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Author Topic: Reformed Theology:Where I agree and where I don't  (Read 3245 times)

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Grace_Accepted

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Reformed Theology:Where I agree and where I don't
« on: April 25, 2019, 07:34:35 am »
Tiptoe Through The TULIP
What is reformed theology?  It is a theology derived from the views of John Calvin; born Jehan Cauvin in 1509. At its most basic it relies on 5 tenets of faith remembered by the mnemonic device TULIP.  This device stands for:

Total Depravity (also known as Total Inability and Original Sin)
Unconditional Election
Limited Atonement (also known as Particular Atonement)
Irresistible Grace
Perseverance of the Saints (also known as Once Saved Always Saved)

The bible ratifies some of these tenets such as Total Depravity, our inability to know God when we are fallen flesh. (1 Cor 2:14-16)

Unconditional election (Romans 5:8)

Terrible TULIP?
But where it appears to run aground is when it comes to Irresistible grace.  This doctrine teaches that when God calls his elect into salvation, they cannot resist. God offers to all people the gospel message. This is called the external call. But to the elect, God extends an internal call and it cannot be resisted. This call is by the Holy Spirit who works in the hearts and minds of the elect to bring them to repentance and regeneration whereby they willingly and freely come to God.

Wobbly Flowers

Now this is where things begin to get wobbly because even though “God offers to all people the Gospel message” He only reprograms the elect to accept it while the rest He leaves in the un enabled state, not being able to understand the things of God.

Thus he “limits His atonement” to only the elect.  I realize that some would object to my use of “reprogrammed” but if it is irresistible after all, you have no choice.

Regardless of how you phrase it.  God chooses who will be saved and whether by default (predestination) or by direct choice (double predestination) the non elected are damned without remedy because they cannot understand spiritual things from God.

So when you boil it down, mankind has no choices, no free-will.  You are either regenerated by the Holy Spirit or you are not and there is nothing you can do about it.

Searching for Coherence

As a “biblist” my search is constantly looking for the internal coherence of the bible, its functional adequacy and external correspondence.  This means I can’t toss out or ignore parts of the bible that cut across my narrative.  I must adjust my understanding to accommodate them.  This has lead me to understand that God’s purpose in creating man was to have free-will beings that of their free-will choose to serve Him.  Furthermore, the fall of man and the resulting flood of sin was an inevitable result of God’s granting free-will to angles and men.

It was NOT a surprise to God and the plan to deal with it was always in place so that God could have His free-will creation in a voluntary relationship with him.

So far, I think a large majority of Reformed theology is with me, but where we differ is that, what I read in the bible indicates that God protected that free-will throughout this entire process.  Never did he make His grace irresistible.  But he does light every man that comes into this world so that they might make an informed decision concerning His offer of eternal life.

I would appreciate critiques of this general overview but please, let us allow God’s grace attend our debate and let’s only address a point at a time.  Start with the point you deem most important.  Often you can take down an argument by exposing a faulty nexus and I don’t have large blocks of time to try to argue everything at once.

I like debate but am a bit weary of bickering and I do not feel this is a salvational issue since at the core of it.  We both believe it is the substitution of Jesus life for ours that saves us.  Lastly, understand that I have no condemnation for reformed theology.  John Piper and Matt Chandler are two of my favorite bible expositors and they are both reformed theologians.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2019, 09:46:21 pm by patrick jane »

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bernard pyron

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Re: Reformed Theology:Where I agree and where I don't
« Reply #1 on: April 25, 2019, 09:52:23 am »
Find out who created Five Point Calvinism, and whether the theology fits New Testament scripture or not.

I have been interested in some translation issues, especially involving William Tyndale's break with Catholic tradition on the translation of ekklesia  by John Wyclife in his 1382 Old English translation of Jerome's Latin Vulgate.   

In the Wyclife 1382 English Bible, translated from Latin, ekklesia was translated as  chirche, pronounced "Kirkee."

Tyndale in 1526  broke with the Catholic use of chirche and instead   used "congregation" consistently for ekklesia except for Acts 14: 13 and Acts 19: 37 where he used chirche, meaning a pagan place of worship.

But then Theodore Beza in 1556 in a translation returned to the Catholic  use of church for ekklesia. William Whittingham's Testament of 1557 followed Beza's usage of church. The first edition of the Geneva Bible as a revision of the Tyndale New Testament, translated ekklesia as church. The Geneva Bible followed Beza in translating ekklesia consistently as church instead of as congregation as Tyndale had done. The consistent translation of ekklesia as Church in the English Bibles apparently dates back to a Calvinist, Theodore Beza.

Theodore Beza is one follower of John Calvin, whose name got into history as a  successor to Calvin himself.  There are  other followers of Calvin, who contributed to Calvinism after the death of Calvin.  John Calvin did not live a long life.  Calvin's dates are  July 10,  1509  to  May 27, 1564 - he died at 55.

https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/what-we-believe-about-the-five-points-of-calvinism

"The official Calvinistic response came from the Synod of Dort which was held November 13, 1618, to May 9, 1619, to consider the Five Articles. There were eighty-four members and eighteen secular commissioners. The Synod wrote what has come to be known as the Canons of Dort. These are still part of the church confession of the Reformed Church in America and the Christian Reformed Church. They state the Five Points of Calvinism in response to the Five Articles of the Arminian Remonstrants."

See: https://verticallivingministries.com/tag/what-scriptures-support-the-5-points-of-calvinism/

This site quotes New Testament scripture which can be seen to support the five points of the Canons of Dort.   This can help a person to decide whether to look to the theology alone or also at the New Testament scriptures which can be seen to support the five points.


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patrick jane

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Thanks bernard.

patrick jane

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