Friday, June 18, 2010

This Week in Calvinism - June 18, 2010

  • Jon J. Cardwell is on part 3 in a series of posts entitled "God's Purpose in Election."

  • Yet another rant against Calvinism.

  • Introducing C. G. Spurgeon.

  • Tim Challies reviews the book Burning Down the Shack by James De Young.

  • It's nice to know that Calvinists aren't as annoying or confusing as Barthians.

  • William Birch doesn't like the Calvinist claim that Arminians believe man has an inherent free will. He writes, "Arminius notes that the will is not free to choose Christ, but must be freed from its bondage to sin by God's power and grace in order for one to trust in Him for salvation." However, according to Arminian theology, the final decision whether to follow Christ or not is up to the individual. So are all men free to make that decision? If so, when exactly is the will freed to make it? If, on the other hand, all men aren't free to make that decision, then how is that any different from Calvinism?

  • You can watch the live webcast of Ligonier Ministries' 2010 National Conference here.

2 comments:

William Watson Birch said...

That's a good question, for my part. This is answered slightly different by Arminians, but I agree with Arminius and the Remonstrants, in that, when the gospel is presented to someone (Rom. 1:16-17), then the Spirit of God is at work in that individual, convicting him or her of sin, righteousness and judgment (John 16:8-11). Only during and after this moment is someone freed from his or her bondage to sin and enabled to trust in Christ. I wouldn't say that "all men" are freed by the Spirit without the preaching of the gospel and/or the convicting work of the Spirit (many Arminians disagree with me).

This differs from Calvinism by the decree of Unconditional Election. In the Classical Arminian model, the Spirit's convicting work is sufficient but not efficacious; though God has always known His people, and only those whom He has foreknown will actually be saved.

Granted, the Calvinist will disagree, and that is fine. But the point of my post, and let's not stray from that, was that Arminius and the Remonstrants did not teach an "inherent free will" theory -- Charles Finney did. And the failure to distinguish between the two is unacceptable.

John8com said...

Good round-up Lee. Thanks for the links!

Brad

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