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2007.02.25

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volfan007

peter,

amen, again, bro.! yesterday, i pleaded for lost souls to come to Jesus....to respond to the call of the Lord. and, i sincerely made that plea with everyone in the sanctuary, and felt that i could make that plea to everyone, because of what you're saying in your post.


david

selahV

OKAY Peter: I'm gonna try this one more time. I've already tried to post this comment several times.
I am one of the "whosoever will" folks. Halleluhah! I know that may be emotional to say, but if I don't speak, wouldn't the stones cry out?
Also, is this passage one that could be used as a basis for the altar call? No?--what are the scriptures from which to base Southern Baptist's so-called "custom"? I read on some google search that it was a "custom" not held to by Spurgeon and others. But I think Finney? introduced the altar call around 1820-30. Given that Southern Baptist didn't form a Convention till 1845, can we deduct that SB always had altar calls? Even Calvinist Southern Baptists?
Thanks...selahV

peter

David,

Thanks as always for commenting, my Brother. And, I am glad you could offer the Gospel without the least reservation that there may be some there who were not of "the elect." Unfortunately, for some of the more rigid Calvinists, they do not seem to possess such freedom.

Grace. With that, I am...

peter

peter

SelahV,

Glad you finally got thru. And, I would be comfortable saying that this particular passage is one that could be referenced for issuing open invitations.

As for the SBC "custom" of altar calls and Finney's contribution, I too have read such. However, Separate Baptists in mid-18th century were offering aggressive 'altar calls," long before either Finney or Spurgeon.

As I see it, SelahV, the issue for Calvinists is not the "altar call" per se. Rather, it is the reservation many Calvinists possess that Jesus did not die for the human race but only for the elect.

That being so, it stands easier to see precisely why some would not desire to "openly call all to Christ." Frankly, it's not true, given their theological premises.

And, poor, poor Finney gets blamed for everything from dying families to drug culture to postmodernism. He remains the whipping post for many rigid Calvinists.

Peace to you, SelahV. With that, I am...

Peter

Timotheos

Rigid Calvinists, flaccid Arminians, poor Finneyites...what is this world coming to? ;>)

selahV

Timotheos: An End. C'est la vie

Keith Schooley

The Calvinist point of view affirms that "Whosoever will may come," but then simply denies that anyone ever will without having been regenerated first. The system remains intact--the assertion is not implausible logically--but at the expense of making meaningless tautologies out of verses like this.

Timotheos

I think, Keith, you might be more accurate - not to mention charitable - to say that many Calvinists may genuinely affirm what Scripture says at any given point, while not losing sight of the composite portrait made up of said points, and the interdependent relationship any given point sustains to the whole. "Meaningless tautologies" misses the point entirely - there are no redundancies in observing the difference between an action and its cause(s), or between an invitation and its reception.

Rather than holding to the speculative notion that the english phrase "whosoever will" stands in complete linguistic, semantic independence from its context, or that it expresses ultimacy in the function of the human will, some Calvinists might think Scripture teaches that the human will functions contingently, and that ultimacy belongs exclusively to the One who "works all things according to the counsel of his will," which includes, of course, ALL things created and all things redeemed.

Grace and peace,

Timotheos

volfan007

i sure do wish that tim would speak english so that i could understand him.

david

Keith Schooley

It was not my intent to be uncharitable. Perhaps I should have said that the Calvinist explanation of such verses appears to reduce them to meaningless tautologies _to_me_. Just as you doubtless believe that non-Calvinists reduce passages on election to meaninglessness ("God elects those who elect themselves, eh?"), so it appears to someone from my point of view that Calvinists "explain away" verses like this, rather than dealing with them as they stand.

Timotheos

Thanks Keith - I don't really think you are uncharitable. The comment was just the slightest bit tongue-in-cheek.

I hadn't heard the "God elects those..." phrase before, though I have heard the unfortunate, "I'm elected because I selected!" phrase-that-pays on more than one occasion.

For myself, I love the Revelation invitation - it is full of hope and warmth and joy, and ought to be gladly heeded by all who hear the Spirit and the bride. What a sweet command, ay?

David: don't worry about my obscurantist language, it's just a bit of muttering which you would no doubt find unpersuasive.

Timotheos

Keith Schooley

Timotheos wrote:

"What a sweet command, ay?"

Yep. Darn near irresistible. ;-)

Keith

Timotheos

Keith wrote:

"Darn near irresistible."

Heh heh...unless yer too durn thirsty.

volfan007

tim,

obstu...what? language? that aint speaking in tongues, is it?

my bro., may the Lord bless you today with much grace. dont forget to put the cookies down low where the kids can reach them in your speaking and preaching.

david

Richard Coords

Whosoever-will among the elect...

Of course, this is the eternal "elect" in the Father, which is bogus.

It requires a preemptive placement in Christ prior to be sealed in Christ, which is bogus.

I can just hear John the Baptist now: "The Lamb of God who taketh away the sin of the elect."

However, I love the phrase: I'm elected because I selected." Well, we're chosen in Christ, aren't we? Or are we chosen INTO Christ, as our Calvinist brothers would insist, i.e. chosen TO BE in Christ. Calvinism is a mess.

Richard Coords

One other thing, on what reasonable basis should anyone conclude the "works all things" be made to mean "causes all things"? Laurance Vance pointed out that for Calvinists who wish to render "works" to mean "causes", need to go back and learn basic English.

When you read the Bible through the lens of Hard Deterministic glasses, what will result will merely be a reflection of the glasses. Solution? Get rid of those glasses.

Richard Coords

I have one story for you. In my former Calvinist church, the Pastor stated, "And some people believe in whosoever will!" Immediately, I blurted out, "Amen!" (That went over like a turd in a punch bowl.) Then the Pastor responded, "But no, we were CHOSEN!" And of course, the rest of the congregation belted out, "Amen!"

peter

Richard,

Thanks for dropping by. And, also for your work "balancing out" the Calvinist/nonCalvinist dialog.

Personally I have not read Vance's work and perhaps I will soon. He has received mixed reviews even from friendly critics.

At any rate, check out the link below to Liver-n-onions, T.J. Pennock's site, a church planter in AZ. Though he appears to have a score to settle with Calvinism :), his posts are actually very good.

Grace. With that, I am...

Peter

http://liver-and-onions.blogspot.com/index.html

Mary

Peter, we are currently reading Laurance Vance's "The Other Side of Calvinism." While it provides a very thorough exposition of what is wrong with Calvinist interpretation and speculations, we have some criticism of it. In tone, it is very harsh and tends to paint Calvinists as either fools or treacherous heretics. In short, we find the information helpful, but would never cite to him directly, because the work is mean-spirited. In terms of unraveling and revealing the true nature of Calvinism, however, we have not found another volume equal to it.

Mary

Hey Volfan, is the cookies on a bottom shelf a J Vernon McGee reference?

peter

Mary,

I am glad you find Vance's book helpful. I've yet to read it and probably will sometime in the near future.

I appreciate also your discernment about his not-so-irenic-tone. For me, dialog must possess that spirit or it fails to fully honor our Lord no matter how truthful our words may be.

I trust your Lord's Day tomorrow will be filled with grace. With that, I am...

Peter

Richard Coords

Mary,

Do you have a quote from Vance that you can cite as an example of his mean-spiritedness?

When if comes to mean-spiritedness, John Calvin is king. Just read his book entitled, Concerning the Eternal Predestination of God, in which he calls his opponents "dogs", "cyclops", ect. I read "Debating Calvinism," by James White, nad his tone is way over the top. Here is just one example:

http://www.examiningcalvinism.com/files/RollCall/White.html

This subject can drive out passionate emotions, but clearly, James White serves as the perfect example of how NOT to behave as a Christian. When he mentioned my website on his radio program, he kept going on and on about everything being "sad." If you take Ad Hominem away from James White, he has nothing.

volfan007

mary,

yes, that was a j. vernon mcgee reference. i grew up listening to dr. mcgee on the radio, due to my mother. God used dr. mcgee in my life greatly.

david

peter

Richard,

I do not think Mary would disagree nor I about many Calvinists--including White--whose tone does not reflect the most honorable spirit in dialogue. Nevertheless, that being so gives no comfort to nonCalvinists to return fire.

We are called, no matter the tactics of others, to display a Christ-like attitude in our disagreements with one another. And, I am confident you hold to this as well.

Peace to you. With that, I am...

Peter

Richard Coords

Peter,

I try. I remember Paul's words of making an allowance for the faults of others, and I also try to follow Paul's word of remaining humble and gentle, rather than being combative, as quoted in the link above.

However...I have been bad at times, in this regard. A well respected Christian lady once saw me being a bit, heavy-handed, with a Baptismal Regenerationist, and since then, I've tried to be more Christ-like in m theological discussions, but I mess up sometimes :)

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