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Reformed. Christianity. Evangelism. Modern Culture.
1. Are all men both saint and sinner free agents? If so, is not the sinner as free as the saint?
2. If a sinner cannot come to Christ of his own free will, is he a free agent?
3. If all sinners possess will and power to come to Christ, why did Christ say (John 6:44), “No man can come unto Me except the Father which hath sent Me draw him?”
4. Has any man the power to refuse to come to Christ when the Father draws him?
5. Are those characters free agents that shall do wickedly and none of them shall understand? (Dan. 12:10) …Read More!
Thanks to one of my Face book friends (Mark Todhunter) for the quote of the week….
If the Arminians are right, instead of “It is finished” Jesus should have said “So far so good…now it is up to them” – Dan Phillips
Excerpt from The Legacy of Charles Finney:
[Charles] Finney is particularly esteemed among the leaders of the Christian Right and the Christian Left, and his imprint can be seen in movements that appear to be diverse, but in reality are merely heirs to Finney’s legacy. From the Vineyard movement and the church growth movement to the political and social crusades, televangelism, and the Promise-Keepers movement, as a former Wheaton College president rather glowingly cheered, “Finney lives on!”
That is because Finney’s moralistic impulse envisioned a church that was in large measure an agency of personal and social reform rather than the institution in which the means of grace, Word and Sacrament, are made available to believers who then take the Gospel to the world…
To demonstrate the debt of modern evangelicalism to Finney, we must first notice his theological departures. From these departures, Finney became the father of the antecedents to some of today’s greatest challenges within the evangelical churches themselves; namely, the church growth movement, Pentecostalism and political revivalism.
Reacting against the pervasive Calvinism of the Great Awakening, the successors of that great movement of God’s Spirit turned from God to humans, from the preaching of objective content (namely, Christ and him crucified) to the emphasis on getting a person to “make a decision.”
Charles Finney (1792-1875) ministered in the wake of the “Second Awakening,” as it has been called. A Presbyterian lawyer, Finney one day experienced “a mighty baptism of the Holy Ghost” which “like a wave of electricity going through and through me…seemed to come in waves of liquid love.” The next morning, he informed his first client of the day, “I have a retainer from the Lord Jesus Christ to plead his cause and I cannot plead yours.” Refusing to attend Princeton Seminary (or any seminary, for that matter), Finney began conducting revivals in upstate New York. One of his most popular sermons was, “Sinners Bound to Change Their Own Hearts.”… Read More
Excerpted from anarticle by Colin Maxwell
An attempt to clear up some of the misunderstandings about Calvinism. This is not meant to be a detailed doctrinal defense of Calvinism’s Doctrines Of Grace.
1) Calvinism and Hyper-Calvinism are poles apart. The terms are not to be used synonymously. A Hyper-Calvinist is not just a zealous Calvinist. We both consider each other to be “mongrel” Calvinists. No man will actually call himself a Hyper-Calvinist.
2) Yes Calvinists are split into several factions. But then so are many such doctrinal schools e.g. Dispensationalism, Church Government, Worship – do we sing only the Psalms or use hymns? Which hymns? Do we use music? Which music? Which set of texts do we base our Bible translation on? Is it the Textus Receptus that is important or the (KJV) AV? or both? etc.
3) The term free will needs to be defined to avoid confusion. Calvinists will either affirm it or deny it, depending on what they think you mean. This sometimes leads to charges of contradictions. Consult the standard Calvinist Confessions e.g. the Westminster Confession of Faith Chapter 9 for a defining of terms. But There’s More
Mark Cahill recently went nuclear. Leaving behind him a mushroom cloud of raised eyebrows and a hushed silence. His article decrying The Doctrines of Grace titled Calvinism and the Bible has been a cause of concern in many evangelical circles. Colin Maxwell graciously put together this wholesome rebuttal as a gentle answer.
1) Where he is obviously ignorant about what Calvinism teaches e.g. he seems to be unaware that Calvinism believes that man has a will that chooses and is responsible for its actions.
2) Where he attributes things to Calvinism which it does not hold. e.g. that the call to repent in Matthew 4:17 is addressed only to the elect.
3) In his salvic application of his disagreements – if Calvinism is Galatians 1 ground (as he claims at the end of his article) then he has just damned in hell many of the greatest Christians who ever lived, including many of the translators of the KJV, Spurgeon, Whitefield, Jonathan Edwards etc., As I point out, if he is wrong (the “if” of argument, not of doubt) then he damns more people than Calvinism was ever supposed to do. (Although Calvinism only damns those who will not believe and no one else.) There’s More