If you have read my blog for any length of time, you know that I am a Calvinist when it comes to my theological understanding of Scripture. Some who may read this may immediately ask if it is good to take any position theology. The answer is certainly in the affirmative, for while it would be nice to live in an idealistic world with believer who “just loved Jesus,” that is not very helpful. We all have theological position whether we know them or not. So it is better to understand our positions in light of Scripture and let the Bible refine those position over the course of time.
Now before you paint me into a corner by saying that I became a Calvinist first, then opened the Bible, please know that I was actually accused of being a Calvinist before I knew what a Calvinist was. The year: 1995. I was in my first pastorate at Trinity Baptist Church in Dallas (on Cole St.), when I was accused of preaching “Dallas” doctrine. That was shorthand for doctrine that came out of Dallas Theological Seminary. Although, I wasn’t preaching Dallas doctrine at all. I was preaching the text of Ephesians and John.
It would be years later that a man named Peter Magnuson also accused me of being a Calvinist while I was pastor of Trinity. He said he wanted to help me with my work there, but couldn’t because I kept talking about things like “election.” Hence, I was a Calvinist since the Bible spoke those things and I did too. It would only be a few years later that I would realize there was a theological name for those things I preached upon and taught. It was and is Calvinism. The best way to understand Calvinism is that we see God sovereign in all aspects of live, especially those areas concerning our salvation and that we are saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. Even our faith is a gift from God. Our role in our salvation? We are sinners. God’s role? He saves us.
Since I do write on these topics, here are some of earlier postings to the effect:
- The Pope and Arminians Hold Hands on Free Will
- Understanding Calvinism — a helpful video with James White.
- The New Calvinism
- He shall Guide You into All Truth
- William Tyndale’s Concern — Tyndale was instrumental in translating the Bible for the common man, but feared what we face today would happen: that those who have no training or understanding of the Word would begin to interpret it for themselves.
- The Church is OUR Mother — Michael Horton on the Church with my thoughts included.
- Law and Gospel — An article commenting on Michael Horton’s book, A Better Way, and the need to understand the Word of God as both Law and Gospel.
- Answering an Arminian — Part One… Limited Atonement.
- Answering an Arminian — Part Two on Election and Hell
- Jimmy Swaggert Gives Typical Misrepresentation of Calvinism — apparently Arminians are not taught what we actually believe.
- The Prayer of an Arminian — showing that Arminians are never consistent with their theology once they begin to pray.
- Dallas Theological Seminary: Great at Teaching Moralism and Bashing Calvin — my response to another DTS grad bashing Calvin from the pulpit. It’s so tiring… they do not require any of their students to actually read Calvin’s Institutes of Christian Religion, but they teach all of them to bash John Calvin.
- Not Willing That Any Should Perish — Refuting the claim by Arminians that 2 Peter 3:9 refutes election.
- Ephesians 1 is Not for Us? — From a conversation in which a man decided that Ephesians 1 wasn’t written for us, only the original audience, so that predestination was no longer an issue.