Category Archives: satire

Only Paul [Satire]

What was the purpose and extent of the atonement?  Was it to merely make salvation possible for all and secure it for none?  Or was it to definitely secure salvation for Paul?  After setting aside man-centered thinking, it can be proven with certainty that Jesus died to effectually secure salvation for Paul of Tarsus, and for Paul alone.

First, take a look at Galatians 2:20. This is the most important verse in the Bible, because it explicitly states the extent of the atonement (bold mine):

“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

This verse indisputably proves that Jesus died only for Paul.

It’s worth noting that some liberal theologians have referenced other passages in vain philosophical attempts to apply the atonement to others for whom it was not intended. These heretics fail to make an important distinction.  Ambiguous verses should always be interpreted in the light of more explicit verses. Galatians 2:20 clearly limits the scope of the atonement to only Paul.  Other less clear passages should be interpreted accordingly.  If Galatians 2:20 was the only verse that declared the extent of the atonement, the heretics might have a point. By God’s providence, it is not. Let’s study some additional passages.

In Matthew 18:12 we learn that the shepherd purposed to save one sheep. In fact he abandoned 99 sheep to save the one (bold mine):

What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off?

The text is clear.  The shepherd found and saved only one sheep.  He left the 99 other sheep on the hills. By doing this the shepherd maximized his glory. Moreover, he increased the appreciation and adoration of Paul, whom was effectually retrieved. If other sheep had also been retrieved, it would have diluted the value of the shepherd’s act.

To make his point extra clear, Jesus repeats the account in Luke 15:4-6 (bold mine):

Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Does he not leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.”

One again, we see the shepherd saving only one sheep. He leaves the reprobate sheep in open country, puts the one sheep on his shoulders, and goes home.

Theologian James White gives additional insight on the use of the word sheep (bold mine):

“The good Shepherd lays down His life in behalf of the sheep. Are all men the sheep of Christ? Certainly not…”

Before commenting on this quote, it is necessary to exegete White’s use of the term “sheep”. To the untrained mind, it appears that White is using the word “sheep” to refer to more than one person. That is not the case. In English the word “sheep” can be singular or it can be plural.  This is defined by the context in which the word is used.

Singular example:  Look! There is one sheep over there!
Plural example:  Look! There are a boat load of sheep over there! We must be in New Zealand!

Untrained and tradition entrenched readers do not often note this subtle distinction in the usage of the word “sheep”. Nor do the misguided plural atonement heretics who resort to man centered thinking over exegesis. White’s context is plain. When he uses the phrases “the sheep” and “the sheep of Christ”, he is referring to only one sheep. White does not use the term “boat load of sheep”, nor does he refer to New Zealand. He properly defines his context by singularly stating “the sheep” (which of course we know is Paul).

Enough with vain philosophy, let’s get back to God’s word and take a look at 1 Corinthians 9:24 (bold mine):

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.

Again, Paul himself writes that only he will get the prize.

Another critical passage is Acts 9:3-7 (The Damascus Road story). In it we see with clarity that Jesus chose only Paul: (bold mine)

Now as he went on his way, he approached Damascus, and suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. And falling to the ground he heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?”….the men who were traveling with him stood speechless, hearing the voice but seeing no one.

This passage indicates that only Paul heard Jesus’ voice and saw the light from heaven. The travelers with Paul heard the voice but did not see the light. Clearly the light wasn’t intended for them because they were reprobate. Of course they would be, they were not Paul.

Philosophical Arguments Proving Atonement for Paul:
Philosophy is usually evil, however, it may be used sparingly when it is girded by God’s word.   There are three philosophical possibilities for the extent of the atonement:
1) The atonement was for everyone
2) The atonement was for no one.
3) The atonement was for Paul.

We know that #1 is false, that is universalism. We know that #2 is false because Paul was saved. Option #3 is all that is left. The atonement was for Paul.

Common objections to Atonement for Paul:

Q: What about the many passages that speak about “the world”? Isn’t the world more than Paul?

A: In light of the explicit statements of Gal 2:20 and 1 Cor 9:24, it is clear that the ambiguous passages that refer to “world” are more accurately translated as “the world of the one elect person whose name is Paul”. Remember, ambiguous passages should always be interpreted in the context of explicit ones.

Q: But doesn’t Romans 1:16 state salvation is for both Greek and Jew? How can this be the one person Paul?

A: Quit imposing your own biased interpretation on the word. Read scripture and let it speak for itself. Paul easily answers this objection in 1 Corinthians 9:20-21 “To the Jews I became like a Jew…To those not having the law I became like one not having the law…“ You see, Paul is both Jew and Greek. Romans 1:16 refers only to Paul.

Q: But what about Mark 10:45?  It says Jesus gave his life as a ransom for many.

A: Scholars are divided on the issue, but the most likely explanation is that Paul’s nickname was “Manny”.   The verse should be read as “ransom for Manny.”

Q: Okay, What about Mary, Jesus’ mother? She wasn’t Paul and yet the Bible says she was blessed.

A: What are you, some kind of closet Catholic? That line of reasoning always leads back to Rome.

Q: This whole system is not fair. If only Paul is saved, what about everyone else who perishes? This is a bum deal for everyone except Paul.

A: Paul anticipates your objection and addresses it in Romans 9:20 “Who are you oh man to talk back to God?.” In other words this may seem unfair from your man-centered view, but it is God’s sovereign choice to individually and effectually save Paul alone. This gives God more glory, and makes Paul’s salvation more valuable. Don’t talk back to God.

Q: I’m not talking back to God, I’m saying that your system unfairly distorts the character of God.

A: That’s because you’re depending on philosophy instead of scripture.  Besides, only one person usually wins the lottery too.  Do you complain about that? Sometimes no one wins the lottery and the jackpot grows even bigger. If everyone won the lottery it would dilute the value. For example if the jackpot was $1 million and 10 million people won it, they would each get only 10 cents. What a ripoff! The same principles apply to salvation. Paul hit the jackpot.

Q: But wasn’t it a waste of Jesus’ sacrifice to apply it only to Paul when it could have covered more?

A: Not at all, this was planned by divine decree before the creation of the world. Jesus blood was only intended for Paul, and it effectually secured Paul’s salvation. The atonement did not make salvation merely possible for Paul, it secured it.

Q: I don’t find this doctrine very motivating to preach the Gospel.

A: That is a straw man. Paul taught this doctrine, and he was very motivated. Besides, scripture commands us to preach the Gospel.

[Note: this post is an attempt at satire.  Any similarities to another theological system are entirely coincidental.  ;) This is also an updated version of a post I did a few years back.  You can find the original here.]

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Filed under Calvinism, Election, limited atonement, satire

Stuff Liberal Christians Like (Satire)

The following is an attempt at humor about stuff liberal Christians (LCs) like. Sometimes I identify with the LC, so don’t take this too seriously.  And if it hits too close to home, here’s a post you might appreciate more: Stuff Young Calvinists Like.  Any similarities between the two lists are entirely coincidental. :)

Stuff Liberal Christians Like

Approved Media.  All LCs follow the Daily Show, The Colbert Report, and NPR.  In that order. Following approved media indicates that you are an original thinker.  The Daily Show receives the highest honors.  It is watched religiously by all LCs, although they would object to the term “religious”  as used in that context.    It is preferable to watch approved media on your laptop rather than live on TV.   Watching TV indicates an addiction to entertainment,  plus the money used for your cable subscription could have been better spent on something worthwhile like fair trade coffee or Obama 2012.  It is considered acceptable to listen to NPR live, as long as you read the Huffington Post at the same time.  LCs also enjoy Bill Maher, but this requires a qualification.  LCs strongly approve of Maher’s vulgarity and his misogynistic treatment of conservative women, however, his blanket hatred of anything remotely deistic is a minor cause for concern.  If  you replace “remotely deistic” with “fundamentalist”, this concern goes away.  LCs also believe that you are a victim of propaganda if you like Fox News, Drudge, or Glenn Beck.  Only the narrow minded listen to one side of the story.

Being Authentic.  LCs place an extremely high priority on being authentic.  You prove you are authentic by getting a tattoo, refusing to listen to contemporary Christian music, and by shopping at a co-op instead of Walmart.

Drinking Alcohol to Relax.  If an LC asks what you do to relax, the correct answer is: “I like to have a glass of wine, and watch the Colbert Report online.”   Make sure to point out that you’re only drinking one glass, and take care to correctly pronounce “Colbert” in French.   They will smile and tell you that they prefer to drink light beer,  listen to NPR, and read Bishop Spong.  When it comes to relaxation, the correct answer always involves alcohol and approved media.  Frequent references to alcohol help LCs prove that they have thrown off the legalism of their parents.  This rule isn’t applicable to Catholic LCs.

Cursing Like a Sailor.  All LCs curse.  Dropping the F-bomb is a great way to parade one’s spirituality.   Swearing is also used as a way of indicating one’s strong commitment to social justice issues.  Thus it is important to swear only in the correct context.  Here are some examples:

*BLEEP* They canceled the curb side recycling program! [Correct usage]

*BLEEP* My power bill has doubled since last year! [Incorrect usage]

Notice how the correct example addresses a social justice issue.  That’s because curb side recycling impacts the poor, but rising power rates do not.

Barack Obama. LCs love Barack Obama. This is because of the color of his skin, not the content of his character.  Of course, an LC will not admit this up front.   If you ask an LC for specifics about what he likes about Obama, he will give you a disdainful look.  If that doesn’t shut down the discussion, he will scream something about WMD’s and the evils of a theocracy.    If you point out that Obama started several new Middle Eastern wars, and is spending your kid’s money today, he will accuse you of being a racist.

Rob Bell.  LCs love Rob Bell.  They particularity appreciate that he writes at a 5th grade reading level, in pithy one sentence paragraphs.   LCs have read all of Bell’s books, and will often trot out this fact to impress you.  What they neglect to mention is that it took them all of 15 minutes to read everything Bell has ever written, and that they did this while simultaneously listening to NPR.  While LCs like Bell, they detest Mars Hill.  LCs believe that all mega churches are evil.  An exception cannot be made for Bell, even if he does wear cool glasses.  LCs also despise the other Mars Hill run by Mark Driscoll, for obvious reasons.  Driscoll is the worst kind of species – a fundamentalist complementarian who also drinks and curses.  This messes up all of the LCs’ meta-narratives.

Palestine.  The LCs position on Palestine is best understood by addressing an uncomfortable demographic fact.  Most LCs are white.  LCs experience a lot of self-hate over being part of a privileged group, and wish that they were a non-Jewish minority instead.    LCs are always looking for ways to appear sympathetic to the plight of minorities (posting Facebook statuses is an excellent way) while at the same time taking great care to do nothing that might risk their own privileged status.  The easiest and most non-threatening way to accomplish this goal is by placing the blame on Israel for the Palestinian conflict.  If Israel would submit to Muslim control, all violence in the Middle East would end, and the world would become a peaceful place.  LCs are also irritated that Israel even exists, because it’s an indication that God keeps his promises, and that all that end times crap just might be true.

The Word “Progressive”.  LCs hate to be called liberal.  The word conjures up images of overweight gray-haired white male politicians from Massachusetts.  LCs prefer to be called “progressive”.  Don’t confuse the two terms.  Liberals take money from the rich.  Progressives make sure that no one gets rich.

The NRSV.  The NRSV is the preferred Bible translation for LCs.  It uses gender neutral language, Calvinists hate it, and you can get it with the apocrypha.  LCs haven’t actually read the apocrypha, but it’s important for them to have a Bible that contains it, as it gives evidence of their ecumenical spirit.

Important disclaimer: I’m 1/64 Cherokee. It’s very important for LCs to be aware of that fact, as it gives me carte blanche to write posts like this. :)

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Killing Ants

When I was a kid I used to get a lot of enjoyment from killing ants. I loved to stir up their hills and stomp on them.  Sometimes I would burn the loathsome insects with a magnifying glass.  A favorite method of ant termination was to flood their hills with water. It was satisfying to watch them struggle and drown.

After starting a flood I would sometimes stick a twig in the water to let a few special ants out.  They weren’t special because of anything they had done, but because I chose to let them live.   It was always first necessary to terminate a massive numbers of ants before showing any mercy.  I needed to express my attribute of wrath, and the elect ants had to appreciate that they were living because of my good pleasure.

Keep in mind that all of the ants I killed had it coming.  Ants bite even when you command them not to.

You might wonder how the ants felt about all this?   They were no doubt in awe and reverence that I let  any of them live.  I could have killed them all, but instead I maximized my glory by letting a few of them live.  I could also make up whatever rules I felt like, because I had the power to.   If the ants didn’t like it, they could always talk to the heal of my shoe.

I had two wills regarding the ants. My revealed will was that I really loved the ants and didn’t want any of them to die.   My secret will was that I hated ants and wanted to kill them. If that seems paradoxical, that’s because it’s necessary to distinguish between what I wanted to have happen and what I willed to have happen.

If all this is still confusing, remember, the mind of a grade-schooler is a mystery.

[For those who are concerned, the ant sadism can be traced to two events. 1) In kindergarten I blundered into a rather large red ant hill. This did not work out too well for me. 2) When I was in fifth grade I read a short story called Leiningen Versus the Ants. Read that story and you will hate ants too.  It was providential that Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull had not yet been released, or NO ants would have survived.]

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Arminian and Calvinist Christmas Cards

(This is a repost from last year. Merry Christmas!)

Arminian Christmas Card:

Calvinist Christmas Card:


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Worship Star

This is a pretty funny look inside the Christian music industry. Wesley even gets a kudo (no doubt because his name rhymes with “Presley”).

:)

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A Quiz for Your Calvinist Friends

A little quiz for your Calvinist Friends. Inspired by the ever resourceful JC Thibodaux and by a Calvinist dude named Jay Banks. Enjoy.

Genesis 25:23 The LORD said to [Rebekah], “Two nations are in your womb, and two peoples from within you will be separated; one people will be stronger than the other, and the older will serve the younger.”

Q: What was in Rebekah’s womb?

A. Two nations and two peoples.
B. One elect person and one reprobate person.
C. Don’t even try to refer to the Old Testament for your exegesis of Romans 9. Heretic.

Ezekiel 18:23 Do I take any pleasure in the death of the wicked? declares the Sovereign LORD. Rather, am I not pleased when they turn from their ways and live?

Q: How much pleasure does the Sovereign Lord take in the death of the wicked?

A. No pleasure
B. Much pleasure
C. No revealed pleasure, but lots of secret pleasure.

Matthew 23:37 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing.

Q: Why didn’t Jesus gather up those in Jerusalem, when he longed to?

A. Because they were not willing.
B. This is a mystery.
C. Hello pea brain. Jesus was speaking of general chicks, not effectual chicks.

Luke 10:30-37 [The story of the good Samaritan – the priest and Levite “pass by” the traveler, the Samaritan stops and helps.]

Q: Which of these three do you think showed mercy?

A. The Samaritan. Go and do likewise.
B. The priest and the Levite showed mercy by passing by.
C. Each person showed a different kind of mercy. If all had stopped to help, the act of the Samaritan would have been diluted.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Q: God loves what?

A. The world
B. The elect.
C. His glory.

Q: Who will not perish?

A. Whoever believes in God’s only son.
B. Let me get back to you on that, I need to look up the answer on “Desiring God”.
C. Francis Schaeffer won’t perish, but his kid Franky was decreed to go off the deep end.

Acts 16:30,31 [The jailer] then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.”

Q: What must I do to be saved?

A. Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved.
B. Win the divine lottery.
C. The jailer was a Pelagian.

Romans 11:32 For God has bound all men over to disobedience so that he may have mercy on them all.

Q: Who does “all” refer to in this verse?

A. All
B. The elect
C. An unbiased reading of the text shows that the first all refers to everyone and the second all refers to only the elect.

1 Timothy 1:18,19 Timothy, my son, I give you this instruction in keeping with the prophecies once made about you, so that by following them you may fight the good fight, holding on to faith and a good conscience. Some have rejected these and so have shipwrecked their faith.

Q: Paul says that some people have done what with their faith?

A. Some have shipwrecked their faith.
B. This is a hypothetical analogy with no real world application. It is merely used by God to ensure the perseverance of the elect.
C. Nice try. Obviously the ship was never floating in the first place.

1 Timothy 2:4 [God] wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.

Q: Who does God want to be saved?

A. All men
B. All men, but no women.
C. God really wants all men to be saved, but only in such a way that he damns most in order to maximize his glory.

1 Peter 1:1,2 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To God’s elect, strangers in the world, scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia, who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and sprinkling by his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance.

Q: How are the elect chosen?

A. According to the foreknowledge of God the Father.
B. If you were elect you would already know the answer to this question.
C. Who are you oh man to talk back to Piper?

1 John 2:2 He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.

Q: Jesus is the atoning sacrifice for what and what?

A. Our sins and also for the sins of the whole world.
B. The sins of the elect, and also for the sins of the elect.
C. The correct word is “propitiation”. You show your Arminian tendencies by quoting from the NIV. Read the ESV, heretic.

BONUS ROUND!

Revelation 3:20 Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.

Q: Which picture best depicts the above verse?

A. B.
C.

Add up your score:
2 points for every A
1 point for every B
0 points for every C

Score:
25+ points – Congrats! You are predestined to be an Arminian
20-24 points – You read a lot of Norm Geisler.
15-19 points – Old school Calvinist
10-14 points – Neo-Reformed
0-9 points – James White is your homie.

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Filed under Arminianism, Calvinism, humor, quiz, satire

Frankenstein vs Calvinism

(Warning, this is pretty cheesy and is not meant to be taken seriously)

How many similarities are there between the story of Frankenstein and the theology of John Calvin? Let’s take a look…

Frankenstein – Start with completely dead corpse.
Calvinism – Check

Frankenstein – Corpse is zapped with lightning and brought to life.
Calvinism – Check

Frankenstein – Creator is self centered and has an ends justifies the means mentality.
Calvinism – Check

Frankenstein – Even after being zapped with lightning Frankenstein is still nothing more than a totally depraved monster.
Calvinism – Check

Frankenstein – Hunchbacked servant named Igor
Calvinism – Hunchback servant named Pierre

Frankenstein – “I am not a Frankenstein. I’m a Fronkensteen. Don’t give me that. I don’t believe in fate. And I won’t say it!…All right, you win. You win. I give. I’ll say it. I’ll say it. I’ll say it. DESTINY! DESTINY! NO ESCAPING THAT FOR ME! DESTINY! DESTINY! NO ESCAPING THAT FOR ME!”
Calvinism – Check

(That last one is a reference to Young Frankenstein)

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