangelist6589

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    The lost will not accept the law, but they will accept the fact that they are LIARS, THIEVES, HATERS, BLASPHEMERS, AND MURDERS AT HEART. Anyone with a conscience can see this and this is what WOTM attempts to do is show someone their GUILT and their sin before a Holy and Just God.

    The problem with just telling people Romans 3:23 and John 3:16 is that people will not understand sin, but will want to say a prayer and may end up a false convert because he/she does not understand sin and what it is. But they are told just to say a prayer and admit they are a sinner and they are in heaven. Simple and it does not require repentance. 2 Cor 5:17 says that if anyone is in Christ he is a new creation. People need to REPENT of their sin and turn to God.

    Lots of New Agers, and Homosexuals have said the prayer. Are they saved?
     
  13. JonC

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    Wait a minute, John. It seems that you are implying that because I don’t think it absolutely necessary to use the OT Law in evangelism that I reject the necessity of repentance. Also, it appears that you are implying that I believe (or have stated) that we are saved by saying “the prayer.” If I am taking your comments wrong, I do apologize…but if not then I believe that you need to reexamine my post as you may have inadvertently taken one statement out of context.

    Are you aware of evangelistic methods that tell people to “say a prayer and you are saved”? Are you aware of evangelistic methods that ignore the necessity of explaining sin? I am not saying that there are none out there…just that I am not aware of any methods that ignore the necessity of explaining our sinfulness (to include, BTW, Arminianism…the one’s I know are of the Free Will Baptist lot, and they are VERY focused on repentance and sin). If so, please include a link (I'd be interested to view the site).
     
    #13 JonC, Feb 25, 2014
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  14. JohnDeereFan

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    I listen to them all the time. They're available as archive podcasts. There is a difference. The WOTM shows focus on evangelism, with the second and part of the third segment devoted either to "phone fishing" or open air preaching. That's on top of the first segment which usually features either open air preaching, one on one witnessing, or a brief discussion of Barry Manilow or Air Supply.

    The new shows don't do that. The closest they come is featuring Trish Ramos one day a week, in a segment in which she gives updates on an evangelism outreach involving the distribution of a DVD.

    Wretched focuses more on social issues, pop culture, and issues in the Church.
     
  15. evangelist6589

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    I only get the 15 minute version as they charge a fee for the full version and thinking about it you are correct and why I like the older WOTM podcasts. It also seemed that Todd promoted more contemporary worship on the older shows which he no longer does on Wretched. Ray Comfort showed up all the time on the old shows and I have yet to hear him on the 15 minute shows of the dozen I have heard.

    He did some of what you said on the older shows but probably much more on the newer shows. But no question its definitely not as evangelist oriented except for witness wednesdays, but I have never heard Comfort, as its all Todd. Kirk and Ray have been ignored and they were on all the time on the older shows.
     
    #15 evangelist6589, Feb 25, 2014
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  16. Iconoclast

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    Do not worry about...a method....WOTM is a suggestion to get people started.Do not make it into ;

    4 He removed the high places, and brake the images, and cut down the groves, and brake in pieces the brasen serpent that Moses had made: for unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it
    : and he called it Nehushtan.


    The best method is prayer...followed by Spirit lead opportunities to convey saving truth from scripture to get sinners covered by the blood, whatever form it takes.
     
  17. JonC

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    :thumbsup: :thumbsup: Methods are good, IMHO, as one starts to witness to others (it allows one to articulate their faith, if that is something they find difficult). But methods can become a crutch and ultimately an obstacle. At some point we need to genuinely engage the lost and be comfortable enough with our own faith to interact with the gospel. I have found it unlikely to witness to two people alike (because people are not the same and their barriers are not the same...people don't always speak the "same language," so to speak).
     
    #17 JonC, Feb 25, 2014
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  18. Iconoclast

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    :thumbs::wavey::thumbs:
     
  19. JohnDeereFan

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    Not that I've heard. They seem to mock it pretty mercilessly.

    He and Kirk show up every now and then, usually when Kirk has a speaking engagement in the area.

    They're not ignored. They're on every now and then. But you have to remember that they're 3,000 miles away and have their own ministries now, so they can't always drop everything to be on wretched.
     
  20. evangelist6589

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    Well they were on all the time on the old show which I definitely found superior in my POV. Not saying Wretched is bad, I just liked WOTM better. The old show definitely featured much more CCM tunes that are not on the new show.

     

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