Comments

I welcome your comments. However, I would appreciate it if those comments are relative to the post you are commenting on. As should be VERY obvious, I am not even a 1-point Calvinist. I thought I was until I took a closer look at the Perseverance of the Saints and I realized that while I believe in the Eternal Security of the Believer, I most definitely do not believe in the 5th point of Calvinism. They are not even close in their meaning.

With that being said, please accept the fact that while I do believe that man is depraved, I do not believe he is so depraved that his only response to God is rejection. I do not believe that God must do a work in a lost man’s heart before that person can even respond favorably to God’s revelation of Himself and His work of reconciliation in that person’s life. The God I serve has the ability in His sovereignty to speak to ANYONE… why He can even make the rocks cry out and praise Him and He can make dead bones come to life so He can speak to a lost man’s heart of stone and He can draw that person unto Himself. As I see the Bible, regeneration is the result of saving faith and repentance and not the reason for saving faith and repentance. I am saying this UP FRONT; I don’t need anyone trying to put words in my mouth; I don’t want anyone trying to explain to me what I believe by quoting someone else as if I said it. So, if you want your post to appear on this blog, keep it original and pertinent. If part of your post fits this, I may edit out the irrelevant part and post the relevant part.

It will not hurt my feelings if we do not agree. That is the reason I am blogging in the first place. I do not believe that God is the One who limits the atonement; I do not believe that Jesus died only for the elect or those who “would trust Him as Savior.” I believe He died for the sins of the world. I do not care about your conclusions on that matter. I am not a universalist. Since I do not believe in limited atonement as proposed in the 5 points of Calvinism, I do not believe in irresistible grace. If you do not have anything to say outside the normal mumbo jumbo dealing with Calvinism, then don’t say anything. I don’t care to hear your insults as to historicity of certain facts in the 16-1700’s; just save it. I have already seen a lot of it. We disagree on the “historical facts” that may or may not be so “historically factual.” You have your spin and I have mine. Since neither of us was around, lets just agree to disagree right off the bat. Please share thoughts out of your own head as opposed to someone elses. Don’t just cut and paste something someone else has written as if it were your comments.

Alright. I feel so much better having gotten that off my chest.

Please comment away!

Grateful to be in His Grip.

><>’

12 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by D. Holloman on December 22, 2011 at 9:45 am

    It is a joke and a disgrace how so many pastors are painting “calvinism” with a broad brush. I preach what some may call “Calvinistic” doctrine. When it come to Calvinism – you have to determine what that is – If you are basing it on the 5 points – you’ll find very few of them in the pulpit. 4 pointers? yes. 3 pointers? definitely. I have never used the word, because if I do adhere to the teachings it is not because Calvin said it, but because the Word said it. I only preach the Bible. Many of those throwing stones at calvinism are continually using the words “election” and “grace” – undeniably common themes in the Scripture. Here at CBC – where I followed a pastor or 14 years who was undeniably Armenian in theology – we have not had an issue. Our church is thriving under the truth. They are not being turned away. And it should be noted that we are a “missions” church – involving over 20% of our adult worship attendance in G.R.O.W. outreach. While hyper-calvinism can destroy a church – there is almost none of this going on in the churches. I saw a hyper-calvinist destroy my home church growing up. But his hyper-calvinism didn’t really do it – his cold attitude and lack of shepherding skills really did it. There are about 50 more destructive things going on in churches today that are worthy of your attack.

    Reply

    • Bro. Holloman,

      Thank you for your comment and for visiting. My major point is two fold. First of all, as I see it, Calvinism is Calvinism. One either accepts the 5 points or he is not Calvinist. There is a difference in being a Calvinist and Calvinistic in ones preaching or theology.

      I do not believe in the foundation of Total Depravity so I begin on a different note and my theological position moves from there. That is the basis for my work here.

      My problem with Calvinism, in addition to simply disagreeing with what it teaches, is the influence that Calvinism now has in the SBC. I simply do not agree with the direction that the institutions of the SBC are headed and those who are diligently working their way into leadership positions there.

      That is a valid argument on my part.

      now as to your comments dealing with your situation and other churches you have observed, I would agree with your conclusions and I do understand that there are other significant issues that need to be dealt with as well. My project here is to address a different theological position, which is not that different in pieces from what others have said but perhaps in the organization of thoughts and what I believe to be a coherent and Scripturally based presentation.

      So, I might suggest that much of your criticism of my blog itself is unfounded as this is not as much a railing against Calvinism as it is a proposed alternative to Calvinism. I do not criticize Calvinists as not being evangelistic nor not being missions minded. Truth is, they are even though what they say they believe differs from what many actually say. I am even grateful for that.

      I not only disagree with what Calvinism teaches, I am having a difficult time in my own head even comprehending how a person could even embrace Calvinism in the first place. That is another discussion for another day in another venue.

      I would appreciate your comments on my blog itself, should you choose to offer your comments on positions I suggest.

      May God continue to bless you and your ministry and work for Him!

      Grateful to be in His Grip!

      ><>”

      Reply

  2. Mr. Hollomon needs to understand that indeed churches are destroyed by hyper Calvinism.
    I my self belonged to a Spirit Filled Church on the lines of a Assembly of God church but we also had about 50% on the lines of Baptist that joined as well and we all got along wonderful then a small group of hyper/ new / tulip Calvinist (unknown to us) joined the church knowing the tenants of faith when they joined that the church believed and practiced moving in the gifts of the Holy Spirit, they began to try to reform the congregation very subtitle at first but bolder as time went on.
    When they were confronted with any issues they often resorted to the I’m a Southern Baptist answer which puts most people at ease.
    They stared to one by one take over the ministry positions, Sunday school,children church,music,youth meetings, at first they were a welcome sight dependable people who was willing and doing nothing that seemed odd or anti-Spirit filled.
    Then after they had gained trust they began their work (these people took years waiting inch by inch) they began telling people that true revival has no emotion ( crying in repentance,clapping hands or dancing with joy of the Lord and so on) that having any kind of emotion was not God’s Spirit but simply a over reaction of your emotion. That lifting of the hands in praise and worship was not needed, then they started attacking miracles, healings, even the worship music they one by one stopped using bass players other guitarist, piano and finally the drummer, until the music was not praise inspired.
    Then they focused on tongues and interpation, word of knowledge. Please remember this is all practiced by Spirit filled believers and the tenets of faith stated so.
    They began passing out DVD’s and CD’s by John MacArthur, R.C. Sproul And the like.
    Long story short they began to cause people to leave the church people began attending other churches compliant they even went as far as to chastise someone if they spoke in tounges.
    The sadest part is that how this got allowed,one of the ministers in the church who denied that he followed Calvinism and said he was simply moderate middle of the road christian sadly all the time must have lied , we have to believe by his actions and deceit was in deed a closet Calvinist.
    This wonderful church which for many years helped so many people in need , homeless, addicted, lost, was closed down destroyed.
    Many have been wounded some won’t go to any church now, many people who the church helped gave money to feed homeless, poor, widows so on have been left devastated.
    All because the Calvinist wanted to reform, God sees the heart and they like everyone else will answer to God for it. I hope and pray God enlightens them.
    My heart has been broken in grief that my friends whom I love could be so deceitful but I love them still.

    Reply

    • Wow… thank you for sharing your story… This is happening in a number of churches in the SBC and is going to be an even bigger problem in the next few years.

      It is indeed a sad day when preachers and Christians have to conceal their true theological identity to put down some roots and then begin a process of infiltration to indoctrinate an unsuspecting church. Reading stories like yours, and I have read others that are errily too similar, is disheartening for folks like you and disgraceful to folks that employ those tactics.

      My prayer is that you will find peace in your heart as you allow the Holy Spirit to work in you and through you in spite of this horrific experience you have been through. God is still God; He is still on His throne and He can still give you victory if you will grab hold of Him and do what He would have you do and be the person His Holy Spirit leads you to be.

      ><>”

      Reply

  3. Bob,

    Please be bold and answer this question with either a “yes” or “no” interpretation.

    If a 5 Point “Baptist” Calvinist accepts the call (and Monetary support) in a Baptist Congregation (or any Congregation) that he believes isn’t Calvinistic Church and he purposely doesn’t disclose while in the meantime he is Endoctrinating the Congregation with “TULIP” in a stealth manner behind the Pulpit, is this dishonesty, SINFUL?

    When it was discovered 2 years into his tenure that he was a Calvinist his response was “how did they find out”.

    He then attempted to initiliate a “TULIP” class to the Church Leadership which never got off the ground. With Childrens Sunday School, Christmas Programs, Easter Sunrise Services eliminated under his watch and then his “TULIP” class failing to go anywhere and his credibility in question he resigned. Rebuking many in the Congregation in his last Service.
    In Jesus
    David Mark

    Reply

  4. Hello David,

    Thanks for stopping in at Transformed Theology. I will not go so far as to say this individual’s actions were sinful because I do not know his heart nor his motives.

    I do believe it is deceptive when a pastor accepts a call as pastor of a church that he knows has a very different theological position that he himself has. Some will argue, well they did not ask or even those that do ask will get a no answer from many calvinists because they will ration, “I am not what YOU THINK I AM.”

    Here is my position; if I know my theology is different from the rest of the church I will either discuss it with them or simply decline the position. I think there is a responsibility on the part of the party that knows there are significant differences to acknowledge those differences BEFORE taking a position with a church. I do not care what those differences are.

    I have stated this on a number of occasions and I believe it is simply deceptive to take a position in a church KNOWING that one’s theological position is significantly different than the church’s. I do not believe God can bless such a ministry.

    Thanks for your question!

    ><>”

    Reply

  5. Bob,

    Thanks for responding back, your reasoning makes sense.

    What would have to be inside the heart of a 5 Point Calvinist going into a Church with a stealth agenda that compliments “TULIP” behind the pulpit, purposely not disclosing his Doctrine to the elders of the church, before it is recognized as SINFUL?

    Another words how can we detect the Sin?

    Many people were leaving the Church unable to grasp his Methodology he was letting people leave the church, failing to explain his Methodology. (maybe because of Election Theology) It seemed he was embracing the “Method” more than the “Message”

    When he decided to resign 2 years into his tenure, he still wouldn’t disclose. I’ve heard words like “Deception” and “Dishonesty” being used regarding this matter which dangerously suggests to me, that many Calvinist Pastors in the SBC are practicing Sin to unsuspecting Congregations.
    ,
    David Mark

    (He was aware the Congregation including myself didn’t even know that “TULIP” even existed, while he was attempting to Indoctrinate the Congregation)

    Reply

  6. David,

    You asked, “What would have to be inside the heart of a 5 Point Calvinist going into a Church with a stealth agenda” Since I do not know you nor the church you are referencing nor the pastor, I will answer what I believe the problem to be generically. For the most part, these guys are largely younger and have a narrow theological perspective and they actually genuinely believe they are leading the church in the RIGHT direction. Now… this is not necessarily limited to calvinist issues…

    BUT these guys coming out of college and seminary think they are doing what they need to do to return churches to a reformed perspective. The problem is, they will not reveal their agenda in advance because they know if they do, they will NOT BE HIRED. This is in and of itself problematic as I see it.

    How can you avoid the sin? Well, the answer is to know as much about the individual as possible. Google the prospective pastor’s name… given the popularity of the web today and blogging, there is a good chance an individual’s theological position can be determined by his writings in the PAST. Now, some will not write in their own names. They will comment anonymously or with a fictious name; But many will comment using their own names.

    I think it is time to consider their choice of schools. Understand the theological leanings of the school a prospective pastor has attended. Colleges are important and Seminaries are especially important. Graduates from Southern and Southeastern deserve more scrutiny. This is not just my opinion but the growing opinion of many in the SBC.

    Ask about their favorite authors. Who in the ministry do they most admire? There are a number of questions one could ask that are Scripturally related and this is where most of these guys will not waver. If you ask, “Are you a Calvinist?” they can answer no with a clear conscious because they are definitely NOT what they believe you think they are.

    But… when you ask them, In Ephesians 2:8, is faith a gift from God? They will tell you “yes.” So, If God does not give this faith to an individual, they cannot be saved?
    Explain the process of conversion… how does a person pass from death unto life… how is an individual “born again?” What about regeneration? Does God regenerate the lost person so that he CAN repent and believe and be saved OR does an individual repent and believe by faith to be regenerated and saved?

    This question determines where the individual stands on Calvinism. It is very difficult for the Calvinist to misrepresent his position because he will not lie intentionally; he can rationalize some things but he cannot rationalize special questions. This is where I would begin.

    I would also ask him if he would be willing to sign a statement saying, “If I become a Calvinist or see the need to embrace or promote Calvinism or the Doctrines of Grace, I will be willing to resign.” If an individual will not sign such a statement, there is a pretty good possibility that there is a problem on the front end that may well need to be avoided.

    ><>”

    Reply

  7. Hi David,
    Bottom line James 4:17 ” Therefore, to one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, to him it is sin.”
    How can anyone practice deceit and not sin. Anything that you have to hide and have a underhanded agenda with is wrong.

    It’s frowned upon in the world of business among non believers, how much higher standard of truth and integrity should a child of God have.

    How could he stand behind the pulpit with out disclosing his beliefs and have a “clear conscience”
    Here is one of the requirements of a elder/deacons in the church
    1Tim 3:9 holding to the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience.
    In my opinion yes he sinned I pray for him to repent and be restored, God bless

    Reply

  8. Bibletruth777

    I agree with you. Intentional deception is wrong and sinful. In the calvinist’s eye, they will say they are not the calvinist the church “thinks they are.” And, one could argue that every pastor has an “agenda of sorts” as to the direction he wants to see the church he believes God is leading him to.

    Now with that said, to KNOW that your theology is significantly different from the church that is asking you to lead and serve and NOT disclose those theological differences is in my opinion WRONG on the prospective staff member and in that case I would agree that it is sin.

    I do not believe that God will bless that kind of ministry but that is what it taking place all over the SBC. Calvinistic pastors are going into non-calvinist churches and leading them down the Doctrines of Grace highway and that is wrong. Churches need to be made aware of what is going on and they need to make sure the theological leanings of the prospective staff members is in line with the direction the church wants to be led in the immediate future.

    Thanks for leaving your comment!

    Reply

  9. Posted by Jule on July 8, 2014 at 7:47 pm

    Thank you for taking the time to approach this subject in a loving way. My husband and I are leaving a church that refuses to be called Calvinistic, They say they are “Sola Scriptura”(they won’t admit to being Calvinist but instead they say “we believe the Bible”). They use phrases like “Grace Church”, “Grace Theology”, Grace Gatherings, Grace Essentials, Grace Community….you name it, they stick “Grace” in front of it. I feel like I’m in a church with code, I hear all the time things like “It’s important that you really understand what the gospel really is”. Of course they don’t proceed to tell you what they believe the gospel really is. I can’t go to church without hearing quotes from Tim Keller, John Macarthur, John Piper, R.C. Sproul or David Platt – all in the same service. Our church also started a Seminary about 18 years ago and with this the church became more and more Calvinist – and academic. Their reason for missions is “We don’t know who the elect are”. They come across that you are more spiritual the more “Biblically” intellectual you are. I like what A.W Tozer said about the calvinist issue – “It’s makes for a lot of theologians and not many saints” (paraphrased) When I asked my Sunday School teacher if we were a calvinistic church he told me he would have to ask the pastor how calvinistic we where. I did my own research and realized that he just didn’t want to be truthful about it. I have had friends tell me that it really doesn’t matter – it shouldn’t be an issue – but I can not be under the church authority of someone I believe is preaching wrong doctrine.

    Reply

    • Jule,

      It is a sad day indeed as your story is being echoed all over the convention and it will continue to get worse because the seminaries and even Bible colleges are putting Calvinists out in alarming rates… and these guys think they are the authority and you simply do not understand the Scripture… if you do not see it the way they do you are the problem.

      I will say this DOES matter… it matters HOW a person comes to Christ. The Calvinist believes God saves a person and he THEN repents… that is not the Scriptural position and how a person comes to Christ BETTER matter.

      May God bless you and lead your family. Let me know if you are having a difficult time finding a church that is headed in the right direction.

      Bob

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: