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Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by jcjordan, Jan 19, 2008.
In your opinion, what do you think the resurgence of Calvinism will do for Evangelism?
Not much different I think.
Evangelism is still a concept in Calvinism...
Most calvinist are missional is why I think it will not matter.
Almost all calvinists today will still preach evangelism.......whether they in fact practice it, my guess is that they're no different than most churches in practice.
That calvinists can be evangelically focused is evidenced by D. James Kennedy's Evangelism Explosion, which is one of the most popular and effective evangelism tools ever produced. Yet Kennedy is a presbyterian and calvinist, who I heard on the radio one time deny that people had free will. Flatly deny, I might add, in spite of what he may have said elsewhere, I did hear the sermon once. So calvinists today generally believe in evangelism.
However, despite their denials, this was not always the case. In the first 250 years or so of calvinism, there simply was not much evangelism. I know, I know, someone will point to someone. But it was not widespread. Evidence of this is the fact that during that time the Roman Catholics were much more evangelical, so much so that most of central and south america are now catholic, not protestant calvinists.
So, were Calvinists the only alternatives to Catholicism? How about the non-calvinist protestants? Would you agree that they also are the blame for catholicism in Central and South America? How many protestant missionaries of either persuasion can you name in the first 200 years after the reformation? Also, would you not credit the spread of the reformation across Europe to a evangelism?
I don't know a single calvinist who does not believe in evangelism. And the few people I know who do not like evangelism and therefore have nothing to do with it are not calvinists.
You could not be more wrong . Have you ever cracked open a legit church history book ?
Yes, actually. And I taught a church history course.
For the point at hand, I might suggest the following:
Earle E. Cairns, Christianity Through The Centuries, A History Of The Christian Church, rev. and enl., (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1981), pages 345-346, 401. (note the page references are to the 1981 edition. The page numbers will be different in the current edition.)
F. Deauville Walker, William Carey, Missionary, Pioneer and Statesman (Chicago: Moody Press, 1980), page 54.
Charles G. Finney, Charles G. Finney, An Autobiography (Old Tappan, NJ: Fleming H. Revel Co., 1876; reprint, n.d.), pages 59-60.
And I respectfully resubmit the evidence of most of central and south america.
It would have been nice for you to have furnished some quotes .
John Calvin died in 1564 . If you are addressing Calvinism since his death and for the next 250 years ( 1814 ) then the host of Puritans alone negates your assertion . To claim they were not evangelistic would be futile on your behalf .
William Carey ( 1761-1834 ) was a Calvinist ! He was already on the mission field by 1793 .
I don't know why you bothered to mention the arch-heretic Charles G. Finney -- he was a full-blown Pelagian . Not a trace of Calvinism in his blood !
You taught a Church History course !!
Personally, I think that a person's view on Cal or no-Cal effect evangelism very little. I think evangelism is based on a persons desire to see people know about Jesus. That desire is not dependent on a person's view of Calvinism.
I think the amount of time a pastor uses in defending his position, whatever his position may be, will begin to destroy evangelism. We spend so much time, effort and energy on talking about the nature of salvation that we don't tell anyone how to be saved.
Isn't the nature of Salvation, also the means of Salvation? Seems there are quite a few who really don't know how they come to believe in Christ. No matter what they believe all cannot be right. I consider it important for everyone to be sure of how, in order to be assured of their Salvation. It's very important in evanglism, that we give the correct information and not what we think it is, but know it is. If everyone here knew the truth of it, there would be no disscussion of it.
Don't assume the points without reading the texts. The references I cited were not dealing with the theology of either Carey or Finney, but the overall church direction at the time. Despite whether I agree or disagree with either man, I'm not going to question their basic honesty......I can only assume that both men were accurate in what they said about history. And Cairns is a standard text.
Furnishing quotes tuns into one-upmaniship instead of a conversation. If you have some texts that present another position, I'd be interested. Until then, I stand by my assertions.
Looks like so far, things would at the very least stay the same with the great expectation that evangelism would be greatly increased. We need to do something. Love is a verb.
There is no doubt that Hypercalvinism has a dampening effect on evangelism, as does the other end of the spectrum any taint of universalism.