Why Do Some Christians Almost "hate" Concept of There being Election by GOD?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by JesusFan, Mar 17, 2011.

  1. JesusFan

    JesusFan
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    Seems that some react very strongly to the concept of there being individual Election by GOD of the saints...

    The doctrine that GOD has decreed to save those He has choen to be placed into the body of Christ, done from foundation of World..

    Elected individual, not a "plan or method"

    based soely upon the love and grace of GOD alone, nothing they do to obtain it...

    What is so wrong about that?
    Is it wrong to allow GOD to judge/decide those who are part of theElect?
     
  2. Tom Bryant

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    I don't get involved in the discussions about elections. I am not a Calvinist and certainly not an arminian. But the reason why people react is because they don't think that's what the Bible teaches. They are reacting not against the concept, but against the concept that what you present is what the Bible says.

    That's my simple explanation.
     
  3. jbh28

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    Some view election as God limiting those that can be saved. That's why you will see passages like John 3:16 and others that teach that whosoever believes will be saved. If God limits salvation to only the elect and a non elect person were to believe, they wouldn't be saved. Of course this isn't the teaching of election. It isn't limiting at all and it is 100% true that whoever believes will be saved. There will be no believers that will not be saved.

    That's why I believe it gets to be such a heated discussion many times. It has a lot to do with perspective. Once that comes from a non-election perspective will many times see election as a limiter instead of what it really is.
     
  4. Iconoclast

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    No....it is not wrong . It is scriptural teaching.
    1]Most Christians believe it.Some see it right away.Some struggle with some of the teaching on an emotional level because of their own personality and upbringing are different from how God declares the truth to be.

    2]Some christians do not fully understand it yet, but desire to and still are searching it out.They might be young converts ,unaware that it is even an issue.

    3]Some who profess to be christians are not...so they do not have the Spirit,and cannot perceive the truth of God. They have a natural understanding as if the bible was a poem that they give meaning to.
    7Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.

    4]Some false professors are so full of themselves that they believe they know better than God himself,and attempt to dictate to God what can and cannot be.....The ones who say things like......I cannot worship a God who:
    kills everyone in a flood,,,, or the Ot God was a God of judgement, but now their is a God of grace. or I cannot worship a God who would elect some persons and not give everyone a fair chance.
     
  5. Baptist Believer

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    Thank you for this perspective.

    The reason I reject 5-point Calvinism is because I don't think it is completely biblical. It appeals to my mind and intellect, since it neatly wraps up a number of questions regarding why some people follow Jesus and others reject Him, but I cannot hold to it (at least at this time) because it does not reconcile with the totality of the biblical witness, in my opinion. And the versions of Calvinism I have encountered depersonalize God in my opinion, rather than glorify Him. From a Western Greek-philosophy based perspective, God is glorified by being disengaged from interacting with the ins-and-outs of human frailties (such as the belief that God is impassible), but the scripture is an Eastern book. (Certainly there are Western elements such as John's use of "The Word" motif in John 1, the issues facing the New Testament church concerning Gnosticism, and Paul's missionary journeys where he presented the gospel on Mars Hill.)

    In my limited experience, the people I have known who wholeheartedly embraced 5-point Calvinism learned it at the same time they first seriously started studying the scriptures. In my experience, I studied the scriptures very seriously for several years before I was exposed to 5-point Calvinism (first, in the books of R.C. Sproul). I appreciated much of what I read, but I easily refuted several of the vital assertions in the book I was reading based on the scripture I already knew.

    I think the scripture teaches both "election by God from all eternity" as well as "whosoever will." Additionally, I believe that God allows free will to reject Him and all of His overtures and that God's calling is essential, but can be thwarted by the free will God has allowed.

    I do not pretend to understand exactly how that works, but that seems to be what scripture teaches.
     
  6. Ed B

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    I think there are many answers to this and I will add one.

    As Americans I think we have a deep rooted culture aversion to issues of sovereignty where it impinges on personal liberty. Since the American civil religion prizes personal freedom above all else, it’s hard for the casual Christian – including me - to accept that personal freedom is usurped or limited by anyone, even the Divine. I agree we chafe the most at the idea that election limits who will go to Heaven without affording everyone the free exercise of their will to accept or reject the Gospel.

    Now when we pray for the salvation of loved ones, we could care less about usurping free will. At least that is what I hear when people pray publicly for lost loved ones.
     
  7. preachinjesus

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    1. To disagree isn't to hate. We have to move the emotionalism away from the discussion.

    2. I believe in election. But I reject the Reformed definition of it.

    3. I don't hate my Reformed brothers and sisters in Christ. I just disagree with their interpretations.

    4. ἐκλεκτός is a Greek New Testament word.
     
  8. Baptist Believer

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    Many people believe that.

    I didn't realize that "most" Christians were on that side of things. :D And yes, there are some who have emotional issues with it (especially the sense of "fairness"), but that's not the only possible reason.

    Then there are some of us who have been believers for more than 30 years and serious students of scripture for 25, who have heard and read the arguments for years but have rejected them for what we believe to be biblical reasons.

    Yes, there are unbelievers who falsely profess Christ, but this statement is getting pretty close to insinuating that those who are not 5-point Calvinists are not true Christians. That's rather offensive and condescending. Someone could make the exact same claim against 5-pointers using the same reasoning.

    While this is true, this is also another condescending assertion which might make you feel humble, but actually makes you look profoundly self-righteous in the eyes of anyone who doesn't agree with you.

    I have had very little interaction with you, so I'm not going to assume you are that way, but I would appreciate a little more grace from the "Doctrines of Grace" bunch. Tom Butler is a fine example of a gracious 5-pointer, but many 5-pointers I have known face-to-face over the years are theological bullies who resort to condescending comments and asides when their views are not affirmed instead of actually having a discussion where both the Calvinist and non-Calvinist can learn something and appreciate each other.

    Remember, 5-point Calvinists believe they are knowledgeable about the scriptures, and many truly are. However "[k]nowledge puffs up, but love builds up. The man who thinks he knows something does not yet know as he ought to know."
     
    #8 Baptist Believer, Mar 17, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2011
  9. Baptist Believer

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    Interesting. Now that you mention it, I do hear prayers like that.

    But, strangely enough, that's not how I happen to pray for the lost. I pray for God's interaction in their lives so that they will come to a place of conviction, where they can see the goodness of God and God will give them the faith to believe, if they are willing.

    I guess my prayers are tightly integrated with my theology. :praying:
     
  10. Osage Bluestem

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    I don't know all of the reasons they rail against the biblical teaching of sovereign election, but what is scary is when one of them starts to claim that God would be "evil" or "unfair" if sovereign election were true. That is a severe case of blindness and virtual blasphemy. It is those accusations against God that make it so important to understand and defend sovereign election.
     
  11. webdog

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    Curious...if you believe that one following the logical conclusion to arrive at that view is "scary"...do you also find it equally scary when your side calls our position "self salvationists" using the very same claim of taking the logical conclusion?

    I think Tom Bryant summed it up very well, and I concur with what he stated. It is also a strawman for the OP to claim we "hate" the concept of election. That is completely false. Election covers a wide range of people and circumstances. Pharaoh was elected. Judas was elected. Israel was elected. Abraham was elected. Jesus was elected.
     
    #11 webdog, Mar 17, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 17, 2011
  12. MB

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    Allow isn't hardly the word. We have no authority over God. The problem isn't that we are elect but, when, and it is always after we are In Him. We are not elect with out Him. That would be denying what scripture actually says.
    Paul wrote;

    Eph 1:4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

    Because of those two words "In HIM" we cannot be elect unless we are In Him.
    In other words we are chosen once we are in Him before the foundation of the world. We have to be in Him first.
    MB
     
  13. Earth Wind and Fire

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    Holy Cow Icon, did you ever peg it (on all points)....spot on brother.
     
  14. Baptist Believer

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    Err... :eek:

    I meant to type Tom Bryant, not Tom Butler. Tom Butler is a guy I knew many years ago.

    Sorry!!
     
  15. quantumfaith

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    :thumbs::thumbs::thumbs:
     
  16. Osage Bluestem

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    No. I find it scary when people attack the character of God by saying things like Iconoclast pointed out. When they call election evil and say things like "I could never worship a God like that" so on and so forth then that is scary. It makes me feel like they are wolves in sheeps clothing. They don't really know God at all and if they did they would hate him. I get a sick feeling in my stomach when people utter that kind of evil.
     
  17. quantumfaith

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    :applause::applause::applause:
     
  18. Earth Wind and Fire

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    Bro & like you indicated, most of this is based on you own opinion. Most of us start with Sovereignty as our primary driving point. We believe scripture instructs us & its all about giving God the Glory. If you & I have theological differences, I would hope its not on the major points of Faith IE, Gods Sovereignty, Trinity, Christ as both God & Man & Savior.....in fact Im fairly certain it's not.

    Blessings
     
  19. Earth Wind and Fire

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    Yes & thats why Ive made it a point to only worship at churches where Election is taught. And Im much happier. This board has been very effective in teaching me exactly what Iconoclast stated earlier. If you dont teach election, then see ya around.
     
  20. MB

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    Funny Sovereignty isn't found in scripture as you might define it. There is no such thing as what Calvinist define Sovereignty to be. This country is Sovereign but, that in no way implies it totally dominates every action of the people to remain so. Calvinist I've spoken with have claimed If God gives man freewill He looses His Sovereignty. This is just plain ignorance of the true definition of Sovereignty.

    From the beginning with Adam, man has had a choice to do what God wants or, not. Adam chose to eat the fruit of his own freewill, and nothing in scripture ever implies he ever lost that freewill to choose. Yet Calvinist though they might admit that Adam had freewill to choose they deny man has it now.

    For something that isn't even mentioned in scripture Calvinist sure like waving this flag as if they have something to wave.
    MB
     

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