Unsettled Christianity

Gloria Dei homo vivens – St Irenaeus
July 9th, 2015 by Joel Watts

Calvinism Cheat Sheet (CTP)

English: Tulipa 'Page Polka'

I hate this flower.

This is for my CTP class. Also, I don’t like Calvinism. From here:

  1. Hyper-Calvinism: Beliefs: God is the author of sin and man has no responsibility before God. The Gospel should only preached to the elect. i.e. duty faith. and anti-missionary. Believes in the five points is a prerequisite for true salvation, also known as Neo-Gnostic Calvinism. Proponents: Joseph Hussey John Skepp and some English primitive Baptists.
  2. Ultra High Calvinism: Beliefs: That the elect are in some sense eternally justified. A denial of: The Well– Meant Offer; Common Grace; and God having any love for the non-elect. Proponents: John Gill, some ministers in the Protestant Reformed Church of America
  3. High Calvinism: Beliefs: That God in no sense desires to save the reprobate, Most deny the Well-Meant Offer. Supralapsarian viewing God’s decrees. All hold to limited atonement. Most believe in particular grace and see the atonement as sufficient only for the elect. Proponents: Theodore Beza, Gordon Clark, Arthur Pink
  4. Moderate Calvinism: Beliefs: That God does in some sense desires to save the reprobate, Infralapsarian in viewing God’s decrees. Affirms Common Grace.Proponents: John Calvin (some argue that he was a High-Calvinist), John Murray, RL Dabney
  5. Low Calvinism: Beliefs: That Christ died for all in a legal sense, so one can speak of Christ dying for the non-elect. That God has two distinct wills. Affirms the Well-Meant Offer and Common Grace, Proponents: Amyraldrians , RT Kendal
  6. Lutheranism: Beliefs: That Calvinist over emphasize God Sovereignty over man’s responsibility. That Christ died for all in legal sense, that some are predestined on to life but none are predestined onto death. That the sacraments are means of grace regardless of one’s faith. Proponents: Martin Luther, Philipp Melanchthon, Rod Rosenbladt
  7. American Baptist: Beliefs: That God has given man libertarian freedom, that God’s knowledge of future is based on His foreknowledge. That Christ died for all and desires all to be saved. Once a persons believes the gospel, he is eternally secure. Rejects Calvinism, some would even call it heretical. Proponents: Jerry Falwell, Adrian Rogers
  8. Arminianism Beliefs: That God has given man libertarian freedom, that God’s knowledge of future is solely based on His foreknowledge. That Christ died for all and desires all to be saved. A person can fall from the state of grace i.e. lose ones salvation, since it is our free will that chooses Christ at conversion.Proponents: Jacob Arminius, John Wesley some Methodists

From here:

  •  SUPRALAPSARIANISM is the view that God, contemplating man as yet unfallen, chose some to receive eternal life and rejected all others.
  • INFRALAPSARIANISM (also known sometimes as “sublapsarianism”) suggests that God’s decree to permit the fall logically preceded His decree of election. So when God chose the elect and passed over the non-elect, He was contemplating them all as fallen creatures.

What does TULIP mean?1

Total Depravity (also known as Total Inability and Original Sin)
Unconditional Election
Limited Atonement (also known as Particular Atonement)
Irresistible Grace
Perseverance of the Saints (also known as Once Saved Always Saved)

Some Wesleyan views on the TULIP. Wesley’s theology is acronymed as ACURA.

John Calvin on Romans 9.13:

As it is written, Jacob I loved, etc. He confirms, by a still stronger testimony, how much the heavenly answer, given to Rebecca, availed to his present purpose, that is, that the spiritual condition of both was intimated by the dominion of Jacob and servitude of Esau, and also that Jacob obtained this favor through the kindness of God, and not through his own merit. Then this testimony of the prophet shows the reason why the Lord conferred on Jacob the primogeniture: and it is taken from the first chapter of Malachi, where the Lord, reproaching the Jews for their ingratitude, mentions his former kindness to them, — “I have loved you,” he says; and then he refers to the origin of his love, — “Was not Esau the brother of Jacob?” as though he said, — “What privilege had he, that I should prefer him to his brother? None whatever. It was indeed an equal right, except that by the law of nature the younger ought to have served the elder; I yet chose the one, and rejected the other; and I was thus led by my mercy alone, and by no worthiness as to works. I therefore chose you for my people, that I might show the same kindness to the seed of Jacob; but I rejected the Edomites, the progeny of Esau. Ye are then so much the worse, inasmuch as the remembrance of so great a favor cannot stimulate you to adore my majesty.” Now, though earthly blessings are there recorded, which God had conferred on the Israelites, it is not yet right to view them but as symbols of his benevolence: for where the wrath of God is, there death follows; but where his love is, there is life.

John Wesley on Romans 9.13:

With a peculiar love; that is, the Israelites, the posterity of Jacob. And I have, comparatively, hated Esau – That is, the Edomites, the posterity of Esau. But observe, 1. This does not relate to the person of Jacob or Esau 2. Nor does it relate to the eternal state either of them or their posterity. Thus far the apostle has been proving his proposition, namely, that the exclusion of a great part of the seed of Abraham, yea, and of Isaac, from the special promises of God, was so far from being impossible, that, according to the scriptures themselves, it had actually happened. He now introduces and refutes an objection.

I refuse to post stuff by R.J. Rushdoony, but you can read some quotes here.

Something on the “Protestant work ethic” developed from Calvinism.

They of course are attracted to the “Protestant/Calvinist Work Ethic” because according to it their new wealth and power over others are justified by God’s ordaining it because they appear to be of the “elect,”  of God’s chosen few!

And here as well. Here and Here. And here.

 

  1. Like the Wesleyan Quadrilateral, the TULIP is pulled from Calvin rather than originating with him.
Joel Watts
Watts holds a MA in Theological Studies from United Theological Seminary. He is currently a Ph.D. student at the University of the Free State, analyzing Paul’s model of atonement in Galatians, as well as seeking an MA in Clinical Mental Health at Adams State University. He is the author of Mimetic Criticism of the Gospel of Mark: Introduction and Commentary (Wipf and Stock, 2013), a co-editor and contributor to From Fear to Faith: Stories of Hitting Spiritual Walls (Energion, 2013), and Praying in God's Theater, Meditations on the Book of Revelation (Wipf and Stock, 2014).

Comments

5 Responses to “Calvinism Cheat Sheet (CTP)”
  1. This answer is restricted to a few of the “types” of Calvinists described in the post:

    For those unfamiliar with some of the numbered points above, John Gill’s eternal justification is restricted to the inalterability of God’s calling. Gill reasons that if God calls one before the foundation of the world and He is immutable, this immutability is attached to the calling. One may dispute whether calls or not one from before the foundation of the world and twist many scriptures to deny such, but I hope we all agree that God is immutable thus immutable in His word and will. Kuyper has his own version of the misnomer “eternal justification”.

    Although many have tried to place Calvinists in one or more of the above categories, there are mixtures of one and the other. I don’t believe in common Grace as Grace is theologically defined in the New Testament; in the N.T. Grace is what God dispenses through Jesus Christ to those whom he saves, and not a distribution of favors such as “giving the rain to the righteous and unrighteous”. I call “common providence” what many call “common Grace”; I think that theologically the term Grace should be kept exclusively as a salvific term. I also reject the “free or well meant offer”, but I do believe the “general call” since the call is to save the elect but also condemnation to the reprobate for the Gospel is foolishness for those who perish, but for US (yes there are us and them in the Bible) it is the power of God.. I do believe that God dispenses His providence upon all His creation.

    I am also a Calvinist who believes in preaching the Gospel, except that I don’t include altar calls (there is no altar…), hum three verses of Just as I am, and calling people from the balconies, the bleachers, and, please, not the “sinner’s prayer” as if there is any other kind of prayer (I used to do this before better than anyone I know!). I believe the same way God elected the way he would save his own, he also elected the way whereby his own would hear the Good News, although there may be examples in the Bible of people who were saved without a preacher. But in general, “…how can they hear unless they preach?…”

    As far as “supra or infra”, I had inner bouts with both notions before. I would keep the “supra” but both camps bottle up God in some kind of time and I believe that God is timeless. Everything is and has been before Him. I reject the “infra” because its logical conclusion is that God was somehow taken by surprise… that goes against his omnipresence and omniscience.

    After years of non-denominational ministry, non-cessationist, pre-trib beliefs, in 93, in a snowed-out day in Grantsville MD, in the mountains of beautiful Western Maryland, where I served as a pastor, God found me alone, away from my family at about 6:30 in the morning in my home, gave me a Damascus experience, (there are many details on that…) and I understood that my salvation was by grace, without any cooperation on my part, which was against everything I learned in the Methodist College in Brazil (there you go… I confess this great sin publicly) and that I learned in my Baptist church in my childhood and teenager years (I confess that one as well…), my charismatic ministry school (now I really am reaching the unpardonable stage…) and began to study Calvin and Grace… Then I became a full blown Calvinist, so when the internet became popular, I began to write under the name Grace Ambassador (since my ministry is called The Embassy of Grace, name which I took from the Cave of Adullam 1 Sam 22:1) and there has been no one who can convince me out of the most precious teachings of Calvin. This is, I recognize, an unsolicited part of my testimony, but I thought it was warranted so you know under what “covering” I made my comments above.

    In all I believe that many people have a blurry view of Calvin exactly because of Calvinists, especially the neo-calvinists over the Internet who use the term “Calvinism” because it gives them a touch is “rebellion” against the mess that “free-willers” have brought to the Evangelical (a term I consider null and void) community.

    I look upon everyone as an elect of God and preach to everyone who is breathing and a few that are not… So, I am too Calvinist to the Charismatics and too Charismatic for the Calvinists… The Charismatic part comes from my natural way of presenting myself in public speaking. Nowadays if you are mildly “interesting” in Christian gatherings, you’re labeled a Charismatic, but only when they already labeled me everything else but “angel”.

    (I edited a few portions for clarification and others because my keyboard (or my near senility) is typing whatever letter they “feel like”).

  2. There is a story that my mother told that I have not otherwise verified that my paternal great-grandmother married into a “hard shell Baptist” family of Altmans in far South Georgia and that she was “put out” of the church for reading the Bible to her children. I suppose that that might somehow upset the “decrees.” I DO know that my grandfather became a Southern Baptist preacher and was pretty Arminian (altar call and all) in his approach to Salvation.

  3. Keith Caldwell says

    With all of this in mind it would appear we United Methodists are not protestant but actually American Anglicans.

  4. Milton Almeida says

    More clarification: the acrostic TULIP is not Calvin’s authorship. It is from Calvinists. I love it! It is a great way to explain our faith.
    Also, Romans 9, mentioned above, is only a microcosm of the doctrine of election. We can find the doctrine of election throughout the Bible.
    The Doctrine of Election (a.k.a. predestination) is not exclusive of Calvinism.
    Romans 9 “hate” (the responsibility on this comment is mine) is taken literally as “hate” based upon the other scriptures in which God declares he hates certain people and things. The term “same lump” is used under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit to demonstrate that God is speaking about the same people, except that he creates one for honor and another for dishonor.
    This way of viewing the text is no reason at all for anyone who is secure of his/her salvation to fret, worry, or make fun of such doctrine. (yes, God saves women too), can also be sure of his/her election (he be sure of his and her be sure of hers).
    Limited Atonement (L) is not “limited” in power but in scope; and the promise of Jesus in John 6:37 is the promise of preservation, a word I prefer over “perseverance”. (P)
    In all, to condense Calvin’s teachings purely to Romans 9 is unfair to Calvinism. Having said that, not surprisingly I take his position on the text.
    In my Methodist Bible College in Brazil in the early 70’s the professors used to tell me that Calvin is Wesley’s devil. When I turned Calvinist I realized that it is only so among the followers of both. I can go to a single’s dance party in a Methodist Church and attend service in a Calvinist church and “not be able to tell the difference!” 😉 😉 😉

  5. Canadian says

    Here’s a fine Calvinism cheat sheet:
    http://www.ronpaulforums.com/showthread.php?444031-Why-I-Stopped-Being-a-Calvinist-Calvinism-presents-a-dehistoricized-Bible

    I repented of my Calvinism when I discovered what it does to a sound Christology.

    Romans 9 has nothing to do with individual election to heaven or hell, but is covenantal, and it’s theme is played out through chapter 11 where those who were cut off, hardened, fallen, can be grafted in again and those grafted in can be cut off. It is about God’s freedom to bring salvation to the gentiles without violating his covenants to Israel (which is clearly noticed when you read the OT references and quotes in Rom 9).

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