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Steve Grose

G'day Peter,
As a Calvinist may I say : good thoughts! And I would appreciate even receiving just the tape on anti calvinism or non calvinism or whatever..
Jerry Vines is one of the finest preachers and expositors that I have ever heard (and I am VERY grateful for his series on Matthew and on Ephesians, and his books on Mark and 1 Corinthians! I think I've modified all of them to preach over the years!
Friend, though we may not agree on the 5 points, that's not a hill to divide over, and anything by brother Vines is well worthwhile (except his paid site.. the sermons cost too much ;) I have noticed that although he does take a different view on election / predestination to me and Mohler ;) most times his expositions are so close to calvinistic it doesn't matter... I guess that's because he tries to be true to the text!
May his tribe increase!



wise words and great thoughts once again.


Robin Foster


I am four pointish and I don't feel threatened. Thanks for your post.

peter lumpkins


Thanks for the stop. I agree about Dr. Vines preaching. I read his books many years ago and benefited greatly.

I am unsure about his sermons available on his website. Perhaps you are thinking of SermonCity or other. Dr. Vines does possess a fee for being a participating member of his ministry/site, though it is very modest.

Unlike blogs which so many times are free, websites like his are much more costly to maintain. The fee presumably recoups his cost to remain on the air.

As always, Steve, glad you participate. With that, I am...


peter lumpkins

David & Robin,

Thanks for your reads. And, Robin, I am cool with you being a "4-pter" though David now will want to ask you a few questions :^)

Also, it's refreshing when Calvinists are not so darn sensitive upon meeting someone who actually believes firmly in nonCalvinism!


With that, I am...



Hey Peter! Does this mean that the majority of us non-Calvinist in the SBC can start complaining about "God's" money being used to support Al Mohler and Southern Seminary?

Steve Grose

:) No Mary, the beauty of the SBC is that it allows representation within the variety of historic views represented at the commencement of the SBC.
You're stuck with brother Al, whether you like it or not, and that too is too your benefit :)

Joe Stewart

I'm wading through Vines in Job. It's great stuff.

Steve Grose

You've got Vines on Job?
Over here you cannot buy any Vines any Rogers or basically any Southern Baptist preacher.
The bookshops are all owned by Vineyard or Pentecostals. Some Pentecostals took out the "license" on lifeway stuff so we actually CAN'T Buy Lifeway materials except through them, and they don't have much stock anyway.. and it costs more and takes longer than if we walked to the USA from here to buy it!
I guess that might be one reason why we are bein swamped with charismania here.

peter lumpkins

Dear Mary,

Hey, girl! Good to hear from you. And, I trust all is well.

By the way, don't pay any attention to our Brother Steve. His Aussiness sometimes comes bleeding through :^)

More seriously, I think you have a good point. Calvinists for years had no popular "reps" in the spot, so to speak. Now, they surely have plenty, enough not to pout about. Steve's point about positive diversity is a needed corrective for us all.

One positive thing I've sensed about Dr. Mohler is, though he is unapologetically a five-point Calvinist, his public commentaries, especially engaging cultural issues, agree or disagree, he represents a broad but conservative community of the Christian Church, unlike some Calvinist brothers I've encountered who seems to inject "Predestination & Election" into almost every issue.
Not our good brothers here, of course, and especially Steve.

Grace, Mary. And know always you are welcome. With that, I am...




amen again. i have no problem with evangelistic calvinists, but i do have problems with extreme calvinists. those guys are on an evangelistic mission to convert everyone to five points.




I like in your post where you describe non-Calvinists vs. anti-Calvinists.

Many times when I discuss this subject with my Calvinist friends, especially my carpool friend, I am portrayed as anti instead on non.

It doesn`t make a difference to me if one is Calvinist or not, but it usually seems more serious to them.

Michael Westmoreland-White

I like the call not to jump down folks throats if we disagree. Peter, you have been consistent in your work to reconcile factions. Good on you.

But don't be overly impressed with "big pulpit preachers." That doesn't make Jerry Vines a better expositor than you or anyone else. This is a major flaw within SBC life--to equate big churches, TV ministries, fame, etc. with wisdom, orthodoxy, God's blessing, whatever. There is no necessary connection.

I, for one, would grade Jerry Vines as a C+ expositor and a B+ in pulpit delivery. That, too, doesn't say everything. He may be an able administrator or pastoral caregiver or have a special gift for evangelism, etc. (Look how many people Billy Graham has been used by God to reach, though he's not that exciting a preacher.)

All I'm saying, Peter, is separate out the issues of Calvinism vs. semi or non-Calvinism; exegesis; and large/influential pulpits. And don't put yourself down.


As a Calvinsts, I say that I hear what you are saying Peter about the non / anti argument. However, it seems to me that the issue you (and David) are missing is that some Calvinists (i.e. Ascol and myself) become aggressive towards someone that may be viewed as simply taking the non-Calvinist position (like you say Vines did) as opposed to a strict anti-Calvinist position only because they make a mess of describing accurately what Calvinism is. See Vines' bus analogy for one example among the many he makes (in my view). This is what is frustrating to many Calvinists. Not simply that they don't believe as I / we do.


Hello Peter,

There is just one itsy-bitsy issue with your post. You say that you cannot speak for Tom Ascol. Then, you go on a build a "what if" scenario and in a sense do speak for Tom or what you think he would do. How is this helpful given the current situation?

If Convention money was inappropriately spent on mailing these cd's then regardless of what you think Tom would do, Convention money would still be inappropriately spent. And this makes up what, about one-third of this post? Only to "prove" something that didn't really happen?

Also, can you give me an example of how Jerry Vines accurately portrayed Calvinism?

I'm tired and it's bedtime and I hope my reply is somewhat cogent.

In conclusion I am....
Mark ;-)

Ps. I still hope to share a cup o' java one day, neighbor. Okay, maybe not the same cup...

peter lumpkins


Glad you dropped by, my Brother. As for "guessing" what Dr. Ascol "may" have said, John Mark, I thought I made that clear. Honestly, that was more style in composing the post than anything.

And, I don't think that it's really a worthy criticism pointing out a "stylish" point. Unless, of course, you desire to demonstrate what a sorry writer I happen to be.

As for the one example...Are you kidding? Heck I can't even recall my own examples from last week! I have not listened to that message in going on a year. I did listen twice to it before I penned the little rebuttal to Dr. Ascol last year when he originally posted about it.

As for convention money being spent for it, I haven't the least problem--no more than I have a problem with convention money funding Dr. Nettles at SBTS, who advocates a view out of step with over 90% of SBs.

Grace, JohnMark. Yes, Java sometime. With that, I am...




Would you please tell me how spending Convention money to mail cd's is the same as paying an actual person (Tom Nettles) a salary for his work?

How would you personally feel if cd's advocating Calvinism and showing the danger of Arminianism or non-Calvinism, per your example above, were sent out statewide in similar fashion as in said topic?

With that I am petered out...
Mark ;)

peter lumpkins


The last I checked, salaries were expenses the same as teaching materials.

Even more relevant, Mark, Professor Nettles took swipes at all Georgia Baptists last year in a letter to The Christian Index. I'm quite sure you are aware of it.

He wrote: "Confessional infidelity began when non-Calvinist pastors took positions in confessionally Calvinistic churches...it seems to me that the burden of evidence shows that the non-Calvinist has departed from the faith of Georgia Baptists." (12/6/06).

"Confessional infidelity" and "departing from the [Georgia Baptist] faith" do not qualify as irenic descriptions of nonCalvinists were one to ask me, Mark. What you you think?

My question is, who is this phillistine that he can sit comfortably in Lousiville becoming fat on Georgia money and yet spank us for "departing from the [Baptist] faith and causing "confessional infidelity"?

And, I actually wrote a rebuttal letter which, I can only suppose, The Index filed it in the nearest trash can. So much for conspiracies against Calvinism :^).

My point is, Mark, Dr. Nettles used our money all the while spanking our theological be-hinees.

Though I'm sure, upon reading it, my Calvinist brothers were not red-hot in anger that a Calvinist professor dare insult the entire Georgia Baptist Convention. "Hip, Hip, Hurray" stands a more probable response.

Nor has there been a public outcry toward Lifeway who recently crammed the popular Calvinist, John MacAuthur, down millions of SBs' throats with our Adult SS material. No, in-deedy. My guess is, Hip-Hip Hurray, once again.

Does Dr. Ascol even know of this? Somebody needs to tell him. Calvinists are getting plenty of air-time, I assure you.

Grace, Mark. With that, I am...




I just lost my post and the wife needs my attention. So I'll try to summarize.

I don't believe you've answered my question, but just assumed your answer. Dr. Nettles' article was his view in response to and contra Dr. Price. So two different views were presented unlike the mailing of Dr. Vines' sermons. It's not the same.

Also, just because you didn't like what Nettles' said doesn't make his statements untrue.

I will share in your martyred article by the Index though. I wrote a response to Nelson Price and got an email confirming it would be published. It wasn't. Cheers!

You also didn't answer the question that was in similar vein to that which you asked Dr. Ascol.

"How would you personally feel if cd's advocating Calvinism and showing the danger of Arminianism or non-Calvinism, per your example above, were sent out statewide in similar fashion as in said topic?"

Even though you didn't ask I will answer using your MacArthur example. Taking your word that the same thing happened by Lifeway's SS material I would not be in favor of using convention money this way. Though I used to use Lifeway's SS material and I never say Calvinism shoved down anyone's throat. I never saw Calvinism period for that matter. So I'd really like to see what you are complaining about in the SS material.

Whatever opinion you or I have on this matter won't answer the question of whether it was right or wrong to send Vines' material. The real matter would have to be settled by those in charge in FL. They'd have to first determine if the money was properly used in this regard. I have no idea.

Thanks for the chat,

peter lumpkins


First, reread my first line, Mark. I did answer your question.

Second, it wouldn't matter if 10 articles had been written by Ga. Baptists. Dr. Nettles is paid by OUR seminary, funded in part by Ga Baptists. Nelson Price is not paid by CP money.

Third, you took much too literally the Jn. MacArthur ill. Frankly, it did not bother me squat. Indeed it was probably better than the current stuff. But IT WAS John MacAuthur, a bona fide Calvinist we agree, I presume.

Fourth, I thought I made it clear, but perhaps I did not: I don't care what either Florida or Georgia sends out as a free gift to Pastors for their use. I got some silly things when I was a Pastor. I do not see it changing in the future.

The bottom line is this, Mark: Founders apparently will NEVER accept, as legitimate, a critique of the DoG by nonCalvinists. No matter how irenic, it is identified as an attack...always skewed...always inaccurate...always misrepresented...always Anti-Calvinist.

My response is--though you did not ask either:^)--Calvinists themselves then should cease their endless critiques of nonCalvinists, for, it could be, in nonCalvinists' view, identified as an attack...always skewed...always inaccurate...always misrepresented...always Anti-nonCalvinist.

Have a great evening. With that, I am...


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