The Major Mistake of Calvinism?

Discussion in 'Calvinism/Arminianism Debate' started by The Biblicist, Dec 31, 2013.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. The Biblicist

    The Biblicist
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Messages:
    14,185
    Likes Received:
    207
    The major mistake of Calvinism is taking the biblical teaching of man's inability to attain righteousness by law and applying it to the erroneous and unfounded belief that men must be equally unable to attain righteousness by faith.- Skandelon

    There are several weaknesses in the above statement.

    1. "Inability to attain righteousness by law" misrepresents our view of inability because it deals with the consequence not the cause. The cause of inability is the state or condition of the fallen nature in its response to God. The State of enmity against God is the cause for inability to submit to the Law of God.

    2. By redirecting the subject to the consequences rather than dealing with the cause of inability, Skandelon avoids the real problem which is the state or condition of the fallen nature which makes it impossible to seek or please God.

    3. Total inability is the consequence of total depravity not vice versa. Fallen man cannot BECAUSE they will not and the reason they WILL NOT is due to the state or condition of the fallen nature.

    Seeking God by faith falls within the scope of "pleasing God" (heb. 11:6) which Paul claims that Romans 8:7 is the cause for inability of all "in the flesh" to please God (Rom. 8:8). Therefore, Skandelon's statement is completely and entirely false as the state or condition of the fallen nature prevents both attaining righteousness by the law or seeking God by faith equally.
     
    #1 The Biblicist, Dec 31, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 31, 2013
  2. The Biblicist

    The Biblicist
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Messages:
    14,185
    Likes Received:
    207

    Skandelon's statement attempts to define and restrict inability merely within the confines of incapable of submission to God's law, thus failure to attain its righteousness, when in fact Paul describes that as merely one symptom and secondary consequence ("and is not subject to the Law of God") rather than the primary cause which is "enmity against God" Himself (Rom. 8:7) and it is this primary cause which makes all "in the flesh" incapable of seeking God through faith (Rom. 8:8). So Skandelon has not only reversed the cause and consequence as presented by Paul in Romans 8:7 but denied what Paul defines as the real cause for inability which is found in the enmity of the fallen nature against God Himself. Instead, Skandelon has redefined inability by restricting it to one of the consequences when in fact, the fallen nature is equally incapable of seeking God through faith as much as it is incapable of submitting to the Law of God as both are EQUAL consequences of the same root issue which is a STATE OF ENMITY against God Himself.

    Since the condition or state of the fallen nature is enmity against God Himself (Rom. 8:7) therefore all who are "in the flesh" (Rom. 8:7) will not, and thus cannot submit to the Law of God (inability to attain its righteousness) any more or less than they will not and thus cannot seek God through faith (Heb. 11:6; Rom. 3:10-12; 8:8).

    However, by restricting it to, and defining it by failure to attain the righteousness of the Law, Skandelon has attempted to make ONE consequence the extent of inability when in fact it true extent includes seeking God as much as submitting to God because the real issue is the state of the fallen nature which IS enmity against God Himself.
     
    #2 The Biblicist, Jan 1, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 1, 2014
  3. Van

    Van
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2011
    Messages:
    9,516
    Likes Received:
    49
    Here are the major mistakes of Calvinism:

    1) Total Spiritual Inability is mistaken doctrine because unregenerate men of flesh were seeking God (i.e. entering heaven). Matthew 23:13

    2) Unconditional Election of individuals is mistaken doctrine because our individual election for salvation is through faith in the truth, 2 Thessalonians 2:13.

    3) Limited Atonement is mistaken doctrine because Christ died for all, becoming the propitiation or means of salvation for the whole world, including those not saved such as the false teacher of 2 Peter 2:1.

    4) Irresistible Grace is mistaken doctrine because those men who were "entering heaven" were blocked by false teaching. Matthew 23:13
     
  4. The Biblicist

    The Biblicist
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Messages:
    14,185
    Likes Received:
    207
    The OP is clear that I am addressing Skandelon's statement which contains the phrase of the OP subject line. Care to comment on the OP?
     
  5. Skandelon

    Skandelon
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Messages:
    9,638
    Likes Received:
    0
    Actually, the 'cause' is equally my point. BeCAUSE man is unable to fully submit himself to the law in order to attain righteousness, Calvinists erroneously presume man is unable to trust in Christ, who fulfill the law for us. The CAUSE is very much in focus in my statement. Calvinists use proof texts which speak of man's inability to attain righteousness by works of the law to prop up their presumptions which deny human responsibility, even in light of the gospel appeal.

    See above. It is not about the consequences alone. Its the presumption that the cause of A necessitates the cause of B, which is unfounded biblically.

    That is the point up for debate.

    Which also leads us to the other major mistake of Calvinism. Divine Culpability: God's decree of the consequences from the fall would be 'total inability.' You claim the condition is just 'natural' or 'inherent' in the attempts to shelter you perspective from divine culpability issues, but a simple definition of those terms reveals the error of the claim.

    And that is all you got...one little verse which could easily be taken to mean that as long as one continues to walk in the flesh he cannot please God. It says nothing about the ability of the individual to do otherwise. It doesn't talk about man's inability to respond to the powerful gospel appeal. The verse doesn't even mention the gospel, yet somehow you can magically tell that the words 'those in the flesh cannot please God' must mean that there is NO HOPE for that individual to ever come to faith with anything less than an IRRESISTIBLE working of Grace...somehow you know an ENABLING working of Grace just wouldn't be sufficient..all from that one little phrase. You have amazing insight...or is that just eisegesis?
     
    #5 Skandelon, Jan 1, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 1, 2014
  6. The Biblicist

    The Biblicist
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Messages:
    14,185
    Likes Received:
    207
    No, you are still ignoring the cause throughout this whole post. The cause is stated to be the condition of the "carnal mind" and that condition "IS enmity against God." Inability to submit to the Law of God or please God are the consequences not the cause of inability.

    The condition of the "carnal" (fleshly) "mind" (mindset or will in action) "IS enmity against God." The will set in motion IS antagonistic to God - "against God." It is this CONDITION that causes both inability to submit to the Law of God (neither indeed CAN be) and the inability to please God ("CANNOT").

    You simply ignore (really deny) the condition of the fallen nature. It is the condition of the fallen nature because verse 7 is Paul's explanation of why those "in the flesh CANNOT please God. Now, lets address what it means to be "in the flesh."


    Romans 8:8-9 establishes that the phrase "in the flesh" is to be contrasted with those "in the Spirit" which is defined as all those that have the indwelling Spirit. "In the flesh" is further defined as those that are "none of his."

    So in this context, there are only two classes of mankind being considered - those "none of his" = "in the flesh" versus those that are his "in the Spirit."

    So your suggestion "which could easily be taken to mean as long as one continues to walk in the flesh" is wrong for several reasons.

    1. The only alternative option provided is to be "in the Spirit" = having the indwelling Spirit = being His. Hence, one is either lost (in the flesh) or saved (in the Spirit) = meaning you are his or not one of His children.

    2. Verses 8-9 have nothing to do with WALKING but rather the STATE of which a man is "IN." When the Apostle talks about WALKING it is with the preposition "AFTER the flesh" or "AFTER the Spirit" where the Greek preposition "kata" is used, which means "according to."




    You are failing to see that verse 8 is given by Paul to explain why those "in the flesh" are WITHOUT ABILITY. In other words, according to Paul they are dominated by the fleshly mindset which "IS enmity against God" and that is WHY those "in the flesh" cannot submit to the law of God and neither indeed CAN BE and "cannot please God."


    It most certainly does address that issue. First, it describes a state that is incapable of PLEASING GOD and coming to God by faith is the most elementary necessity to please God - Heb. 11:6.

    Furthermore, verse 8 is directly contrasted to what is necessary to please God and that is to be "in the Spirit" or have the indwelling Spirit of God (v. 9-13).

    This same condition which is summarized in Romans 8:7-8 was expanded in Romans 3:9-18 denying that those in such a condition will "seek" after God.
     
  7. Skandelon

    Skandelon
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Messages:
    9,638
    Likes Received:
    0
    Please follow me. I'm accepting your premise for the sake of this argument. Let's presume that it is completely true that man's condition is at 'enmity against God' and because of that he cannot submit to the Law of God, nor while remaining in the flesh can he even please God. Now, even by accepting that premise it SAYS NOTHING ABOUT THE POWER NEEDED TO ENABLE A RESPONSE. You assume its an irresistible power, I don't. That is the only real difference here, thus to continue to point to the cause of man's disability as proof for your view of irresistible grace doesn't follow, because this passage doesn't even address that point.

    You believe the cause for man's inability to submit to the law is the same cause for man's inability to respond to his grace, which is UNFOUNDED BIBLICALLY. It presumes God's grace cannot be sufficient to enable responsibility, but instead must be the response itself.
     
  8. Winman

    Winman
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2009
    Messages:
    14,768
    Likes Received:
    0
    Biblicist completely ignores Matthew 26:41 which shows man can be willing to obey God;

    Mat 26:41 Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.

    Jesus clearly distinguishes between the spirit and flesh in this verse, and shows that man can be quite willing to obey God.
     
  9. Skandelon

    Skandelon
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Messages:
    9,638
    Likes Received:
    0
    Look at it this way. What if I attempting to argue that the work of irresistible regeneration wasn't sufficient to enable mankind to please God based on the phraseology of this verse?

    After all, we remain 'in the flesh' until our earthly bodies are redeemed, thus this verse MUST be teaching that man cannot please God until they have a fully glorified body.

    See what I've done? I've PRESUMED your solution isn't sufficient to enable mankind to believe and please God on the basis of this verse, which is exactly what you are doing to us. You are PRESUMING the grace has to be irresistible....you are presuming the grace does the RESPONDING for the man, verses 'enabling' a response of the man. John 6 uses the word 'enabled' for a reason.
     
  10. The Biblicist

    The Biblicist
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Messages:
    14,185
    Likes Received:
    207
    Yes, it does by providing the only alternative contrast to that state which is identified as "in the Spirit" as contrasted to "in the flesh." Indeed, He continues to address that very issue of ability to put the flesh to death only by the Spirit - vv. 9-13.
     
  11. The Biblicist

    The Biblicist
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Messages:
    14,185
    Likes Received:
    207
    This verse is moot! They were born again children of God having the Spirit of God. Even if you believe the Spirit did not permenantly indwell them, their ability to do spiritual things is only by the Spirit.

    Moreover, the baptism in the Spirit is an INSTITUTIONAL indwelling not INDIVIDUAL indwelling and the INSTITUTIONAL baptism always required previous gospel conversion and WATER baptism (Mt. 3:11; Acts 1:5).
     
  12. The Biblicist

    The Biblicist
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Messages:
    14,185
    Likes Received:
    207
    The context denies the application you are making. The phrase "in the flesh" can refer to the regenerated man who now lives in the physical unredeemed body in some contexts while in other contexts it refers to those who are wholly unredeemed inwardly and outwardly and that is the the precise meaning demanded by the contrast between verse 8 with verse 9.
     
  13. Skandelon

    Skandelon
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Messages:
    9,638
    Likes Received:
    0
    Now watch carefully what I do...

    The phrase 'in the flesh' can refer to the lost man who lives in darkness without the light of the gospel.

    See we can do that too. That is my point. The verse doesn't address the LEVEL of grace needed to overcome this disability. It could simply be a restatement of what Paul says later in the same book when he writes, "How can they believe in one whom they have not heard?" They will remain in the darkness UNLESS they HEAR! But once they hear they have no excuses.
     
  14. Skandelon

    Skandelon
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Messages:
    9,638
    Likes Received:
    0
    By the irresistible work of the Spirit or just 'by the Spirit.' That is where your argument falls short. You are still under the Calvinistic delusion that for a giver to receive full credit for giving a gift he must give it irresistibly.
     
  15. The Biblicist

    The Biblicist
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Messages:
    14,185
    Likes Received:
    207
    However, it does not mean that in this context because of the obvious contrast that is being clearly made in verses 7-9. He does not say "SOME" that are "in the flesh" in verse 8 nor does he say "SOME" that are "in the flesh" in verse 9 are "none of His." So your argument is moot!
     
  16. Van

    Van
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2011
    Messages:
    9,516
    Likes Received:
    49
    Total Spiritual Inability is mistaken doctrine, and is the subject of Skandelon's quote and your rebuttal. Therefore your comment above is off topic, the typical shuck and jive presented to change the subject away from the mistaken doctrines of Calvinism.
     
  17. Skandelon

    Skandelon
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Messages:
    9,638
    Likes Received:
    0
    No, it says, "Those who are in the flesh cannot please God," it says nothing about the requirements needed to move from acting in accordance with the flesh and in accordance with the Spirit.

    Given that the gospel is said to be powerful, and truth is said to bring 'freedom,' and the very words that Christ spoke are said to be 'life.' I see no ground on which your premise to stand, for to do so means we'd have to ASSUME the insufficiency of God's Word to enable the disabled.
     
  18. Skandelon

    Skandelon
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Messages:
    9,638
    Likes Received:
    0
    This still stands too....
     
  19. agedman

    agedman
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2011
    Messages:
    4,258
    Likes Received:
    187
    Van,

    If anyone knows how to dance around on the issues, it isn't the Cal view, but the numerous non-cals.

    Cals generally lace their posts with Scripture and/or Scripture principle, not just opinion of who is dancing and who is a wall flower.

    See an example given below:

     
  20. The Biblicist

    The Biblicist
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    Messages:
    14,185
    Likes Received:
    207
    No, it says, "So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God."

    Paul is giving verse 7 as the explanation why those "in the flesh", meaning those without the Spirit of God cannot please God. He then explains how pleasing God can only be accomplished "in the Sprit" in verses 10-13. The contrasting explanations repudiate your entire explanation.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page

Loading...