Calvin vs. Arminius

March 3, 2008

In the Calvinist vs. Arminianist debate I lean toward Arminianism. For those of you unfamiliar with this age old debate I would simplify the debate as those who believe God first elects a man then chooses Christ (Calvinist) vs. those who believe man chooses Christ then God elects him.

I’m not going to get into this debate, especially when most people on both sides haven’t read any John Calvin or Jacobus Arminius and inherit the straw men of our side’s long held positions. Smart guys line up on both sides of the argument from Calvinists like Greg Bahnsen, Francis Schaeffer and Greg Koukl to Arminianists like C.S. Lewis, G. K. Chesterton, J.P. Moreland, William Lane Craig and Wesley.

The main reason that I reject Calvinism is that I believe that God wants all to come to be saved:

2 Peter 3: “God is not willing that any should perish, but all should come to repentance.”

If God doesn’t want any perish yet he only elects some before the foundations of the earth then he clearly didn’t want all to come to repentance. Most Calvinists give me pretty bad answers like “It’s a mystery.”

I didn’t even want to write about that…only that I’ve also been studying a similar divide between atheists. There is a camp that believes free will is just an illusion. We’re particles in motion and they operate in a strict cause-and-effect world. There is no mind, only the illusion of a conscious soul that is actually just an array of synapses firing.

In the other atheistic camp are those who might think quantum particles behave in a non-deterministic fashion. Both camps have their brilliant thinkers erecting straw men and slamming the other side, much like those of use who believe in God.

I’m starting to wonder if there’s something really deep within the mind of man that is both free and not free. That is expresses itself in these two sides of philosophy be you an atheist or a Christian.

Anyways, if you didn’t like this and you believe in some form of determinism I hope you don’t blame me for the contents of this post. This brings me to the most offensive idea to us not having true free will and that’s responsibility.

A man’s responsibility by definition is measured by his ability to perform within a normal expectation. My 6 year old is held to a higher level of responsibility than my infant because she can grasp the moral implications of her actions. Yet within the Calvinist/Materialist Determinist camps we have people incapable of doing anything but bad things. To the Calvinist, a man cannot choose to be saved by Christ until he is first elected by God (an many are not elected). Can a moral agent be blamed for rejecting Christ when he can do nothing else?

The younger my children are, the less they are held into account for their behavior. I don’t scold the 10 month old for pooping his diaper but if my 6 year old messed her pants we’d have a little talk about appropriate potty behavior…as one gains abilities, one is held to a higher standard of responsibility. Or, “to whom much is given much can be expected.” Where a person’s ability is reduced, they have less duty, less responsibility for their actions.

A man so evil that he has no ability to act one way or another should not be held responsible for actions he could not make. No free will = no responsibility. For the atheist and the Christian. They are blameless, like kids in diapers.

Advertisements

31 Responses to “Calvin vs. Arminius”

  1. robbie Says:

    this issue can divide congregations almost as quickly as a dispute about carpet color in the sanctuary.

    still, sometimes i wonder if this isn’t a false dichotomy. for example, lewis and chesterton were both steeped in the classical tradition. i’m not sure either would have necessarily accepted the argument as it is characterized (at least popularly) by those involved in the dispute. the classical writers would probably ask what kind of causality God has and what kind humans have.

    by the way, i don’t know what’s new about “new atheism” other than their evangelical streak. i think they’re worse thinkers than many of the old atheists.

  2. tennapel Says:

    Robbie, I can’t argue with any of that.

    When I say someone is Arminianist I don’t mean it in any deep sense. I’m actually using it the way Calvinist writers use it. That is, that anyone who isn’t a Calvinist is automatically an Arminianist.

    I would say that to most of us Arminius himself would appear to be far more a Reformer than just about anyone today, and that these labels are only useful for debating generalities, not specifics.

    And like “new anything” the atheists are generally a lot dumber (and more what I call an “urban fundamentalist”) than the greats of the past. I suspect in 100 years we’ll still be reading Hume and Pascal while Sam Harris will vanish along with Blue Like Jazz into the ash-heap of really poor ideas.

  3. Kirk Says:

    One ugly thing I have seen first hand from church goers of a Calvinist bent is a certain arrogance, or self pride. If there is no free will and certain people are elected, then they may have something that makes them feel superior to those they see are not elected.

  4. tennapel Says:

    Kirk, that’s harsh! I would say that not all Calvinists are Christian snobs but all Christian snobs are Calvinist.

    I don’t put it down to their election though because if you are elected solely for arbitrary reasons you can’t really have any pride in yourself.

    I think the arrogance comes from having a pretty tight argument and they are well-studied in the scriptures. What may appear to be self pride is probably just assuredness of their position. It’s an extremely binary Germanic 16th century mode of philosophy and is appealing to me on those grounds alone.

  5. vittorio Says:

    Really interesting topic. I like the one about growing older we are held to higher standards as to our behavior. My question to this is -what about the elderly? There are numerous cases where elderly people poop their pants and it is just embarassing but there are cases where some 75 year old slips his foot on the accelerator and kills a few people. He is then given a light sentence because of his age. You read about the occasional guy that is captured for a crime that he did 40 years ago and the law just says-well he is old so we are not going to punish him. I work in retail and the biggest thieves in our store are the young kids and elderly women. Maybe it is just that the elderly have learned how to play the system better:)

  6. Sean Says:

    Doug, Listen to this ten minute clip that addresses 2 Peter 3:9 pretty well: http://www.oldtruth.com/2Peter39White.mp3 .

    As for the issue of responsibility, Paul is extremely clear on this:

    Romans 9:
    ” 18So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires.

    19You will say to me then, “Why does He still find fault? For who resists His will?”

    20On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, “Why did you make me like this,” will it?

    21Or does not the potter have a right over the clay, to make from the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for common use?

    22What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction?

    23And He did so to make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory,

    24even us, whom He also called, not from among Jews only, but also from among Gentiles. ”

    I can’t even begin to think of an explanation of that passage aside from the obvious. I will add, though, that the problem of responsibility applies to your view, too, since we both believe that mankind is naturally evil.

    I actually think the Calvinist view allows for more human freedom than the Arminian view does, because if some people freely accept Christ and others freely reject him, that begs the question “What makes a person the type of person to accept or reject Christ?”. The only possible answer is that God makes them that way. If that’s the case, then God programs people to accept or reject Him and life is Just a big puppet show. It makes much more sense to me that everybody freely rejects Christ and God reveals the truth to some people, softens them, and changes them so that they may accept Him. By the way, I hardly know anything about John Calvin, I just consider myself a Calvinist in that I accept the five points.

  7. Josh Says:

    I don’t have much to add to the debate (my personal study has carried me to holding the views in a type of tension with faith that where my limited view sees contradiction, God’s eternal view does not. So not much to really add to the discussion.

    However, every time the debate comes up, I’m reminded of one of the few Christian shirts that made me laugh. On one side it said, “Arminianism: I chose this shirt.” And then on the reverse, it said, “Calvinism: This shirt chose me.” I still wish I owned that shirt.

  8. Christopher Says:

    Perhaps we do not full understand the biblical notion of “called” or “chosen”. Israel is “chosen” yet rejects Christ by and large.

    I do think your argument is a simple one and dead on. You cannot have moral accoubtability if God si the one foreordaining all your actions. It also throws a broomstick of the spokes of the “freedom” Paul speaks of se, er…freely.

    Perhaps, once resurrected we have the ultimate freedom of action without sin, bit that began with a bending of knee, asking for change, the gift of the Holy Spirit and the ongoing “work” of sanctification which has a lot of freedom within (and a lot of failure).

  9. Sean Says:

    Christopher,

    Calvinism doesn’t hold that God decides everything for us, just salvation. I’ll also say that there is a lot of room to question what’s going on. Calvinism, as far as I know, just holds that the five points of Calvinism are what actually happens. It doesn’t necessarily say how or why these things work this way.

  10. tennapel Says:

    “Calvinism doesn’t hold that God decides everything for us, just salvation.”

    And salvation isn’t everything?! Calvinism makes God an arbitrary, amoral force who creates sinners for destruction, demands they change and refuses to allow them to change.

    I think the Calvinist has to parse words to avoid abandoning their superstructure of philosophy they place on top of the bible. When the Bible says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only son.” the Calvinist will have to twist “world” into meaning, “just the elect of the world, not the world-world.”

    I smell a rat. Too much gymnastics and oddly, not enough Sola in the scriptura.

  11. Sean Says:

    “Calvinism makes God an arbitrary, amoral force who creates sinners for destruction, demands they change and refuses to allow them to change.”

    Theoretically, they could change, but they would never want to.

    “I think the Calvinist has to parse words to avoid abandoning their superstructure of philosophy they place on top of the bible.”

    Well, it’s not a philosophy that I placed on the Bible. I originally hated the idea of Calvinism.

    “. When the Bible says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only son.” the Calvinist will have to twist “world” into meaning, “just the elect of the world, not the world-world.””

    The fact that God loves people does not necessitate that he loves all people.

    “I smell a rat. Too much gymnastics and oddly, not enough Sola in the scriptura.”

    I’d be interested to hear how you explain Romans 9.

  12. TenNapel Says:

    “Theoretically, they could change, but they would never want to.”

    No, they can’t change if they are totally depraved. That’s a Calvinist word trick that changes the meaning of the word “could” into something incomprehensible…the same way that they change “free will” etc. It’s Post Modernism to change words to win an argument not the Reformation. But Calvin was French so there you go.

    If you don’t want to change you will not change. In fact, if we went through your’s and my entire life and looked at all of the bad things we do, the bad character traits in us we would find a bunch of traits we can change but don’t…and we’re both Christians.

    “The fact that God loves people does not necessitate that he loves all people.”
    So when he loves the world he meant ‘only the elect’ but wrote ‘the whole damned world’. Now Calvin adds words to the holy canon of scripture to keep from losing ground in an argument.

    Romans 9 is a great portion of scripture that MUST work in context with the rest of the Bible that clearly depicts man’s free will, God’s inability tempt or be tempted etc. It only says, “What if God were to do this?” Hypothetically, He can do what he wants, it doesn’t mean that he is indeed arbitrary in who he elects or doesn’t choose.

    We already know that God can choose whomever he wants, yet he stands at the door and knocks…and if any man opens the door Christ will come in. God doesn’t open the door. Man opens the door. If ANY man…not the arbitrary elect, but the men who choose to open the door.

  13. Sean Says:

    “No, they can’t change if they are totally depraved. That’s a Calvinist word trick that changes the meaning of the word “could” into something incomprehensible…the same way that they change “free will” etc. It’s Post Modernism to change words to win an argument not the Reformation. But Calvin was French so there you go.”

    Ok, so they “can’t” choose salvation. What I’m getting at is that their inability comes from themselves, not from God.

    “So when he loves the world he meant ‘only the elect’ but wrote ‘the whole damned world’. Now Calvin adds words to the holy canon of scripture to keep from losing ground in an argument.”

    What?

    “Romans 9 is a great portion of scripture that MUST work in context with the rest of the Bible that clearly depicts man’s free will, God’s inability tempt or be tempted etc. It only says, “What if God were to do this?” Hypothetically, He can do what he wants, it doesn’t mean that he is indeed arbitrary in who he elects or doesn’t choose.”

    No, it just says “What if God were patient towards the vessels of wrath?” The hypothetical begins and ends there. Arminianism fails to make sense of how people were saved in the Bible. When Jesus planned around the fact that 11 of his disciples would remain faithful and one would betray him, was that a lucky guess? How do you explain how Paul was concerted when God knocked him off his horse or how John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Spirit from the womb?

    Every time God gives people free choice in the Bible, the always make the wrong choice. God tells Israel to chose life then pulls Moses aside and tells him that Israel will make the wrong choice. God gave Adam and Eve free will, which naturally made them evil, because the only thing to be free from was God. This also matches the way God worked in the Old Testament much better. God chose his own people, disciplined them, and pretty much left the rest of the world to their own ways. It also explains how Jesus told parables so that his people could know what he’s saying and the rest of the world would be deaf to it.

    Most of our common conceptions about free will simply can’t be backed up with scripture. You have to admit that Calvinism is so opposed to conventional wisdom that it’s hard to imagine how so many people believe it…. Kind of like Christianity. The world tends to think that they are much more free than they are: “To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. “They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?” Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.”(John 8: 31-34).

    I’ll admit that this theology makes me uncomfortable, but it makes the most sense and I believe the Bible is very clear on it. By the way, I’d start a thread for this on the forum, but then Newmethos would get in on it, and I don’t want to argue about it THAT much.

  14. TenNapel Says:

    “Ok, so they “can’t” choose salvation. What I’m getting at is that their inability comes from themselves, not from God.”

    No, God is sovereign…that’s what we both believe. So if they have an inability they were “inabled” by God. If God is the only causative agent in salvation then He is necessarily the only causative agent in damnation. So he loves Jacob and hates Esau for no reason at all. “Love” and “hate” are interchangibly pointless and can be switched out for how God acts in this world view. Even the way you quote scripture backs this up “He loves who he loves and hates who he hates.”

    I think the reason why we all are taken back by this arbitrary casting of scripture is because God made us moral creatures, and our morality flows FROM HIM.

    “When Jesus planned around the fact that 11 of his disciples would remain faithful and one would betray him, was that a lucky guess? How do you explain how Paul was concerted when God knocked him off his horse or how John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Spirit from the womb?”

    None of this goes against Arminian theology. God is a moral person-type, and he can and does interact with man, even in the womb. And knowledge of the future is different than causing the future. Given I believe in “middle knowledge” and Calvinists generally do not I can see why it’s hard to understand how it’s fair to give the Holy Spirit to John in the womb. God knows the hearts of men, knows the hearts of men in the future, and could easily know that John was his man before the beginning of time. So it doesn’t matter if John was given the Holy Spirit pre-salvation in the womb or post salvation at 50 years old…and because I also believe we can lose our salvation, the Holy Spirit could have departed from him at any time in his life.

    “Every time God gives people free choice in the Bible, they always make the wrong choice.”

    Other than the times that they make the right choice. (but now you’ll say that the causative agency of that act was the Holy spirit so it doesn’t count, right?) By FAITH blah blah did this and that and it was counted to him as righteousness. Who was the causative agent?

    ” God chose his own people, disciplined them, and pretty much left the rest of the world to their own ways. It also explains how Jesus told parables so that his people could know what he’s saying and the rest of the world would be deaf to it.”

    Calvinism creates a very interesting God…just not the God of the Bible. “For so left the rest of the world to their own ways that he gave his only begotten son.” “For God so wanted the rest of the world to remain deaf to his will that he gave his only son.” It just sounds so much like the Biblical God!

    Sean, we can find hundreds of verses that imply men did something right and that the choice was up to them. We can also find hundreds of verses where God is trying to appeal to man to change his mind.

    “You have to admit that Calvinism is so opposed to conventional wisdom that it’s hard to imagine how so many people believe it…”

    Hardly. I think it’s easy to believe in Calvinism because I can still live in my sin and be saved because nothing is up to my actions. It’s why my favorite friends to smoke with, drink with and cuss with are all Reformers.

    ” Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. “They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?” Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.”(John 8: 31-34).”

    So Jesus was just teasing them saying, “If you hold to my teaching” knowing they were actually unable to hold to his teaching. So they could not know the truth and they could not be set free by the truth. Jesus even speaking to them would make him meaningless. He’s just going through the formality of inviting them to hold to a teaching when really, by his own hand, he intended for them to remain deaf before the foundations of the Earth. That’s one jacked up Christ.

    “I’ll admit that this theology makes me uncomfortable, but it makes the most sense and I believe the Bible is very clear on it.”

    Calvin was certainly clear on it. It’s an interesting presupposition but it’s not the canon of scripture. It’s the canon of Calvin and we have no obligation to follow.

  15. Sean Says:

    “No, God is sovereign…that’s what we both believe. So if they have an inability they were “inabled” by God. If God is the only causative agent in salvation then He is necessarily the only causative agent in damnation.”

    No, they can’t in that they don’t want to and never would want to. This is the same for the elect as well. We can both at least agree on this. This is why the debate hasn’t been about whether anybody can seek God, but whether anybody can reject him. Anybody can be saved if God leads them, but he doesn’t lead everybody. If it were up to me, he would lead everybody to him, but it’s not up to me.

    “So he loves Jacob and hates Esau for no reason at all. “Love” and “hate” are interchangibly pointless and can be switched out for how God acts in this world view.”

    No, he loves Jacob for no reason and hates Esau because he’s a sinner.

    “Even the way you quote scripture backs this up “He loves who he loves and hates who he hates.”

    Yes, that would be romans 9: 18. You have to at least admit that this would be well within God’s rights.

    “None of this goes against Arminian theology. God is a moral person-type, and he can and does interact with man, even in the womb. And knowledge of the future is different than causing the future.”

    But what if the 11 disciples rejected Christ and Judas accepted him? Your idea of God knowing how people will act is troubling because if God can know what people will do before they’re even born, that means some people’s souls are inherently better than others. I used to reject Calvinism because I thought it meant that god makes some people inherently better than others. Then I realized that’s not the Calvinist view, but it’s the logical conclusion of Arminianism.

    “and because I also believe we can lose our salvation, the Holy Spirit could have departed from him at any time in his life.”

    Well, then we’re really lucky that in never left any of the apostles.

    “Other than the times that they make the right choice. (but now you’ll say that the causative agency of that act was the Holy spirit so it doesn’t count, right?)”

    Right. That’s why I used the words “free choice”, meaning free from God. It’s not like I believe the good works of saved people aren’t genuine, though. Regenerated people know the truth and genuinely want to do good.

    “Calvinism creates a very interesting God…just not the God of the Bible.”

    … A God who apparently has less freedom than his creation.

    “Hardly. I think it’s easy to believe in Calvinism because I can still live in my sin and be saved because nothing is up to my actions. It’s why my favorite friends to smoke with, drink with and cuss with are all Reformers.”

    Well, that’s disturbing and it’s not what I believe. A regenerated person naturally wants to good. If they do fall into sin, God will discipline them and put them back on the right path. If this is not the case for a person, than they don’t have the Holy Spirit.

    “So Jesus was just teasing them saying, “If you hold to my teaching” knowing they were actually unable to hold to his teaching.”

    No, at least some of them would hold to his teachings. He’s saying that if they hold to his teachings, that proves they are saved. “First to those in Damascus, then to those in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and to the Gentiles also, I preached that they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds.”(Acts 26:20)

  16. TenNapel Says:

    “This is why the debate hasn’t been about whether anybody can seek God, but whether anybody can reject him. Anybody can be saved if God leads them, but he doesn’t lead everybody.”

    The scriptures say that “God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that whosoever…” Whosoever doesn’t mean “nobody”. Nor does it say, “The elect”. It implies that anybody can seek God.

    “No, he loves Jacob for no reason and hates Esau because he’s a sinner.”

    Great, so God’s hatred has meaning and his love has no meaning. His hatred flows from his character but his love is meaningless. That’s certainly the God of Calvin.

    “Yes, that would be romans 9: 18. You have to at least admit that this would be well within God’s rights.”

    No man can question God’s rights. That’s the whole point of those verses. The point isn’t that God IS arbitrary, it’s that he could be and fit within his rights. Luckily he doesn’t make vessels made for destruction or he would be lying by saying “Whosoever” in other parts of the scripture.

    “But what if the 11 disciples rejected Christ and Judas accepted him? Your idea of God knowing how people will act is troubling because if God can know what people will do before they’re even born, that means some people’s souls are inherently better than others. I used to reject Calvinism because I thought it meant that god makes some people inherently better than others. Then I realized that’s not the Calvinist view, but it’s the logical conclusion of Arminianism.”

    You’ve failed to demonstrate how this is a conclusion of Arminianism. God could see that Judas would betray Christ in any world that could have been created so it’s no big crime when he does so in this world. By the way, God could make some people inherently better than others, it’s no more an offense than rewarding murderers for no reason or punishing vessels made for destruction for no other reason than they could/would never choose salvation. That’s just another pagan, mechanistic, arbitrary God. But I believe God actually hates sin and likes when people obey. I think He cannot deceive and when he invites people to come that He really means for anyone to come and that the people who come are doing something good and that they are not puppets.

    In Calvinism there is no “you” and “me” there is only God moving chess pieces, hardening, softening, he’s the only moral agent. If you were a real Calvinist you wouldn’t even bother arguing with me because my heart is beyond argument, rationality, and is simply hardened. Who are you to argue with where God has chosen my position before the beginning of time? And don’t get me started on evangelism.No, they can’t in that they don’t want to and never would want to. This is the same for the elect as well. We can both at least agree on this. This is why the debate hasn’t been about whether anybody can seek God, but whether anybody can reject him. Anybody can be saved if God leads them, but he doesn’t lead everybody. If it were up to me, he would lead everybody to him, but it’s not up to me.

    “So he loves Jacob and hates Esau for no reason at all. “Love” and “hate” are interchangibly pointless and can be switched out for how God acts in this world view.”

    No, he loves Jacob for no reason and hates Esau because he’s a sinner.

    “Even the way you quote scripture backs this up “He loves who he loves and hates who he hates.”

    Yes, that would be romans 9: 18. You have to at least admit that this would be well within God’s rights.

    “None of this goes against Arminian theology. God is a moral person-type, and he can and does interact with man, even in the womb. And knowledge of the future is different than causing the future.”

    But what if the 11 disciples rejected Christ and Judas accepted him? Your idea of God knowing how people will act is troubling because if God can know what people will do before they’re even born, that means some people’s souls are inherently better than others. I used to reject Calvinism because I thought it meant that god makes some people inherently better than others. Then I realized that’s not the Calvinist view, but it’s the logical conclusion of Arminianism.

    “and because I also believe we can lose our salvation, the Holy Spirit could have departed from him at any time in his life.”

    “Well, then we’re really lucky that in never left any of the apostles.”

    …nor that the apostles didn’t leave HIm.

    “It’s not like I believe the good works of saved people aren’t genuine, though.”

    Ah, but the good works of saved people aren’t reflective of their salvation either, because bad men still perform plenty of good works and it’s not indication of regeneration from God. So you can do all of the genuine good works you want and you cannot know that you are saved. There can be no indicative fruits in Calvinism because good fruits are meaningless. A man can even strive for Christ, but in the end God can reject even those who seek him.

    In fact, Calvin-God could save a child molester in the act of child molestation, after all, the works of a man count for nothing since it’s only God’s grace that saves a man and once an active child molester is saved his sainthood is perpetuated forever, regardless of his actions. Now take the most ernest good man in the world humbly seeking God…Calvin claims that unless God is calling him his seeking isn’t really seeking. So you have a theology that can call molesting children within the family of God and a person doing the will of God as worthy of eternal torment. Bad is good and good is bad = Calvin.

    “… A God who apparently has less freedom than his creation.”

    Yes, God has far less freedom to counter his own good character than the creation. He’s far more systematic and moral than we. That’s the whole point of Romans.

    “Well, that’s disturbing and it’s not what I believe. A regenerated person naturally wants to good.”

    And that buys you exactly crap on a piece of toast. Everyone wants to do good. You, me, anyone reading this everywhere. Convict a rapist in court and his defense will be that he only wants to do good. But do you perfectly do good as a spirit filled person would? Christ said, “Be ye perfect.” So what exact percentage is the Calvinist allowed to get away with an still be called saved? How many sins a day can you commit before you have witnessed enough evidence that you are not elected? Because The Way of the Master guys said if Christians look at porn etc. that they probably aren’t in the elect. It’s implied that lust will stop on the day of salvation. Hopefully, so will lying, gossip, not loving your neighbor as yourself too. By Calvin’s standards nobody is a Christian, unless the elect are blameless.

    “If they do fall into sin, God will discipline them and put them back on the right path. If this is not the case for a person, than they don’t have the Holy Spirit.”

    I really don’t think it’s a good idea to be in the business of saying who has the holy spirit and who does not. Especially when dismiss a whole swath of people and say, “THose people over there can’t have it, but me? Yeah, I’m in.”

    “No, at least some of them would hold to his teachings. He’s saying that if they hold to his teachings, that proves they are saved. “First to those in Damascus, then to those in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and to the Gentiles also, I preached that they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds.”(Acts 26:20)”

    And I would say that based on the deeds of Christians I know that we are all still sinners. So given this reading of the scriptures, even with a decently charitable reading, we can agree that there are no Christians. Every try to actually love our neighbor as yourself? It’s one of two last commandments we are to follow and it’s impossible. I break that sin almost every moment of every day. I guess I’m not elect. And Calvin says I can’t do anything about it. Help! I’m a robot cast into this mold of destruction before the foundations of the universe! It’s like Christian Materialism. No free will.

  17. Sean Says:

    “The scriptures say that “God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that whosoever…”

    … Believes in him will have everlasting life. “Believes” does not mean “seeks on their own”. God gives people the truth and they believe in Him.

    “Great, so God’s hatred has meaning and his love has no meaning.”

    God’s love for His people is not based on anything they do, but it’s not meaningless. God loves some people because He is love and he simply chooses some people in whom to demonstrate it. “If you only love those who love you, what credit is that to you?”

    “No man can question God’s rights. That’s the whole point of those verses. The point isn’t that God IS arbitrary, it’s that he could be and fit within his rights.”

    And yet you say that it would be messed up if God did this. But anyways, when he says “what if” it clearly does not apply to the whole chapter

    Because if God can see how somebody will act before they are born, it is implied that they are made in a way that determines how they act. If some people are bound to reject God and others are bound to reject Him, then God made some people to be the type that would accept Him, and others to be the type that would reject Him. What it comes down to is that there are people who god could save, but doesn’t. Jesus says “Woe to you, Korazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes.”(Matthew 11: 21). This makes it clear that God could have led the people of Tyre and Sidon to repentance, but didn’t. I assume you’re going to say that that wasn’t the primary point he was making, but the fact still stands.

    “Ah, but the good works of saved people aren’t reflective of their salvation either, because bad men still perform plenty of good works and it’s not indication of regeneration from God.”

    That’s not what the Bible teaches and you know it. Their good works may not be unquestionable proof of regeneration, but they are certainly reflective. In fact you just argued against Calvinism by saying that implies that people don’t need to perform good works.

    “Now take the most ernest good man in the world humbly seeking God…Calvin claims that unless God is calling him his seeking isn’t really seeking.”

    Calvin would be right. Jesus says “seek and you will find”. If they don’t find, then they weren’t seeking.

  18. Sean Says:

    “Convict a rapist in court and his defense will be that he only wants to do good.”

    What?

    “How many sins a day can you commit before you have witnessed enough evidence that you are not elected? Because The Way of the Master guys said if Christians look at porn etc. that they probably aren’t in the elect.”

    Nobody is saying that Christians don’t sin. But a Christian will have a different attitude towards sin and there will be a struggle. What those guys were saying is that you can’t just look at porn(given that you know it’s a sin) without remorse or any sort of struggle.

    “I really don’t think it’s a good idea to be in the business of saying who has the holy spirit and who does not.”

    I do agree that it’s usually best not to make any calls about people, especially since we usually don’t have enough evidence. Still I feel pretty confident saying that Fred Phelps isn’t a Christian. But anyways, these considerations aren’t meant for people to judge other people, but for people to judge themselves.

    ” Especially when dismiss a whole swath of people and say, “THose people over there can’t have it, but me? Yeah, I’m in.”

    Doug, I can’t help but get the impression that you are making judgment calls on why I and other Calvinists hold this theology. I’m not going to even bother to wonder why you’re Arminian. When I read some of your arguments, though, I can’t help but feel like I’m being painted as some sort of asshole who wants people to be doomed to Hell.

  19. TenNapel Says:

    ““Believes” does not mean “seeks on their own”.”

    Actually it does. If God wanted it to say “Whosoever God made believed…” but it doesn’t say that. If any man adds a word to these scriptures…

    “If you only love those who love you, what credit is that to you?”

    If one can only love you because you make them what credit is that to anyone?! In fact, there can be no such thing as love without free will to choose or reject it.

    “What it comes down to is that there are people who god could save, but doesn’t.”

    But God doesn’t want that any should perish. Oh, I forgot, He wrote the Bible wrong and meant to say “God doesn’t wish that any of the elect should perish.” You can’t read the Bible this way. It turns the scriptures into word salad. It reeks of a conclusion in search of a support.

    “This makes it clear that God could have led the people of Tyre and Sidon to repentance, but didn’t.”

    If “believes” doesn’t mean “freely believes” then why does not being lead out of Tyre and Sidon automatically mean that some didn’t get saved?

    Your God is only just-so sovereign. He can create some babies for destruction because they deserve it then save others that don’t but he can’t choose a man because the man chose God…he CAN’T do that! Might I suggest that he can save whomever he wants to save for whatever reason he wants? You’re going to judge God for making a man elect because He looked into the future and saw the man freely choose God?

    ” If they don’t find, then they weren’t seeking.”

    And I would say that if the elect weren’t seeking they wouldn’t be elect. And if the non-elect were seeking they WOULD be chosen. Look up the parable of the two sons who work for the father’s vineyard, one does the work one does not. Who is the son? The one who does the labor. He is CHOSEN because his labor proves his son-ship.

  20. TenNapel Says:

    “But a Christian will have a different attitude towards sin and there will be a struggle. What those guys were saying is that you can’t just look at porn(given that you know it’s a sin) without remorse or any sort of struggle.”

    Way of the Master may say that you are excused if you struggle but the Bible doesn’t. The Bible says, “Be ye perfect as God is perfect.” It doesn’t say, “Struggle to love your neighbor as yourself.”

    “When I read some of your arguments, though, I can’t help but feel like I’m being painted as some sort of asshole who wants people to be doomed to Hell.”

    Not you, your doctrine. It’s what Calvinism does to good Christian men. God isn’t some sort of asshole who wants people to be doomed to hell either. Shit happens, we both know that. But I assume that God is making every effort to save every one of his creation and it is the creation that could have chosen who freely do not that warrants such harsh judgment.

  21. Sean Says:

    “Actually it does. If God wanted it to say “Whosoever God made believed…” but it doesn’t say that. If any man adds a word to these scriptures…”

    He just says “believes”. It could go either way.

    “If one can only love you because you make them what credit is that to anyone?! In fact, there can be no such thing as love without free will to choose or reject it.”

    I don’t think God completely forces anybody to believe Him, I just think He’s strong enough to convince anybody to accept Him. It just takes a lot of work. I see it like disciplining a child. You make them act a certain way and do what they don’t want for a long time and they thank you later because they can now see you were right.

    “But God doesn’t want that any should perish. Oh, I forgot, He wrote the Bible wrong and meant to say “God doesn’t wish that any of the elect should perish.” You can’t read the Bible this way. It turns the scriptures into word salad. It reeks of a conclusion in search of a support.”

    But you’re taking it out of context. the whole line is “God is patient with you, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” Since God’s will always gets done, this is an assurance to those who are reading the letter and a promise that God will save who he intends to. In Peter’s address, it is made clear that the “you” is God’s elect.

    “You’re going to judge God for making a man elect because He looked into the future and saw the man freely choose God?”

    The question for me is why do some people accept God, while others reject Him?

    “And I would say that if the elect weren’t seeking they wouldn’t be elect. And if the non-elect were seeking they WOULD be chosen. Look up the parable of the two sons who work for the father’s vineyard, one does the work one does not. Who is the son? The one who does the labor. He is CHOSEN because his labor proves his son-ship.”

    I completely agree with all of this. I just think that if somebody is seeking God(the real God), it’s because God is pressing him to do so.

    “Way of the Master may say that you are excused if you struggle but the Bible doesn’t. The Bible says, “Be ye perfect as God is perfect.” It doesn’t say, “Struggle to love your neighbor as yourself.”

    Jesus calls us to strive for perfection at all costs, but his sacrifice will cover our failures. Any real Christian means to obey Him, but our flesh gets in the way.

    “But I assume that God is making every effort to save every one of his creation and it is the creation that could have chosen who freely do not that warrants such harsh judgment.”

    God has given everybody enough knowledge that they are responsible for their actions. In order for somebody to really surrender to God, though, He has to really beat them into shape. If you look at the parable of the talents, how much fruit the workers bear is directly related to how much they are given. But it’s not like He punished a guy who wasn’t given anything.

  22. TenNapel Says:

    “He just says “believes”. It could go either way.”

    Then we shall read the Calvin-cherry-picked verses with the same level of charity. “They could go either way.” When it says ‘some vessels were made for destruction’ we shall read it either way, ‘some vessels DUE TO THEIR CHOICES were made for destruction.’

    “I don’t think God completely forces anybody to believe Him, I just think He’s strong enough to convince anybody to accept Him. It just takes a lot of work.”

    This isn’t what we were arguing about. It’s the “who” not the “how” we’re discussing. The Bible says that ‘whosoever’ is the object of his love. We both agree that he doesn’t force anybody to believe Him (you’ll part with Calvin on that one…irresistable Grace IS a sham after all) I just think he’s strong enough to convince anybody to accept and some still reject Him. You must admit that hell is a more fitting punishment for them than for those who God destined for destruction.

    “But you’re taking it out of context. the whole line is “God is patient with you, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” Since God’s will always gets done, this is an assurance to those who are reading the letter and a promise that God will save who he intends to. In Peter’s address, it is made clear that the “you” is God’s elect.”

    You CAN’T read it that way. If God’s will always gets done then it’s God’s perfect will that children are raped, murdered and made into sausage. God is not willing that any should perish, he clearly states that he wants all to repent but it doesn’t fit in with Calvin’s agenda to this twisted, incomprehensible reading is cast over what should be an easy-to-read verse. God has an ideal will and then his active will which is absolutely enforced. I believe that it’s normal for people to be saved under BOTH uses of the term “God’s will”…some are set aside before birth, some come on their own accord. The first buckle under God’s specific will the second float in under his general will…His wants and desires that aren’t always accomplished.

    “The question for me is why do some people accept God, while others reject Him?”

    That’s a proper question. Notice it’s not “why does god accept some people and reject others?” The causative agent for offering grace is God and accepting the gift is man.

    “I completely agree with all of this. I just think that if somebody is seeking God(the real God), it’s because God is pressing him to do so.”

    …and we read in the Bible that God is pressing all to do so.

    ” Any real Christian means to obey Him, but our flesh gets in the way.”

    Apparently his will is powerful enough to buckle the free will of men to keep them from resisting HIm but it’s not strong enough for man to resist furry porn.

    “God has given everybody enough knowledge that they are responsible for their actions…”

    We agree on that, my friend. Let’s leave it at that.

  23. Sean Says:

    “We agree on that, my friend. Let’s leave it at that.”

    Dang, I had a lot left to say, but if you want to end it there, that’s fine. I’ve gotten a little weary of this debate myself.

  24. TenNapel Says:

    If you have more to say I’m listening. I didn’t want to shut off the debate.

  25. Sean Says:

    “. We both agree that he doesn’t force anybody to believe Him (you’ll part with Calvin on that one…irresistable Grace IS a sham after all)”

    Maye I do part with him on that. He might actually think we’re all mindless robot. I think “irresistible grace” is a funny way to put it, but I do believe that God saves who he intends to save.

    “You CAN’T read it that way. If God’s will always gets done then it’s God’s perfect will that children are raped, murdered and made into sausage.”

    This is purely an emotional argument. It’s hard to say it, but these things are in his perfect will, the same way that it’s in His perfect will for everyone to die. The same way is was in His perfect will for his son to be crucified. God can and does use evil things that people do to accomplish his will since He will ultimately restore justice.

    “God has an ideal will and then his active will which is absolutely enforced.”

    Yeah, but it would fit perfectly in his ideal will for everybody to go to Hell.

    “That’s a proper question. Notice it’s not “why does god accept some people and reject others?” The causative agent for offering grace is God and accepting the gift is man.”

    Don’t get me wrong, I believe that people accept God. It’s genuine on both parties. I just believe that God chooses the person and then gets them to accept him. I’m not entirely sure how this works, but I’m confident that that’s what happens.

    “…and we read in the Bible that God is pressing all to do so.”

    In one verse that is in question.

    “Apparently his will is powerful enough to buckle the free will of men to keep them from resisting HIm but it’s not strong enough for man to resist furry porn.”

    “But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves”(2 Corinthians 4: 7).

  26. TenNapel Says:

    “This is purely an emotional argument. It’s hard to say it, but these things are in his perfect will, the same way that it’s in His perfect will for everyone to die. The same way is was in His perfect will for his son to be crucified. God can and does use evil things that people do to accomplish his will since He will ultimately restore justice.”

    No, it’s a Biblical argument. The God of the Bible cannot tempt, so if it’s his will for you to be tempted you will be tempted because of his perfect will. “To will” is to ascribe causative agency. God cannot do evil, and this is the evil, bizarre-god that Calvin creates.

    “Yeah, but it would fit perfectly in his ideal will for everybody to go to Hell.”

    …the Bible doesn’t say that. It says that ideally he doesn’t want any to perish. Calvin has literally made your mind call evil good and good evil. It’ll do that to a guy. Good is bad, bad is good, right is wrong, wrong is right, free is not free etc.

    “Don’t get me wrong, I believe that people accept God. It’s genuine on both parties. I just believe that God chooses the person and then gets them to accept him. I’m not entirely sure how this works, but I’m confident that that’s what happens.”

    We both agree that God chooses the saved, we part ways on his choosing the unsaved too. God so loved the world, not just the elect. His son’s blood was shed for the world, not just those who would receive limited atonement. “While we were sinners Christ died for us.” He didn’t die for us after we were saved and restored. God paid the price fully, but the gift must still be accepted by the individual. God doesn’t make the individual accept and not make others so that they reject him.

    Here’s why: the parable of the Good Samaritan tells us that God considers sins of omission as real sin. To not help when you can is to actively sin. For God to help some then not save others when he could save them doesn’t make those sinners dying of their own accord…it becomes God’s fault. Van Til claimed that they literally couldn’t respond to God…and that this was God’s doing.

    But I think God actually wants bad people to repent…not just the ones who happen to repent. Because his nature is ACTUALLY good he wants goodness to rule everywhere. Because he is ACTUALLY loving he wants all to be saved. Calvin doesn’t believe God is actually, deeply, absolutely loving, generous, desiring a repented sinner, loving the lost sheep and mourning for his return. It throws out half of the parables. It’s a broadly unBiblical position held to force the context of a binary, Germanic, 16th century reading of a few verses.

    “In one verse that is in question.”

    All verses are just one verse in question at some point.

    “But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves”(2 Corinthians 4: 7).”

    I don’t understand the context of your use of this verse.

  27. Sean Says:

    “No, it’s a Biblical argument. The God of the Bible cannot tempt, so if it’s his will for you to be tempted you will be tempted because of his perfect will. “To will” is to ascribe causative agency. God cannot do evil, and this is the evil, bizarre-god that Calvin creates.”

    God never directly does evil, but he does use the vil that other people do for his will. Like I said, it was in God’s perfect will for Jesus to be crucified, for Judas to betray him etc. One part of the Bible, I don’t remember where, even says that God will send evil spirits to some people.

    “…the Bible doesn’t say that. It says that ideally he doesn’t want any to perish. Calvin has literally made your mind call evil good and good evil. It’ll do that to a guy. Good is bad, bad is good, right is wrong, wrong is right, free is not free etc.”

    I’m saying that since we all deserve to go to Hell, it could fit within God’s moral ideals for none to be saved.

    “Here’s why: the parable of the Good Samaritan tells us that God considers sins of omission as real sin. To not help when you can is to actively sin. For God to help some then not save others when he could save them doesn’t make those sinners dying of their own accord…it becomes God’s fault.”

    I don’t see how. God is being fair to those people. The only people he is not being fair to are those whom he does save.

    “Because his nature is ACTUALLY good he wants goodness to rule everywhere.”

    But it is good for bad people to go to Hell.

    “Because he is ACTUALLY loving he wants all to be saved. Calvin doesn’t believe God is actually, deeply, absolutely loving, generous, desiring a repented sinner, loving the lost sheep and mourning for his return. ”

    I think that it is infinitely loving for God to love one sinner, so I don’t think changing the numbers can add to or subtract from it.

    “I don’t understand the context of your use of this verse.”

    He gives us the power to overcome all sins, but he doesn’t make us perfect so that when we do demonstrate God’s power, our struggles with the flesh prove that the power comes from God and not from us.

  28. Voice of Reason? Says:

    Sorry to distrub the flow of your arguements with this interjection but I can’t help but wondering if there are any others reading this, what their impressions might be.
    First, I am not an intellectual. You both appear to follow each others complex train of thought, are both obviously well read whereas I am a much more simple man who is not so interested in history and thought about determining what is right in many (what I see as) trivial regards such as these. Ask yourself, how does your belief affect how you act? Does it please God, yourself, or both? It seems to me that you are both destructively proud in your assertiveness. Not that you do not have some level of respect for each other, but that both are trying to win an arguement for which there can be no winner. Perhaps my lack of intellectual capacity is by divine design, perhaps my choices have made me who I am (I have made some poor ones) but hope you’ll eventually agree to disagree and admit that your pride is really the only thing that is keeping you from doing that. I believe God, through His Son reveals different mysteries to different men in different amounts for reasons we will only understand beyond our earthly grave. I think pride may be the worst sin of all – think of how many other destructive behaviors it spawns. And ultimately it is only the static election of our will, to focus on ourselves, that separates us from blessings He has to offer us in this life and thereafter if we realize our position and motives behind our assertions.

  29. tennapel Says:

    “God never directly does evil, but he does use the vil that other people do for his will.”

    But the only being who can end evil is God and he doesn’t do it so he causes evil by the only way that it can exist. The un-elected man can do nothing from birth but evil, that’s God’s fault…and that’s how we know Calvinism is wrong. God cannot temp nor can he leave an un-elected being in the cold so that all he can do is be tempted and fall. That’s the same thing as tempting. When the Bible says, “God cannot tempt” it isn’t just saying that He tricks his way around the laws of morality and logic, it means that His nature actually prevents him from participating in tempting men to sin. As in, He is against it. As in He is in a fight against sin. As in it is not in his will that we should suffer, die, fall etc.

    ” Like I said, it was in God’s perfect will for Jesus to be crucified, for Judas to betray him etc.”

    Jesus didn’t get crucified because he was betrayed by Judas. Christ tells us that he lays down his life of his own accord. God SENT his son. It wasn’t a sin that JEsus was crucified. It was GOOD.

    “I’m saying that since we all deserve to go to Hell, it could fit within God’s moral ideals for none to be saved.”

    …or all.

    “I don’t see how. God is being fair to those people. The only people he is not being fair to are those whom he does save.”

    So I’m being fair to the beggar on the side of the road that I walk past? He’s there of his own accord. It’s not my fault. It would be unfair to give him a taco. God implies that there is something sinful about passing those you could help. It’s in his nature to love a neighbor as Himself. It’s not just some new virtue he made up for us. Calvin knows nothing of this virtue because it counters his invented struct. he should try again, and so should you.

    “But it is good for bad people to go to Hell.”

    …including the elect. So it can’t be inherently good for bad people to go to hell since God rescues some and makes it good to go to heaven. Further, an extension of this philosophy would make you ice-cold to the suffering of any non-elect man since it’s good for them to suffer…to go to hell. You rejoice with God at the unsaved Jews burning in the Holocaust. The unsaved atheist who is tortured is actually involved in what your invented god calls a good thing.

    Go back to the Bible. Invent another God. How about one that is actually loving and actually wants all sinners to repent…not because it’s arbitrary but because it’s ACTUALLY GOOD to repent. Try again.

    “I think that it is infinitely loving for God to love one sinner, so I don’t think changing the numbers can add to or subtract from it.”

    I don’t think Calvin’s God even loves one sinner. There is no individual, only a God who creates one puppet to pour his arbitrary favor upon. It’s a mechanistic, arbitrary, pagan god disconnected from true morality, virtues or goodness.

    “He gives us the power to overcome all sins, but he doesn’t make us perfect so that when we do demonstrate God’s power, our struggles with the flesh prove that the power comes from God and not from us.”

    Like I said, ‘there is no us.” in this world view. God makes the man, God puppets some to do one thing and neglects the others to forcibly do another. God basically saves little versions of himself, there is no “you” to speak of.

  30. Sean Says:

    “The un-elected man can do nothing from birth but evil, that’s God’s fault…and that’s how we know Calvinism is wrong. ”

    Don’t we both believe in total depravity? It’s not God’s fault, it’s their fault. He made them free and that naturally led to evil. This goes for the elect and the un-elect. The God you’re describing is so opposed to evil that he would never create man as that would leave to evil. Have you ever read the Old Testament? God commands his people to wipe out whole cities: men, women, and children. It freaks me out and I wrestle with it, but I can at least acknowledge that it’s fair.

    “It wasn’t a sin that JEsus was crucified. It was GOOD.”

    But the people who crucified him still sinned. And it was in God’s perfect will for them to do so.

    “…or all.”

    Yes, and both are hypothetical.

    “So I’m being fair to the beggar on the side of the road that I walk past? He’s there of his own accord. It’s not my fault. It would be unfair to give him a taco. God implies that there is something sinful about passing those you could help.”

    You’re not God, he never sinned against you, and you didn’t create him. It’s a completely different situation.

    “It’s in his nature to love a neighbor as Himself. It’s not just some new virtue he made up for us.”

    People aren’t God’s neighbors.

    “Further, an extension of this philosophy would make you ice-cold to the suffering of any non-elect man since it’s good for them to suffer…to go to hell. You rejoice with God at the unsaved Jews burning in the Holocaust. The unsaved atheist who is tortured is actually involved in what your invented god calls a good thing.”

    No, because these atrocities are committed at the hands of people who have no right to commit them.

    “Like I said, ‘there is no us.” in this world view. God makes the man, God puppets some to do one thing and neglects the others to forcibly do another. God basically saves little versions of himself, there is no “you” to speak of.”

    I don’t see it that way. We’re no puppets, because we’re evil at the start like the rest of them. He just changes us and shows us the truth. I think we are very real and there to witness the whole thing. Go argue with Greg Koukl about this. He’s smarter then me. I don’t want this discussion to go on forever, so you can have the last word and that will be it for now.

  31. tennapel Says:

    “Don’t we both believe in total depravity?”

    I believe in depravity. Nowhere does it prevent man’s free will. It also isn’t such depravity that man can’t do something good, it’s just not salvific good…other than his free decision to come to God. We both know that no man is righteous, but it’s Calvin that extended that to include man being so depraved that he can’t even choose a God who is offering salvation. I think it’s silly and reverses the clear reading of about 99% of the Bible…including the OT.

    ” It freaks me out and I wrestle with it, but I can at least acknowledge that it’s fair.”

    It’s only fair if this God knew that these people wouldn’t turn…and because he could see the future he would know. I keep telling you that God has a PURPOSE for loving and hating and Calvin’s philosophy wants God to remain arbitrary, to not actually act upon good, evil or man’s repentence.

    “But the people who crucified him still sinned. And it was in God’s perfect will for them to do so.”

    It was GOd’s perfect will to send his son. Jesus said that no man takes his life. Now AFTER God sent his son good and bad people wanted him crucified. I want him crucified and it’s not out of sin.

    “You’re not God, he never sinned against you, and you didn’t create him. It’s a completely different situation.”

    That’s relativism. I believe God is ACTUALLY good. That he ACTUALLY hates sin. That he thinks it is an absolute good to love your neighbor…not just some academic thing. I believe God’s goodness comes from his actual nature. Not “true for me but not for you”.

    “People aren’t God’s neighbors.”

    So now I love the beggar on the road more than God loves his creation? That’s a weird philosophy, Sean.

    “No, because these atrocities are committed at the hands of people who have no right to commit them.”

    …committed against people destined for destruction. That’s why you have no mercy on the children God grinds up in the OT. It’s an actual sin to murder, not just because the person has no right but because the victim has a right to being treated with humanity.

    Not only did Pharoah not have a right to own other men, but those men had an expectation created by God to be free. You seem to really be into one side of justice and completely forget about the victim. The Bible is clear about a mourning and crying out of the victim of injustice.

    “I don’t see it that way. We’re no puppets, because we’re evil at the start like the rest of them. He just changes us and shows us the truth. I think we are very real and there to witness the whole thing. Go argue with Greg Koukl about this. He’s smarter then me. I don’t want this discussion to go on forever, so you can have the last word and that will be it for now.”

    I argue with Koukl on this every time we meet. I’ll let him argue with J.P, William Lane Craig and CS Lewis.


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: