Daily Archives: May 3, 2009
No matter how many times I say it, Rey keeps repeating the same error over and over again. So I have decided to write a post that keeps everything pure and simple, so that I (hopefully) won’t have to say this again.
Calvinism does not teach that sovereignty is the same as micromanagement. Calvinism does not teach that God is a Hollywood screenwriter who has written a screenplay that becomes life as we know it. Calvinism does not teach any of that stuff! Yet Rey continues to repeat these same errors over and over again.
What Calvinism does teach is that God has an eternal decree, from the beginning of time, that everything that would happen does happen. This can be either positive or negative, or some shade between.
If this decree is positive, it means that God declares what is going to happen, he purposes it and does it.
If the decree is negative, it means that God allows something to happen. Orthodox Calvinism views evil this way: it isn’t something that God positively does, it is something that he negatively allows for his own unsearchable purpose.
Hyper-Calvinism, on the other hand, does view evil as something that God creates in the life of the sinner. I’m no hyper-Calvinist.
There are many gradations in the action of foreordaining. It can be a positive thing that God purposes and does, or it can be a negative thing that God allows. It may also fall in-between the two extremes in a way that we don’t understand this side of eternity. God either purposefully does something, or purposefully allows something to happen. Either way, he is foreordaining it in a sense, and not micromanaging every detail.
So, please, Rey, stop repeating the error that I’m teaching that God micromanages everything. In fact, I have explicitly written against it in this latest series of posts sparring with you.
Rey, otherwise known as Beowulf2k8, has leveled more criticism my way. He has two posts, here and here, that criticize my own Reformed view of the Bible. The second was meant as pure sarcasm, and as such I will not be addressing it. The first one I will address after I clarify a few things.
First, Rey did not adequately respond to Genesis 50:20. He said that Joseph was not an oracle of God, so therefore it represents his erroneous opinion of what God is doing in his life. I countered with the fact that Joseph was an oracle of God, evidenced by the fact that he interpreted dreams, and therefore his opinion in this matter would carry some weight. This statement of God meaning someone’s free will evil for the good of all is inconvenient to Rey’s position that God doesn’t influence human free will.
Second, Rey did not respond to the litany of verses that show God does influence human free will. Among others that can be cited, I specifically cited the following verses (emphasis mine):
- Exodus 4:21: And the LORD said to Moses, “When you go back to Egypt, see that you do before Pharaoh all the miracles that I have put in your power. But I will harden his heart, so that he will not let the people go.”
- Joshua 11:20: For it was the LORD’s doing to harden their hearts that they should come against Israel in battle, in order that they should be devoted to destruction and should receive no mercy but be destroyed, just as the LORD commanded Moses.
- Isaiah 63:17: O LORD, why do you make us wander from your ways
and harden our heart, so that we fear you not? Return for the sake of your servants, the tribes of your heritage.
- Romans 9:18: So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he hardens whomever he wills.
Third, Rey does not contend with the litany of verses cited in favor of God making the decision for Christ for us (emphasis mine):
- John 1:9-13: The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of a human decision nor of the will of man, but of God.
- 1Pet. 1:3: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead
- John 6:44: “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day.
- John 6:61-65: Aware that his disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, “Does this offend you? What if you see the Son of Man ascend to where he was before! The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life. Yet there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus had known from the beginning which of them did not believe and who would betray him. He went on to say, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has enabled him.”
- Acts 2:45-47: And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.
- Acts 16:13-14: And on the Sabbath day we went outside the gate to the riverside, where we supposed there was a place of prayer, and we sat down and spoke to the women who had come together. One who heard us was a woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a seller of purple goods, who was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was said by Paul.
Fourth, Rey does nothing with my philosophical discourse on God’s foreordination. Rey merely continues to perpetuate the error that Calvinism teaches that God reduces human beings to puppets. He does this with no evidence from any Calvinist document that allegedly teaches this.