Monthly Archives: August 2009

Interesting Links 8-8-09

Peter Lumpkins writes about the misuse of the word “monergism” among Calvinistic Southern Baptists.

Ben Henshaw asks: Do you really want to claim John Calvin as your homeboy? Check out the reply thread on this one.

Speaking of which, you can get your Arminian homeboy apparel here.

Chris Skinner asks, does all mean all?

Between Two Worlds (Justin Taylor’s Calvinist blog) has a link to a series by Colin Hansen that looks at the dynamics of the Reformed Resurgence. (HT: Brian Abasciano)

Were the tunes to Wesley brother’s hymns based on tavern songs? That’s not true says Larry Withham. It is a wide spread misconception.

Don Heatly writes about the “myth” of the young progressive Christian. “I have been astounded by the disconnect between what I read younger generations are looking for in a church, and what many actually gravitate toward.”

Scot McKnight has re-posted a letter regarding how a pastor should deal with “pesky Calvinists”. There are lots of interesting comments in the thread.

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"Fun" Calvinist Quotes on Arminian Theology

Here are some less than flattering quotes about Arminian theology from various Calvinists. You can click on the author’s name if you’re interested in the original context. As an Arminian there’s really not much to say in reply to this kind of stuff. I have decided to use my God given free will to make fun of the quotes. My random thoughts are in italics. Don’t take them any more seriously than you take the Calvinist quotes. :) 

Agustus Toplady: If we sum up the evidence that has been given, we shall find its amount to be, that Arminianism came from the Church of Rome, and leads back again to the pit whence it was digged.

Now there you go again playing the Catholic card. If you can’t successfully debate your opponents, you can always fall back and call them Catholics. By the way, “Agustus” sounds pretty ROMAN to me. You might want to take a look in the mirror buddy. Mind if I call you Gus for short? Growing up I had a dog named Gus. He was a cool little schnauzer. He could urinate on command. That chubby chocolate eating kid from Willy Wonka was also named “Agustus”. That movie is one of my favorites. The Gene Wilder one, not the lame Johnny Depp one. Favorite Augustus line: “I feel very sorry for Wonka. It’s gonna cost him a fortune in fudge!”

John Owen: Who would have thought that our church would ever have given entertainment to these Belgic semi-Pelagians, who have cast dirt upon the faces and raked up the ashes of all those great and pious souls whom God magnified, in using as his instruments to reform his church; to the least of which the whole troop of Arminians shall never make themselves equal, though they swell till they break?

But Gus said that the Arminians were dug from the pit of Rome. Now you think that they’re entertained dirt casting Belgic semi-Pelagians? What the hey? Arminius was DUTCH, not Belgic. Belgic = Catholic. I hope you’re not trying to play the Catholic card again. To help you remember the difference between Belgium and Holland, try memorizing the following: “If it ain’t Dutch, it ain’t much.” Or here’s another: “Remonstrants, common sense.” Or you can simply visualize a windmill. At any rate, at least Arminius wasn’t French. No pious souls have ever come from France. Well, there was Joan of Arc. But she was Catholic AND a female leader – no doubt that’s two strikes in your book.
Christopher Ness: Lest this overflowing deluge of Arminianism should bring destruction upon us, there is great need that some servants of Christ should run to stop the further spreading of this plague and leprosy.

I like the word “deluge”. It looks like “fudge” and makes me hungry for chocolate. Anyway, you’re forgetting your theology again dude. Leprous Arminianism was decreed by God for his glory. Who are you oh man to talk back to the overflowing deluge? Besides, if someone tried to run and stop it, that would be a WORK, and that would give him something to boast about. Not to mention that he would get all wet. Also, I like your last name. It reminds me of Nessie.

Charles Spurgeon: And what is the heresy of Arminianism but the addition of something to the work of the Redeemer? Every heresy, if brought to the touchstone, will discover itself here. 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.

Can I call you Chuck? You’re right, the work of the Redeemer is nothing without the the gratuitous addition of exhaustive determinism. And don’t even get me going about those heretical Arminians, a bunch of tramps and thieves – the whole lot of them. As a side note, your own private opinion isn’t private anymore if you put it into print. And what does Touchstone have to do with anything? Touchstone is just the front for Disney’s R-rated movies. I fail to see how that is relevant. Oh wait…R-minian. I get it. Cute word play there Chuck.

John Piper: Here’s my rule of thumb: the more responsible a person is to shape the thoughts of others about God, the less Arminianism should be tolerated. Therefore church members should not be excommunicated for this view but elders and pastors and seminary and college teachers should be expected to hold the more fully biblical view of grace.

Whew, I had a scare there for a second. Glad I’m just a lowly church member! That means that you have to tolerate me. I’ll stick to warming pews so that you can’t kick me out. Don’t worry, I won’t do something rash like become an elder. Don’t tell Chuck, but I have my own private opinion that we should run off the Supralapsarians. By the way, since y’all live in the same town, you should stop and have coffee some time with Greg Boyd. It could be a teaching moment, as Obama likes to say. You could discuss something interesting, like whether or not God decreed the Minnesota bridge collapse.

R.C. Sproul: I agree with Packer and Johnston that Arminianism contains un-Christian elements in it and that their view of the relationship between faith and regeneration is fundamentally un-Christian. Is this error so egregious that it is fatal to salvation? People often ask if I believe Arminians are Christians? I usually answer, “Yes, barely.” They are Christians by what we call a felicitous inconsistency.

I’m curious, what does R.C. stand for? I’m guessing that it doesn’t stand for Roman Catholic. Maybe Remote Control? “Remote Control Sproul” has a very nice flow to it, plus it is consistent with your theology. Whatever R.C stands for, it makes me thirsty for a cola. Back to the subject at hand. Weren’t the egregious un-Christian elements of Arminianism decreed by God? And since your answer must be ‘yes’, I want to know was what was God thinking of when he came up with that particular felicitous inconsistency? Can you answer that without referring to Deut 29:29? Another thing I’m wondering about: how can anything be fatal to a fatalist?

John MacArthur: The question comes, “Can somebody who holds an Arminian view be a Christian?” And I would hate to say they couldn’t be. I really believe that it is possible to be Arminian and to be a Christian…to misunderstand your human capability, to misunderstand the election, to misunderstand the extent of the atonement, even to misunderstand the irresistible nature of God’s saving grace, and even to think you could lose your salvation. But, at the same time–while being confused or ignorant of those things–to know that you’re a sinner and know that the only way of salvation is through Jesus Christ. I guess you could say that someone could be an Arminian and push those points far enough, where they could jeopardize my confidence that they really are a Christian. You could push the point of not being totally depraved far enough where you’re actually being saved by your own works, by your own belief, by your own ingenuity, by your own self-induced faith. And you could get to the point where you could really wonder whether someone understands that it’s all a work of God.

Uh oh, the last thing I want to do is jeopardize your confidence, John. I’m probably going to lose some self-induced sleep over that one. By the way, it almost sounds like you think that Arminians can lose their salvation by thinking that they can lose their salvation. Now THAT would be a felicitous inconsistency.

C Matthew McMahon: Arminianism is not something hidden under a stone, but lives in full view, and in direct opposition, to the Gospel. It is a deceiving doctrine of demons wrought up from the pit of hell, where, in the consummation of the age, it will be cast for all eternity with the devil that spawned it and the false teachers who propagated it.

Devil spawned doctrine of demons huh? Tell me how you really feel C Matthew. Hmm, what does C stand for? Catholic? Sorry, redundant joke. Do you know how you can easily recognize demons? They’re the ones who like to burn human beings at the stake. By the way, are you any relation to Ed or Jim? Naw, probably not, they’re a lot nicer. And how did a hyper-Calvinist get on this list? Oh well, what’s done is done. Que sera sera I always say.

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