Spurgeon near the end of his life.
Spurgeon near the end of his life. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m currently ensickened(c). But a Facebook friend tagged me in a post. This is from Charles Spurgeon:

“I have my own private opinion that there is no such thing as preaching Christ and Him crucified, unless we preach what nowadays is called Calvinism. It is a nickname to call it Calvinism; Calvinism is the gospel, and nothing else. I do not believe we can preach the gospel, if we do not preach justification by faith, without works; nor unless we preach the sovereignty of God in His dispensation of grace; nor unless we exalt the electing, unchangeable, eternal, immutable, conquering love of Jehovah; nor do I think we can preach the gospel, unless we base it upon the special and particular redemption of His elect and chosen people which Christ wrought out upon the cross; nor can I comprehend a gospel which lets saints fall away after they are called, and suffers the children of God to be burned in the fires of damnation after having once believed in Jesus. Such a gospel I abhor.”

This is my response:

There is no greater sin than that which is exemplified by Spurgeon, who would set aside the Gospel of Jesus preached for 1500 years before Calvin and without Calvinism and to reject everything else but Calvinism as a sign of the Gospel. This requires a self-delusion so powerful that it cannot help but prove absolute depravity.

To suggest that God has predestined some and so on, is to misread Scripture, deny it the canonical narrative assumed between Genesis and Revelation — it ignores the narrative of exile and redemption, of particularism and universalism. It takes Scripture and makes it meaningless.

To suggest that the death of Christ is but for a select few who God has fore-chosen ignores the Gospel — that if Christ is lifted up, that is crucified, he would draw all to him… that Christ is the sign of God’s love for the entire world. It makes the death of Christ a sign not of love, but of abuse from a vengeful and controlling deity that is little more than Calvin’s father warmed over.

Thoughts?

I am reminded that the East found Calvinism so reprehensible that it labeled it a heresy.