Tastes Great or Less Filling

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Mark_13, Feb 4, 2012.

  1. Mark_13

    Mark_13
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2012
    Messages:
    271
    Likes Received:
    0
    (I'm dating myself by that thread title.)

    The people who espouse Calvinism, do not do so because it is superficially easy to understand or because it is a natural or innate point of view. They do so rather, because the Bible clearly teaches it. It seems there reaches a point in most believer's maturity, with enough exposure to scripture, that they start seeing something there that they never noticed before, at least something that was not really pointed out to them in Vacation Bible School or what have you. And it exists all throughout the scripture, in places like Romans 9, which frankly speaks matter of factly for itself and does not need any spin from "Calvinists" or anyone else for its meaning to be transparently plain. And I remember reading that passage sitting in a church pew, when the pastor was talking about something else, and it was a sea change in my perspective, because I did not remember them ever discussing Romans 9 at Bible camp. That's appropriate - its not a teaching for the kiddies really. But the idea, that scripture itself so plainly teaches, that God is ultimately sovereign over all the affairs of men, even extending to those who are born again and those or not, did not engender some internal crisis within me, something I was not psychologically able to deal with. I intuitively understood that this attribute of God did not change what God himself commanded in scripture to man, to spread the gospel and so forth. For whatever reason, then in my late 20's, I was not traumatized by it - in a way I was exhilirated and with maybe a certain degree of pride that I now understood something about God that for whatever reason a lot of people in the church apparently didn't.

    And then we come to this forum, in which there are SCORES of people (baptists) who are vociferously opposed to the clear teaching of scripture in this matter. They are intractable, and unswayable, and for example can put forth a labored and convoluted interpretation of say Romans 9 in another recent thread that is astonishing in its willfull obliviousness to the truth. What does it say for a person to unequivocally and continually and vociferously oppose the truth, here? I do not know. I pose the question rhetorically I suppose to other "Calvinists" in the forum. But I think about where Christ says Satan is a liar and the father of lies and talks about those born of Satan sharing this same attribute - opposition to the truth.

    "Calvinism" is not something that I or other "Calvinists" sit around and obsess about. Scripture teaches it, we consider it whenever scripture does so, but move on. It is only when someone comes along and starts asserting that scripture does not teach it is there a compulsion to set the record straight. And for those continually involved in that endeavor in this forum, e.g. Luke2427, PreacherForTruth, and many others, I salute you for your continuing efforts here. Your efforts are probably worthwhile, as those truly sitting on the fence I imagine are remaining quiet, carefully considering the arguments. Those continually and vocally opposing the truth here are the least likely to be swayed. It's a mystery to me, because to reiterate, when I first started to become aware of this teaching of scripture many years ago, it did not traumatize me at all.

    This is just a statement I'm making - I don't really feel like discussing it. In fact, was hoping this forum would have a myriad of topics to discuss - but no - its calvinism/noncalvinism 24 hours a day. For me anyway, continuing in this debate is giving a false legitimacy to "noncalvinism" that it does not deserve. What does Christ command the disciples - if anyone does not accept your message then wipe the dust from off your sandals (i.e. never have anything to do with them again.) And in another place "do not cast your pearls before swine", "Let the dead bury their own dead", etc. I personally never needed ANYONE to convince me of the truth of "Calvinism". It was clear to me from scripture itself. Those for whom it is not clear even though they have quite evidently seen all the relevant passages, it will probably never be.
     
    #1 Mark_13, Feb 4, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 4, 2012
  2. Winman

    Winman
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2009
    Messages:
    14,768
    Likes Received:
    0
    I can easily see how Calvinists derive their interpretation of Romans 9.

    Rom 9:20 Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?
    21 Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?

    It is easy to see how a Calvinist believes this passage is saying God like a potter created some men to honor, and some to dishonor. But we are told to study and "rightly divide the word". Paul here is refering to OT scripture, which the Jews who were listening to him would know and understand, and has nothing to do with unconditional election whatsoever.

    Jer 18:1 The word which came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying,
    2 Arise, and go down to the potter's house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words.
    3 Then I went down to the potter's house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels.
    4 And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.
    5 Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying,
    6 O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the LORD. Behold, as the clay is in the potter's hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel.
    7 At what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, and to pull down, and to destroy it;
    8 If that nation, against whom I have pronounced, turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do unto them.
    9 And at what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it;
    10 If it do evil in my sight, that it obey not my voice, then I will repent of the good, wherewith I said I would benefit them.
    11 Now therefore go to, speak to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying, Thus saith the LORD; Behold, I frame evil against you, and devise a device against you: return ye now every one from his evil way, and make your ways and your doings good.

    The Jews Paul was addressing would have known this passage in Jeremiah speaking of "the potter". Is this passage saying God has unconditionally elected some men to salvation, and chosen to pass other men by? No. It is speaking of nations, and God says that if a nation he has determined to pluck up and destroy, if that nation turns from it's evil, he will repent of the evil he intended toward that nation. He likewise says that if he has chosen to build and plant a nation, if that nation does evil in his sight and will not listen to his voice, he will repent of the good he had said he would do unto them.

    So, there is nothing unconditional about this whatsoever, a nation that does good will be blessed, and a nation that does evil will be punished.

    And this is what Paul is refering to in Romans 9. He is speaking of the Jews who had rejected Jesus, and now they will be rejected. And the Gentile nations who had heard and believed the gospel will be blessed.

    Rom 9:30 What shall we say then? That the Gentiles, which followed not after righteousness, have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness which is of faith.
    31 But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness.
    32 Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumblingstone;
    33 As it is written, Behold, I lay in Sion a stumblingstone and rock of offence: and whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

    So, Calvinism misinterprets Romans 9 because they do not know OT scripture well. Paul in no way is speaking of unconditional election in Romans 9. He is saying that God is rejecting Israel because they have rejected the gospel, and that he is now blessing the Gentile nations because they have heard and believed the gospel.
     
    #2 Winman, Feb 5, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 5, 2012
  3. agedman

    agedman
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2011
    Messages:
    4,258
    Likes Received:
    187
    I'm not certain that I totally agree.

    If one were to use the "potter" as the only part of Romans 9, then you might be accurate.

    And, certainly, Paul is making a case of rejection and selection.

    BUT, earlier in that same chapter, Paul states,
    "Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel:
    Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called.
    That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed."​


    Now it would seem that the statement "they are not all Israel, which are of Israel" indicates a point of support for the Calvinist view.

    The children of the flesh are not the same as the children of the promise. Only the children of promise are counted for the seed.

    The chapter goes on with Paul using multiple examples of the principle.

    To further reinforce the disagreement of your statement, the very next chapter continues the same line of reasoning as Romans 9 with a discussion of salvation.
     
  4. quantumfaith

    quantumfaith
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2010
    Messages:
    6,890
    Likes Received:
    0
    The people who espouse Calvinism, do not do so because it is superficially easy to understand or because it is a natural or innate point of view. They do so rather, because the Bible clearly teaches it.

    If scripture so clearly and obviously teaches these principles, why such a raging debate for so many centuries? Many in the ranks of Calvinism are excellent and talented scholars...True.

    Is what Calvinism teaches "anti-biblical" in anyway.....I really don't know

    Calvinism, like any other template for scripture interpretation and exegesis is mankinds attempt to classify and categorize, which by the way, seems to be somewhat of an innate (created) desire.

    The men and women who have contributed to the cause of Calvinism throughout history are no doubt great people, strong and steadfast in their faith and wonderful examples to emulate.
     
  5. quantumfaith

    quantumfaith
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2010
    Messages:
    6,890
    Likes Received:
    0
    It seems there reaches a point in most believer's maturity, with enough exposure to scripture, that they start seeing something there that they never

    I understand (intellectually) the intent of this, but one must be EXTREMELY cautious here, as pride can so easily slip in. There can be a fine line between confidence and out right self aggrandizing pride.
     
  6. convicted1

    convicted1
    Expand Collapse
    Retired Staff

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2007
    Messages:
    9,011
    Likes Received:
    3
    I heard a few years ago, that a tanker full of Miller Lite, wrecked and the beverage spilled out into a river. The chemists took samples of the water and tested it to see if it harmed the water. They fought over their findings. One said the water "tastes great", the other said "less fishing". :laugh:


    I heard a comedian say this one time.
     
  7. quantumfaith

    quantumfaith
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2010
    Messages:
    6,890
    Likes Received:
    0
    that God is ultimately sovereign over all the affairs of men, even extending to those who are born again and those or not, did not engender some internal crisis within me, something I was not psychologically able to deal with. I intuitively understood that this attribute of God did not change what God himself commanded in scripture to man, to spread the gospel and so forth. For whatever reason, then in my late 20's, I was not traumatized by it - in a way I was exhilirated and with maybe a certain degree of pride that I now understood something about God that for whatever reason a lot of people in the church apparently didn't.

    Have you heard (seen) anyone in BB land espouse that God is NOT sovereign over all, ALL of creation including mankind? Both sides of the theological debate have the "hot button" issues and phrases that they jump on with their own set of talking points. Sovereignty happens to be one of them

    Person A: You don't believe God is sovereign
    Person B: Yes I do
    Person A: No you don't
    Person B: Yes I do

    ad nauseum
     

Share This Page

Loading...