What is wrong with Arminianism?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by bjonson, Feb 7, 2006.

  1. bjonson

    bjonson
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    This post should get a lively discussion started.

    The following was written by Rev. Steven Houck and can be found at the URL below the quote:

    1. The Christ of Arminianism - loves every individual person in the world and sincerely desires their salvation.

    The Christ of the Bible - earnestly loves and desires the salvation of only those whom God has unconditionally chosen to salvation. (Ps. 5:5, Ps. 7:11, Ps. 11:5, Matt. 11:27, John 17:9-10, Acts 2:47, Acts 13:48, Rom. 9:10-13, Rom. 9:21-24, Eph. 1:3-4)

    2. The Christ of Arminianism - offers salvation to every sinner and does all in his power to bring them to salvation. His offer and work are often frustrated, for many refuse to come.

    The Christ of the Bible - effectually calls to Himself only the elect and sovereignly brings them to salvation. Not one of them will be lost. (Isa. 55:11, John 5:21, John 6:37-40, John 10:25-30, John 17:2, Phil. 2:13)

    3. The Christ of Arminianism - can not regenerate and save a sinner who does not first choose Christ with his own "free will." All men have a "free will" by which they can either accept or reject Christ. That "free will" may not be violated by Christ.

    The Christ of the Bible - sovereignly regenerates the elect sinner apart from his choice, for without regeneration the spiritually dead sinner can not choose Christ. Faith is not man's contribution to salvation but the gift of Christ which He sovereignly imparts in regeneration. (John 3:3, John 6:44 & 65, John 15:16, Acts 11:18, Rom. 9:16, Eph. 2:1,Eph. 2:8-10, Phil. 1:29, Hebr. 12:2)

    4. The Christ of Arminianism - died on the cross for every individual person and thereby made it possible for every person to be saved. His death, apart from the choice of man, was not able to actually save anyone for many for whom he died are lost.

    The Christ of the Bible - died for only God's elect people and thereby actually obtained salvation for all those for whom He died. His death was a substitutionary satisfaction which actually took away the guilt of His chosen people. (Luke 19:10, John 10:14-15 & 26, Acts 20:28, Rom. 5:10, Eph. 5:25, Hebr. 9:12, I Peter 3:18)

    5. The Christ of Arminianism - loses many whom he has "saved" because they do not continue in faith. Even if he does give them "eternal security," as some say, that security is not based upon his will or work but the choice which the sinner made when he accepted Christ.

    The Christ of the Bible - preserves His chosen people so that they can not lose their salvation but persevere in the faith to the very end. He preserves them by the sovereign electing will of God, the power of His death, and the mighty working of His Spirit. (John 5:24, John 10:26-29, Rom. 8:29-30, Rom. 8:35-39, I Peter 1:2-5, Jude 24-25)

    http://www.apuritansmind.com/Arminianism/Houck%20ChristOfArminianism.htm
     
  2. Ron Arndt

    Ron Arndt
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    bjonson

    I suppose Rev Dake of the Dake Annotated bible and the Catholic church would whole heartily agree with your position and you do offer some good scriptures, as does Rev Dake.

    But your position has a major weakness. If a person must do all the things that you posted above to be FINALLY saved, then was Jesus and Paul in error when they said a sinner is saved the moment they believe or what? There are nearly 100 scriptures in the bible that state a person is saved, justified and HAS eternal life when they place their faith in Jesus Christ. That's a lot of scriptures wouldn't you say?

    And another point.When does one become born again? Let's say it's when they believe. Or let's go so far and say it is when they believe and are water baptized. If they are born again are they not children of God and have been translated into the very kingdom of God? Do those who are born again become UN-born when they fall into sin? Are they still children of God or what? If they become UN born, then do they have to get born again all over again? And what about the next time they fall into sin. How many times is one born again?

    Then there is the matter of what happens to a sinner once he becomes a child of God? Does he simply believe, repent and get baptized and then he or she is left on their own to keep up their salvation by their own human ability? Or is the child of God indwelt by the Holy Spirit of God. sealed, and guided, convicted and led ? In other words does the child of God NOW have a HELPMATE within him or her, whereas before they were saved they had none?

    Lastly, let us talk of eternal life itself. Did Christ mean what he said, that whosoever BELIEVES in me has ALREADY passed from death to life? Did he? And what kind of eternal life would this be if it were cut short from the believer every time they sinned? That would be temporary life and not ETERNAL life, now wouldn't it?

    So I would like to hear your replies to these issues. Thank you.Shalom.
     
  3. OldRegular

    OldRegular
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    Ron

    A person is "born again" when God regenerates him, when He makes that which was dead in sin spiritually alive.

    Ephesians 2:1-5, NKJV

    1. And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins,
    2. in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience,
    3. among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others.
    4. But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us,
    5. even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),
     
  4. Ron Arndt

    Ron Arndt
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    OldRegular

    Do you know what regenerated means? It means to be begotten of born. You are trying to tell me that a person is born again or regenerated BEFORE they believe the gospel. But the bible does NOT teach that, Calvinism does. One believes so that they can be be born again by the Holy Spirit. If one was born again or regenerated BEFORE they believed, then they would not have to believe to begin with.

    Please read John 1:12-13. Here it plainly says those THAT RECEIVED HIM, to them was given THE POWER to believe in his name. These same people who received him and believed in him were then BORN OF GOD. They were not born of God first and then received him and believed on Jesus, but it is the other way around.

    Also I John 5:1 says whosoever believes that Jesus is the Christ IS born of God.FIRST comes believing and THEN the new birth. Also in Eph 1:13 Paul the apostle clearly states that when a person trusts in the gospel it IS THEN that one is sealed with the Holy Spirit.
     
  5. AresMan

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    I can't (yet) say that I agree 100% with "Calvinists", but I will staunchly support any Calvinist who believes in eternal security over any Arminian who believes in the possibility of losing one's salvation.
     
  6. OldRegular

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    I responded to this on another thread. No use repeating.
     
  7. Tom Butler

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    I posted this some time ago in another thread sense exhausted. It is a paraphrase of something Spurgeon said. I was criticized for posting in because it supposedly misrepresented the Arminian position. Tell me where.

    The Arminian Prayer

    God, I thank you that You provided salvation for every person and that everyone has the equal opportunity to that salvation. And I thank You for my salvation. Actually, I thank me some for my salvation because You gave us all the freedom to choose. Yes, God, every man You gave the freedom to choose or reject You. I chose You and I'm sure You're happy that I did.

    After You provided salvation for everybody it is good that somebody responds to it. I responded to it and I thank You. Well, really, it was my choice so I don't thank You for my response. I'm sure You're grateful to me that I responded. If I and some others had not chosen to respond You would not have any children and that would be too bad. So I know that You're delighted with those of us that had the good sense to do what is right, to love You and choose You.

    Everybody could have chosen You, but I'm the one who did. It is just too bad that those other people were not as clever as I am. God, I'm sure You're disappointed in them. But don't take it too hard. You still have us that had the brains to appropriate Your salvation. God, I'm obliged for Your part in my salvation. And though You have never said so, I'm sure You are appreciative to me for my part as well. There is no doubt that when I get to heaven You will let me know how grateful You are. We've worked this out together for our mutual benefit. I thank You and You thank me. How nice.

    We are a real team.

    And God, I especially thank You that I am not like those self-righteous Calvinist. Well, actually, You didn't have anything to do with that so I don't thank You. It was my choice to believe what I believe so I'm sure You are happy with me. Imagine me thinking that You were so egotistical as to do all the choosing Yourself. How unfair! Those Calvinist are so self-righteous to think that You would just save them while they do nothing but sin. But I'm not like that. I know I made the right decision when I chose You, God, and You can take great joy in it.

    To God be all the glory... Well, a little of it anyway.

    Amen.
     
  8. Gina B

    Gina B
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    bjonson, I take issue with how this is posted, as if one side worships a false god.
    That is very wrong.
    While I'm not one of the free will crowd, I often find that we misunderstand them as much as they misunderstand us. In the end, both groups give glory to God for the gift of salvation.
    You do NOT have the right, in fact you are causing extreme damage to the church and harming the saints, to state that these are two different gods being served. I'm not so sure God wants you calling him a false god, because some people don't agree on this one particular issue.

    Words mean stuff. Use more caution when you throw out the name of a holy God and talk about his saints.
     
  9. bjonson

    bjonson
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    Gina,

    I am sorry for offending, I didn't mean to. The issue of Calvinism vs. Arminianism on these discussion boards USUALLY involves a bunch of ill-informed people calling Calvinists heretics or similar. I posted this as part humor/part serious as a response. Please forgive me if I offended you.

    I do believe there are biblical errors in the Arminian system. I don't know the author of the comparison that I posted, but I doubt if he would say an Arminian is following a false god. However, I should have used better judgement in posting.

    I am convinced that Arminianism is biblically wrong. However, I do not accuse Arminians of worshiping a false god.

    B
     
  10. Tom Butler

    Tom Butler
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    Question: Under the Arminian view, can anyone be saved independently of any prior action by God?

    Such as, Holy Spirit conviction, drawing, illumination, etc.

    In the Arminian view, man's will trumps God's will. And this human will is God-given from birth. And God saves in response to man's choice. So, again,are any of those actions by God necessary?

    Tom B.
     
  11. Brother James

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    Arminianism is salvation by works pure and simple.
     
  12. Brother James

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    http://www.pbministries.org/books/pink/Sovereignty/sovereignty.htm

    How different is the God of the Bible from the God of modern Christendom! The conception of Deity which prevails most widely today, even among those who profess to give heed to the Scriptures, is a miserable caricature, a blasphemous travesty of the Truth. The God of the twentieth century is a helpless, effeminate being who commands the respect of no really thoughtful man. The God of the popular mind is the creation of a maudlin sentimentality. The God of many a present-day pulpit is an object of pity rather than of awe-inspiring reverence.[1] To say that God the Father has purposed the salvation of all mankind, that God the Son died with the express intention of saving the whole human race, and that God the Holy Spirit is now seeking to win the world to Christ; when, as a matter of common observation, it is apparent that the great majority of our fellow-men are dying in sin, and passing into a hopeless eternity: is to say that God the Father is disappointed, that God the Son is dissatisfied, and that God the Holy Spirit is defeated. We have stated the issue baldly, but there is no escaping the conclusion. To argue that God is "trying His best" to save all mankind, but that the majority of men will not let Him save them, is to insist that the will of the Creator is impotent, and that the will of the creature is omnipotent. To throw the blame, as many do, upon the Devil, does not remove the difficulty, for if Satan is defeating the purpose of God, then, Satan is Almighty and God is no longer the Supreme Being.
     
  13. Charles Meadows

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    This whole thread is likely to be a lot of torching of straw men.

    Most baptists do not hold to "Calvinist" beliefs. Those in this camp generally do so because they reject the issue of a limited atonement. This does not mean that they agree with everything Jakob Harmens said - they are not truly "Arminian".

    My problem with "Calvinists" as a whole is that, while they claim (albeit reverently) that they believe God is absolutely sovereign they in truth hold systematic theology to be sovereign.

    There is ample scriptural support for all of the "5 points of Calvinism". There is no doubt regarding this.

    But if these 5 points are held so tightly that the "Calvinist" thinks that the "Arminian" is a heretic or believes a false gospel then he/she is worshipping a systematic theology.
     
  14. bjonson

    bjonson
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    Charles,

    You make a good point. I appreciate the fact that my church, which is definitely Cavlinistic soteriologically, has never used the "C" word in any teaching or preaching. I've never heard the "5 points" mentioned. We simply enjoy solid Bible teaching. That is the reason I like John MacArthur so much. He is Calvinistic but doesn't care for the label...

    Also, a careful review of "reformed" literature reveals that the essence of what we now call Calvinism is a high view of God, His Word and His Sovereignty. It isn't about predestination or election as much as sola scriptura, sola fida, etc.
     
  15. OldRegular

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    What you have stated is, sadly, so true!
     
  16. OldRegular

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    On another thread I suggested that we need to get rid of the term Calvinism because it carries so much baggage that people will not listen to what Scripture teaches about the Doctrines of Grace.
     
  17. Gina B

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    bjonson, thank you so much for the clarification. It does appear that I misunderstood your view on this.

    I agree on the terminology being a source of strife. A service in one church was very interesting. Although it was a church that strongly opposed Calvinistic doctrine, they agreed to accept me as a member. During one sermon I was near tears over the strong statements from the pastor, which was highly unusual of me as I was used to such opposition. However, this one was a particularly scathing speech, complete with the obligatory "heresy, dividing, damnable" terms.

    I ended up dropping my jaw a few minutes later when he began giving a most beautiful and concise description of the sovreignty of God, and teaching the concepts of grace. I've heard five point Calvinists give less convincing arguments than that man. [​IMG]

    That was a hard one to not say anything about. It's even funnier now thinking back to that night, with everyone amening BOTH sections of it, and me smack in the middle just looking around going "huuuuuuuuhhhhhhhhhhhh?"
     
  18. StraightAndNarrow

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    The article that you referred us to does just that, however.
     
  19. Karen

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    The article that you referred us to does just that, however. </font>[/QUOTE]As does another very current article on that website.
    Many strong Calvinists do believe that an Arminian who truly believes that system and not Calvinism is guilty of "damnable heresy". Their words. Of course, some of them also say that they have never REALLY met a consistent Arminian.
    But that such a theoretical one is perishing.

    Many go even further. They lump Spurgeon and Martyn-Lloyd Jones in among the unsaved. Because although they were 5-pointers, they thought many Arminians were saved, that salvation is through Christ, not understanding a theological system perfectly.
    To these Calvinists, Arminian in all of this means a 4.75 point Calvinist or less.

    Karen
     
  20. Craigbythesea

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    Bjonson wrote,

    I do not believe that it is appropriate to post a link to an evil, judgmental, arrogant, hateful, heretical website that has caused countless Christians to doubt that they are the elect of God and consequently abandon their hope in Christ. I would have included the adjective “Satanic,” but because that may be a violation of the rules of this board, I did not include that particular and most accurate adjective.

    Anyone who takes the Most Holy Word of God and viciously and maliciously chops it into pieces, and then rearranges the pieces of it out of context to fit their false and damnable doctrines is worthy of the very fires of hell.

    Not one of these most disgusting, damnable doctrines was known to the church until it after it had passed through the dark ages of sin, ignorance and corruption making it vulnerable to these pernicious lies from the very pit of hell.

    The God of the Bible is NOT the evil, judgmental, arrogant, hateful god that Mr. Steven Houck makes Him out to be.

    John 3:16. "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.
    17. "For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.

    Matt. 11:28. "Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy- laden, and I will give you rest." (NASB, 1995)

    Any God fearing man who owns a Bible could find therein hundreds of Scriptures that prove the falseness of Calvinism.

    [​IMG]
     

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