Why I Am A Calvinist!

Today, during my perusal through several of the blogs I frequent, I came across one that reminded me of my own journey from Semi-Pelagian Arminianism to the Doctrines of Grace.  Matter of fact, this story is so close to my own that I just couldn’t pass sharing it.

Brandon Lucas writes:

Almost a decade ago I was involved in a titanic spiritual battle between two opposing theological views. I could feel the once rock solid doctrines of free will slipping through my fingers like fine sand. I begged and beseeched the Lord to deliver me from the relentless reasonings and scriptural bombshells ripping the house I had built on the shifting dunes of man-centered doctrines. My pride and self-respect were on the line.

See, for the first decade of my born-again life I embraced a form of Arminianism that many call Semi-Pelagianism. Simply put, I believed that man’s free will is the deciding factor in salvation. Calvinism, which is the belief that God is sovereign over all things, including man’s salvation, had recently started making sense to me and I was drawn to it. (While at the same time being repulsed by it).

Calvinism was a dirty word in my old church. I considered it to be on equal footing with cultic beliefs.

I used to say such things as:

“Calvinism is a doctrine of demons!”

Or worse yet:

“If God is like how the Calvinists describe him, I would never serve such a cruel, heartless dictator who arbitrarily chooses who will and will not be saved!”

Read the rest here.

Freewill?

Q. 21. Did man continue in that estate wherein God at first created him?

So reads Question 21 of the Westminster Larger Catechism (Question 13 of the Shorter).  The answer to this question is as follows:

A. Our first parents being left to the freedom of their own will, through the temptation of Satan, transgressed the commandment of God in eating the forbidden fruit; and thereby fell from the estate of innocency wherein they were created.

Scripture –

Genesis 3:6-8 – So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.  And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden.

Genesis 3:13 – Then the LORD God said to the woman, “What is this that you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”

2 Corinthians 11:3 – But I am afraid that as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ.

Freewill seems to be a huge divide between those with a Calvinistic or Arminian view.  Did man have a freewill at one point and time?  I would agree with the Westminster Catechism and say that before the fall of man, yes he did have freewill.  But after the fall is a different story.  I know that there are many who disagree with me, and that is fine with me.  But lest you think that I don’t care about the opinion of those who don’t agree with me, know that up until a few years ago, I was firmly entrenched in an Arminian view of man’s freewill and believed I had the power to choose God.  Guess I would now be considered a defector because I no longer think that way.

The reason my views changed is thanks to Paul, the Apostle (I have a cousin named Paul, but I haven’t talked to him in 20+ years in case anyone thought it was “that” Paul).  Continue reading