Caffeinated Calvinists

I updated my blogroll with a link to the Caffeinated Calvinists website. This is a site devoted to other sites that write about Calvinism, such as mine. It’s an excellent resource for those of you who want to understand more about Calvinism, what Calvinists believe and why it won’t go away! I will answer that last one: it won’t go away because it is Biblical. The Bible drives our Calvinism, not the other way around.

For instance, our strong convictions about election, God’s sovereign hand in our salvation, Christ’s atoning work and the Spirit’s sealing power come from the Scripture in sections like Ephesians 1:3-14:

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, 5 having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.
7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace 8 which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence, 9 having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself, 10 that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both[a] which are in heaven and which are on earth—in Him. 11 In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will, 12 that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory.
13 In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14 who[b] is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.

There is a lot more to that verse, and a lot more verses that support our positions on Calvinism than this one, but I’m not into writing about it right now. You get the idea.

I do want to point out that it is not the Five-points of Calvinism that drive Calvinism. It is God’s sovereignty in all things, especially our salvation that drives our position. The Five Points were merely a reaction the to the Five Points of Armenianism that put the burden of salvation on man. In other words, like so many in our day, the Armenians believed that salvation was completely up to man’s free will, and God had to sit back and wring His holy Hands in the hope that men would choose to believe. We find this hard to believe given that the Bible refers so little to man’s free anything, especially his will, which is bound by our wicked hearts. The Bible does refer to man’s heart, and there is not much good found there.

The point is that we salvation completely of God’s doing. Yes, men are responsible, but not capable until God moves in us, gives us a new heart so that we can believe in Christ and be saved. God moves first, we just respond to His grace. Otherwise, we could boast. I think Paul had something to say to that in Ephesians 2.

If you want to know more, head on over to the Caffeinated Calvinists and check it out. I’m heading down the hall to get some more caffeine.

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11 thoughts on “Caffeinated Calvinists

  1. I’d strongly encourage reading the Canons of Dordt to gain the full defense of Biblical truth with regard to that.
    Also the Belgic Confession by Guido de Bres. Quite stirring to read about his life, imprisonment and death. He was reared into Catholicism by his mother, later converted to Protestant faith. He was strongly influenced by Calvin’s writings. He wrote the Belgic confession and threw it over a castle wall where the governor of the Netherlands stayed in order to bring the confession to the attention of the Spanish government. It was to point out that the Calvinists weren’t a radical Anabaptist sectarian movement, but instead wanted a reformation in the biblical sense of the Roman Catholic Church.

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    • Hi Bev,
      Yes, all are definitely worth the read! Maybe we should start a campaign to throw them on the front doors of all the churches in the county as well. 🙂
      Blessings

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  2. Hey, I write about Calvinism quite a bit. My blog isn’t there. What’s up with that? I think it’s a grand conspiracy to silence me!! Unfair!! Okay, maybe it’s the fact that I’m not well known at all, but that’s not nearly as much fun as a conspiracy theory.

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    • Colin,
      If you really believe in free will, as I’m assuming you would, then you would freely choose to say “Patooey” and it would all be on your shoulders. After all, Calvinism is not sovereign, but points to the sovereignty of God in all things. We would say you were predestined to say “Patooey!” 🙂

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      • Sorry but I just have a hard time believing while God does everything in His power to bring some to Him that He is inasmuch the same way doing everything in His power to keep others in the dark. God is soveriegn Amen to that but there are two wills. My will and Gods will. This is why we pray for Gods not our will to be done on earth as it is in heaven. We must align our heart and will with His by submission to Him.

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  3. Colin,
    That is not what Calvinist believe. We believe that God is sovereign in that He works towards saving the elect, by opening their eyes to the truth and giving them hearts that will believe in Christ to be saved. The non-elect are left to their own free wills (as you put it), and they get to freely choose to reject Christ on their own. God chooses whom He shows mercy to, not us. Even the elect cannot choose to believe apart from God’s grace, mercy and causing rebirth in our lives. See Romans 9, Ephesians 2:8-10, etc and Ephesians 1:3-14 for a better understanding of it.

    BTW, as you put it, God is not sovereign if He has to bend His will to ours…

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    • I think I read romans 9 a little differently. I see it as corporate rather than individual election. Paul here is broadening the scope of Gods calling, not narrowing it. I don’t mean to say God bends His will. What I meant to say is His will is a constant we must become aligned with.

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  4. Yes, Romans 9 deals with the corporate level because it deals with the individuals who represent those corporate entities. So it deals with both. There are those who are either of Israel, or not. Two people groups, those who are of God’s people and those who are not. That includes individuals and deals on that level as well. You cannot have a corporate level of election, without individual election.

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