There is a mystery. An eternal circle or infinite depth to GOD. This is true of His attributes also. Heresy begins when we add or detract from what GOD has said in our attempt to intellectually “explain the mystery” for human consumption rather than admitting it’s a mystery and admiring it.
We have infinitely less possibility of explaining the mysteries of GOD than a toddler has of explaining advanced algorithms.
A few examples:
ALL POWERFUL: Can God make something so big, He can’t lift it?
TRINITY: How can God be three but one?
DEITY / HUMANITY: How can God never be tempted, but Jesus who was God was tempted in all points like us?
[False teachers attempt to “explain” this mystery by denying His Deity]
ETERNAL: What does “no beginning, no ending” look like? How can God be outside of time, but inside of time at the same time?
ALL PRESENT: How can God be everywhere, but in one place (on His throne, in my heart, etc) all at once? How could Jesus’ soul be in hell (Acts 2:31) and in paradise (Luke 23:42-43) at the same time?
SOVEREIGNTY: How can God give us all an equal and a free choice, but then elect certain people via additional grace?
ALL KNOWING: How can God know everything, but Jesus not know the day or the hour (only the Father in heaven) of His second coming?
INCARNATION: How could God, who is a Spirit, place himself geographically into a body? How could there be Christophanies in the Old Testament? Was Jesus, who is an Eternal Being, as the Son of Man able to go back in time or into the future?
VIRGIN BIRTH: How could Jesus be born of a woman, but without her sin affecting Him?
GOODNESS: How could a good God allow men to be born into the world that He knows will burn in hell forever? While a choice was required for us to love God, it also allowed us to choose sin. Why did God create love to require a choice? Why does good have to be hard for us? To test our love more? Then why couldn’t love have been created to not need tests?
Why are the laws of the universe apparently unchangeable? I say “apparently”, because Jesus had to die on the cross. If the rules were changeable, don’t you think He would have foregone such agony? The questions can continue forever.
These questions and many more we ask, but we must learn to accept they are true and that we will need a new body and mind like Jesus to understand them. Attempting to “explain the mysteries” for human consumption leads to strife, heresies, and all manner of confusion, when we should instead acknowledge that it is an unexplainable mystery.
He is GOD. We bow in awe of Him, for though we do not understand Him, we believe Him.
I like one sign that I saw in Charlotte about fifteen years ago. It said: “God does not ask us to understand Him, just love Him”. Even Calvin at the end of his Institutes admits that he doesn’t understand it all, but is hoping to inspire and stimulate others to seek answers on these matters.
GRACE: The Mystery of Grace is incomprehensible by humankind. It is a vast and infinite puzzle or mystery, but God knows every piece and where each goes. Calvin, Arminius, or any other mere man will never solve this mystery. If anything, their speculation has created strife in the Body of Christ as some of their followers began to use their speculation as an addendum to GOD’s Word, a very dangerous practice. Enduring faith is what saves us, not enduring works, as seen in the Scriptures repeatedly. When you see assurances of salvation throughout Scripture, you will see such assurance is offered to those who ‘believe’. This action verb ‘believe’ is in the present linear continuous tense which is best interpreted “believe and believe and continue to believe”.
For example, John 5:24 says:
“Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.”
In other words, faith is what saves. Works do not. You must “believe and believe and continue to believe” and you have eternal life. It’s not “believe in the past at some moment in time” and then you have eternal life.
You do not have to work for salvation, either before or after your commitment to Christ and the Spirit’s indwelling. Enduring in works is not necessary for salvation, but you do have to endure in faith as shown in Revelation 2 and 3, Hebrews 6, and many, many other passages. This is what John Calvin taught as well, as you will see later in this article.
True faith will produce works, but works cannot assist in grace or salvation before or after salvation. “Means of grace” is never taught in Scripture for sanctification or salvation, and the Scripture trumps either the Reformers, the Calvinists, the Baptists or any other theological system.
“And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endures to the end shall be saved.” – Matthew 10:22
Enduring faith saves. Enduring works have nothing to do with salvation.
COMPARE THESE BIBLICAL CONCEPTS:
- God poured His grace upon all men
- GOD would have all men to come to the knowledge of the truth
- GOD is not a respecter of persons
- Salvation is by grace through faith and that not of ourselves; it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast
- No man can believe unless the Spirit draws him
- Jesus was lifted up, so he might draw all men unto Himself
- God chose us and gave us grace (Calvin loves this)
- I chose God because of His grace (Arminius loves this).
Of these last two points, BOTH are true. God chose us because we chose Him because He chose us because we chose Him because … this is beyond our comprehension.
SEVEN REASONS TO AVOID SPECULATION ON GOD’S INFINITE NATURE
For those who accept the “TULIP” of Calvin or the teaching of Arminius regarding the Sovereignty and Grace of GOD; for those who teach heresies that attempt to explain the inner mechanics of the Virgin Birth, the dual Divinity and Humanity of Christ, the Omnipotence, the Omniscience, Omnipresence, Eternalness or other attributes of GOD, I would warn you to avoid doing so. By speculating on the inner mechanics of GOD’s Divine Attributes, you will be adding words to the Bible that are not in the Bible, and you will be doing all of this in the name of “interpretation” when in reality, you are actually adding your SPECULATION to Scripture. You will consider yourself a clever intellectual for having solved what brilliant scholars before you could not … at least in your own mind. In reality, you will bring division to the church while the lost world will wonder why there are so many “interpretations”.
Most denominations in Protestant non-sacramental circles would have their differences resolved with this approach. No more divisions would exist between Methodists, Presbyterians, Free Will Baptists, Reformed, or many other sects if people stopped following men who add their speculation to the Bible and followed only the Bible.
If GOD wanted to share the inner mechanics of His mysteries, such as the Mystery of Grace or Election, do you not think He could have done so in great detail? Our minds cannot comprehend GOD’s thoughts, so why do we expect Him to explain the infinite nature of His attributes, His mysteries, and His prophetic secrets to finite minds like ours? If you wish to challenge your intellect, try comprehending the length of eternity. If you cannot understand this one attribute of GOD, why do you strive to understand the vast and infinite well of Grace? Or any of His other attributes?
Here are SEVEN GOOD REASONS TO AVOID SUCH SPECULATION:
1. Deuteronomy 4:2
“Ye shall not add unto the Word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.”
2. Deuteronomy 12:32
“What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it.”
3. Jeremiah 26:2
“Thus saith the LORD; Stand in the court of the LORD’s house, and speak unto all the cities of Judah, which come to worship in the LORD’s house, all the words that I command thee to speak unto them; diminish not a word:”
4. Revelation 22:18-19
“For I testify unto every man that hears the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.”
5. Deuteronomy 29:29
“The secret things belong unto the LORD our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law.”
6. Isaiah 55:8-9
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.”
7. Ephesians 2:7
“That in the ages to come He might shew the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.”
Scriptures, in the original Greek, make it abundantly clear that GOD is not a respecter of men and that he draws all men to Himself, so that whosoever believes in Him by counting the cost and making such a choice will be given the Holy Spirit. The same Scripture makes it equally clear that GOD elects or chooses His Bride, gives us grace in order to have faith, gives grace to the humble, resists the proud, and without His grace, we would never choose Him.
Does He give equal grace at the beginning and then as some are humble, does He give more grace? As others are more proud, does He resist them? We are not told all the details of this or any other aspect of how grace operates from a Divine perspective of Sovereignty and Free Will; therefore, TULIP, a popular Calvinistic acronym for his theological system, is an addition to Scripture. Some of TULIP is absolutely against Scripture in how it adamantly limits Christ’s atonement and states that GOD’s grace is irresistible without any conditions or explanation. The BIBLE doesn’t say such things, so this is mere speculation by Calvin and his followers.
On the other hand, those who teach that we gain or lose salvation based upon works are legalistic, whether they claim that the works are required before the sinner’s prayer and baptism of the Spirit or if they claim that the works are required after His indwelling. Such teaching is adding to the grace of GOD. Sacramentalists are similar to “Repeated-Regenerationists” in this way. Such legalism and “work salvation” teaching is dangerous heresy. Calvin was a sacramentalist ironically (works), while Arminius was closer to the other side of the fence (works in a different way). Both are lacking Scriptural backing. Both are adding their “thoughts” to Scripture in order to create a man-made system of theology. Scripture warns in both Deuteronomy (twice) and in Revelation about adding to Scripture or detracting from it. We are given very severe warnings about changing the gospel of GOD into a false gospel in Galatians.
One of the reasons why some have fought over these two belief systems of Calvin and Arminius (rather than dismissing them as speculation that goes beyond the Scripture) is the “easy-street salvation” school of thought, in my opinion. Some believers may feel that if they can prove Calvinism is true, they can then cast their faith aside through risky behavior and still go to heaven, because “once saved always saved”.
This “easy-street salvation” is not taught by Calvin or Arminius. The ELECT are not those who “said a prayer” but rather those who were given additional grace to have faith in Jesus and “kept the faith” to the end of their journey (“the elect”). A “sinner’s prayer” doesn’t save us, but rather a faith in Jesus which may be manifest as a sinner’s prayer in the beginning, but it is more importantly a faith in Jesus that endures and this faith is only made possible by His grace. For example, Calvin says regarding such “easy-street salvation” in his commentary on I Timothy [I Timothy 1:19] the following quote:
[QUOTE BEGINS] “19 Having faith and a good conscience I understand the word faith to be a general term, denoting sound doctrine. In the same sense he afterwards speaks of “the mystery of faith.” (1Ti 3:9.) And, indeed, the chief things demanded from a teacher are these two: — that he shall hold by the pure truth of the gospel; and next, that he shall administer it with a good conscience and holiest zeal. Where these are found, all the others will follow of their own accord.
From which some having turned aside concerning faith He shows how necessary it is that faith be accompanied by a good conscience; because, on the other hand, the punishment of a bad conscience is turning aside from the path of duty. They who do not serve God with a sincere and a perfect heart, but give a loose rein to wicked dispositions, even though at first they had a sound understanding, come to lose it altogether.
This passage ought to be carefully observed. We know that the treasure of sound doctrine is invaluable, and therefore there is nothing that we ought to dread more than to have it taken from us. But Paul here informs us, that there is only one way of keeping it safe; and that is, to secure it by the locks and bars of a good conscience. This is what we experience every day; for how comes it that there are so many who, laying aside the gospel, rush into wicked sects, or become involved in monstrous errors? It is because, by this kind of blindness, God punishes hypocrisy; as, on the other hand, a genuine fear of God gives strength for perseverance.
Hence we may learn two lessons. First, Teachers and ministers of the gospel, and, through them all the churches are taught with what horror they ought to regard a hypocritical and deceitful profession of true doctrine, when they learn that it is so severely punished. Secondly, this passage removes the offense by which so many persons are greatly distressed, when they perceive that some, who formerly professed their attachment to Christ and to the gospel, not only fall back into their former superstitions but (which is far worse) are bewildered and captivated by monstrous errors. For by such examples, God openly supports the majesty of the gospel, and openly shows that he cannot at all endure the profanation of it. And this is what experience has taught us in every age. All the errors that have existed in the Christian Church from the beginning, proceeded from this source, that in some persons, ambition, and in others, covetousness, extinguished the true fear of God. A bad conscience is, therefore, the mother of all heresies; and we see that a vast number of persons, who had not sincerely and honestly embraced the faith, are hurried along, like brute beasts, into the reveries of the Epicureans, so that their hypocrisy is exposed. And not only so, but contempt of God is universally prevalent, and the licentious and disgraceful lives of almost all ranks show that there is either none at all, or the smallest possible potion of integrity in the world; so that there is very great reason to fear lest the light which had been kindled may be speedily extinguished, and God may leave the pure understanding of the gospel to be possessed by very few.
Have made shipwreck: The metaphor taken from shipwreck is highly appropriate; for it suggests to us, that, if we wish to arrive safely at the harbor, our course must be guided by a good conscience, otherwise there is danger of “shipwreck;” that is, there is danger lest faith be sunk by a bad conscience, as by a whirlpool in a stormy sea.” [QUOTE ENDS]
Taken from here: http://www.sacred-texts.com/chr/calvin/cc43/cc43005.htm
Here’s verses that are from both sides. First, a few of the verses that emphasize Free Will.
Mat 10:22 “And ye shall be hated of all [men] for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.”
Rev 2:10 “Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast [some] of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.”
Rev 3:21 “To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.”
Hbr 2:1-3 “Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let [them] slip. For if the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompence of reward; How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard [him];”
Ti 1:19 “Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck: [Calvin in his own commentary on Timothy explains that this is a believer who apostatizes and shipwrecks his faith and he warns believers of this possibility]”
Hbr 6:4-6 “For [it is] impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put [him] to an open shame. [“tasted”is the same word used in Hebrews 2 regarding Jesus tasting death].”
Cr 10:12 “Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.”
Hbr 3:12 “Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.”
Hbr 4:1 “Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left [us] of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.”
Hbr 4:11 “Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.”
Hbr 4:14 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast [our] profession.
Hbr 12:14-17 “Follow peace with all [men], and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble [you], and thereby many be defiled; Lest there [be] any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright. For ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears.”
Hbr 12:25 “See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more [shall not] we [escape], if we turn away from him that [speaketh] from heaven …”
Here are the verses that Calvinists say emphasize the Calvinistic Sovereignty concept.
Mark 7:21-23; Jer. 17:9; Rom. 6:20; Rom. 3:10-12; I Cor. 2:14; Eph. 2:3, 15; Calvinism maintains that because of our fallen nature we are born again not by our own will but God’s will (John 1:12-13); God grants that we believe (Phil. 1:29); faith is the work of God (John 6:28-29); God appoints people to believe (Acts 13:48); and God predestines (Eph. 1:1-11; Rom. 8:29; 9:9-23).
Calvin teaches that God does not base His election on anything He sees in the individual. He chooses the elect according to the kind intention of His will (Eph. 1:4-8; Rom. 9:11) without any consideration of merit within the individual. Nor does God look into the future to see who would pick Him. Also, as some are elected into salvation, Calvin teaches that others are not (Rom. 9:15, 21).
Calvin states that Jesus died only for the elect. Matt. 26:28; John 10:11, 15; Matt. 25:32-33; John 17:9; Acts 20:28 and Eph. 5:25-27; Isaiah 53:12.
When God calls his elect into salvation, Calvin believes they cannot resist. Romans 9:16; Philippians 2:12-13; John 6:28-29; Acts 13:48; and John 1:12-13.
Perseverance of the Saints:
John 10:27-28; John 6:47; I John 2:19
Calvin’s teaching in his commentary on I Timothy suggests that he really believed the “P” in his acrostic T.U.L.I.P. was “Perseverance of the Elect” and NOT “Perseverance of the Saints”. Thus, I believe that either Calvin was self-contradictory or that both Calvinists and Arminius followers would agree on the “P” in T.U.L.I.P. Ironically, Jack Hyles and many other “Eternal Securitists” are not Calvinistic in their beliefs, but “Easy-believism Eternal Securitists” for lack of a better word. In other words, they teach that if one prays the “sinner’s prayer”, they’re all set for heaven, regardless of their belief in GOD thereafter. On the other hand, Scripture uses conditions whenever it speaks of GOD’s promises regarding assurance of salvation. Assurance is only promised to believers and never to unbelievers. One is deemed “saved”, or as the Greek states it “safe”, if one believes (in a continuous tense in the Greek). Even Calvin believed that one could “shipwreck” one’s faith, and that it is faith that saves. The Scriptures speak very clearly in Hebrews and many other passages about the dangers of neglecting one’s faith and salvation.
Paul spoke of a man who was committing incest with his father’s wife, and told the early believers to deliver him to Satan for his physical destruction, so that his eternal soul might be saved.
“To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.” – 1 Corinthians 5:5
Why did Paul want them to deliver someone over to Satan to be destroyed physically? So that their spirit would be saved? How does this make sense with “eternal security”? It doesn’t. If eternally security was true, there’s no purpose for one to be destroyed physically. After all, according to such teaching, one just says a prayer to GOD and can never be lost; thus, a person may as well live to three hundred years old instead of being physically destroyed by Satan, because, in the “eternal security” world of “easy-believism”, there’s no worries about their soul being “saved in the day of the LORD Jesus”.
However, in Paul’s words, inspired by GOD, he states that the destruction of the body would be better than the destruction of the soul. Why? If one reaches a point of complete hedonism, as the man in incest to which Paul was speaking, it is better that they die in such a state of evil works, than that they continue to live and perhaps become an unbeliever again. Why? Hebrews 6 states clearly that such a person is impossible to be renewed unto repentance if they make the fatal error of entering again into unbelief. Thus, doesn’t this verse make more sense if one were destroyed by Satan before they enter into unbelief to their own eternal damnation? Without this purpose to this passage, the passage becomes purposeless? Thus, the “eternal security” view makes this passage in I Corinthians 5 completely and utterly nonsensical.
Avoiding heretics, as the apostles warned, makes more sense when you realize that you if you spend enough time with heretics, you may eventually accept their damning false gospel and enter unbelief. Of course, the Elect will not accept such a false gospel, but those with temporal faith rather than enduring faith are impacted since only those with enduring faith enter heaven.
“And you shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endures to the end shall be saved.” – Matthew 10:22
“But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.” – Matthew 24:13
“And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.” – Mark 13:13
In fact, the Scripture states clearly that salvation has no dependence upon works before salvation or after it, but that salvation does go hand-in-hand with belief, and that apostasy goes hand-in-hand with unbelief.
He that believes and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believes not shall be damned. – Mark 16:16
The parable of the sower and Judas Iscariot and the foolish virgins and others including several men who Paul named as having left the faith are examples of such a horrible end. Jesus said: “While I was with them, I kept them in your name, which you have given me. I have guarded them, and not one of them has been lost except the son of destruction, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.” – John 17:12
This passage is a great example of the balance for Jesus “keeps us” as He said here, but only those who the Father has “given” to Him. He also guarded them, but one was lost. Why? Jesus did not keep him and he was not one of the Elect. I would also caveat that works was not the reasoning for their being lost as some works salvation adherents and Arminius adherents state. Faith was the reasoning, because it was belief in the Old Testament that saved and belief in the New Testament as well. All of repentant faith and sustaining grace as evidenced by the seal of the Spirit. I recently explained to my child (who was asking) how Old Testament saints were saved. I explained that we all believe the Messiah is who He says He is – the One who can take away our sins by His sacrifice, and we give Him our life in faith. The O.T. saints never saw Him crucified but believed He could do it and gave their lives to Him. We today never saw Him crucified but we still believe He did it and we give our lives to Him. Judas stopped believing and was “lost” (Greek ‘apollymi’) as Jesus termed it. A lesson for those of us today, as was the wilderness testing of Israel and also the angels who left their first estate. How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation? That’s the key warning to the Body of Christ that commands that they abide in the Vine through belief and grace, so that they will not become branches fit for pruning and the fire. It is faith that saves. It is unbelief that damns.
Is it not fitting that the Greek word for unbelief is ‘apistia’, and the Greek word for apostasy or a “falling away” is ‘apostasia’?
On the “Irresistible Grace”, we must concede that GOD’s grace is both “irresistible” due to His election of saints, but also NOT “irresistible” due to His giving us an utterly free will choice in the matter – both are true – it’s just that we can’t understand this … we humans aren’t used to “GOD-thinking” such as Jesus being “tempted in all points” as a man, while equally being GOD who “can’t be tempted”.
Also, the same goes for “Limited Atonement”. GOD died for all men but knowing which ones would trust Him, He also died for certain men. BOTH are true. Jesus said that He died to draw ALL MEN unto Himself; yet we realize He also knew who would and wouldn’t choose Him and be chosen by Him and thus, he knew He was dying for only the Elect. BOTH again. Do you understand that we can’t comprehend this mystery?
On the “Unconditional Election”, I would state that GOD elected us unconditionally in that without His grace, we could not come to Him due to our total depravity; however, even though we are totally depraved, we are still given a choice and we choose – we cannot deny this; however, we choose based upon GOD’s grace. That means we may be totally depraved but we still have the ability to choose, and those who choose to believe are saved, so election is both unconditional and conditional which is far beyond the ability of depraved Calvinists or any other humans to comprehend.
Once again, BOTH are true. GOD says that He gives grace to the humble and resists the proud, so this makes room for some condition to exist even though we also know that in one sense we couldn’t merit GOD’s favor or be “humble” enough to merit such grace so we are “Unconditionally Chosen”; however, we choose due to grace and grace is given to the humble, while the proud are resisted.
GOD gives us the grace, but then gives us the choice to help us realize that we aren’t a robot-bride or a Bride that is being forced to stay in a relationship without choice as Calvin teaches. We are a Bride who has chosen Him and yet couldn’t without Him choosing us. To say He chose us first would be to say we didn’t choose Him once you realize that we couldn’t without His choosing us. To say we choose Him first is arrogance on our part. We can’t choose Him without His grace. Thus, the CONUNDRUM – the beautiful, magnificent, wondrous and glorious CONUNDRUM which He will explain to us throughout the ages as He says He will in Ephesians 2:7
“That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in [his] kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.”
With Calvinism, there’s no need for Ephesians 2:7 since Calvin felt he had it all figured out. The same goes for Arminius. Oh wretched are we humans who think we can spell out and detail the Mind of GOD and who add our meager, finite, pitiful thoughts to His infinite thoughts.
Besides, we are either a follower of Jesus or a follower of Calvin. Which will it be? Will you call yourself a Calvinist, a Wesleyan, a Remonstrant (follower of Arminius), or a follower of Apollo? Or will you call yourself a follower of Jesus? No man can serve two masters.
Either you must say the written and incarnate Word is sufficient or that you need the writings of Calvin or the Westminster Confessions or papal history, canons, bulls and creeds, charismatic words of ‘knowledge’ or man-made additions. The Bible is clear. We are not to add or diminish one word.
Both John Calvin and the Master of the Papal Inquisition and founder of the Jesuits, Ignatius of Loyola, both killed believers and attended the same college, and history tells us that Calvin assisted the Inquisition in great part, not just watching the death of many identified with Jesus, but he assisted in their torturous deaths himself. Would a Christian do this to the brethren? Would a Christian send even an unbeliever before the Inquisition?
I have heard that both Ignatius of Loyola and John Calvin were both conversos who carried out the will of the Tempter. If so, Calvin would possibly have been buried in a tomb with other infiltrating conversos. Today, nobody knows where John Calvin was buried. I will leave such matters for you to determine and will state that there needs to be more evidence before such matters can be considered ‘proven’.
I will only say that Calvin’s theology was far different from the Word who said to bless your enemies. Calvin killed his enemies. The Word said don’t add to Scripture. Calvin added. The Word said belief alone saves us (not works). Calvin added sacraments to the work of Christ as did many of the so-called ‘Protestants’. The Word said to love others as the second of the greatest commandments. Calvin hated Jews as did many ‘Protestants’ or ‘Reformers’ like Martin Luther who also taught works salvation through sacraments. Reformed theology attempts to annihilate the Jews’ covenant with GOD and their place in prophecy. The Word offers a different view. I once offered verses from the Word to a Calvinist and he pretended he didn’t have time. Yet, he did have time to read book after book by men, including Calvinist men. Who is the Master of such a person who finds books by Calvinists to be more enjoyable than the Book of the Word? Does Reformed theology’s popularity indicate we’re ‘close to the end’?
Why were popular reformed movements today like Sovereign Grace Ministries started originally as ‘People of Destiny International’ and ‘Covenant Life Church‘ by Roman Catholics, Larry Tomczak and C.J. Mahaney?
Why do the core Reformed doctrines, as well as the beliefs found within the Reformed movement from John Calvin on the Inquisition and beheading of other followers of Jesus, Jew hatred, and works salvation (sacramentum), come from protesting Catholics who believed in reforming the Catholic religious system of Rome?
The Baptists and Waldensians have a claimed lineage all the way back to the apostles and which predates Constantine the sun-worshiping emperor’s Roman Catholicism. Constantine’s statue is still seen in Vatican City today. The Protestant lineage is traced to the Catholic Reformers.
I believe the growing ‘Reformed’ movement today is actually an indication that many are drawing back under the Satanic skirts of Rome again as the time of the Gentiles is fading to its end as prophecy has predicted it would. As many enter the bed of Calvinism, they are half-way to the bed of Rome. Both Catholicism and Calvinism are anti-Jewish, anti-Abrahamic covenant, pro-works, pro-sacraments, and both add to Scripture with their own thoughts. By your fruits, you will know them.
Calvin said of those who identified with name of Jesus but who believed differently than him: “One should not be content with simply killing such people, but should burn them cruelly.”
Jesus said of the same type of people in Mark chapter 9: “For he who is not against us is on our side.”
You can read the context in that chapter. He was not saying that all His enemies were His children, but rather Jesus explained:
“Do not forbid him, for no one who works a miracle in My name can soon afterward speak evil of Me.”
While Calvin ordered people to the Inquisition, Jesus said in John 18 and Luke 6:
“My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here.”
“Bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you.”
Nowhere in Scripture is anyone told to kill someone for their beliefs.
Give me Jesus alone – for salvation, sanctification and edification. He is the Word and He is all we need. I need not call myself by any other man’s name.
Therefore, we conclude on the matter of T.U.L.I.P. that Calvin teaches “YES” to each of these five points. Arminius teaches “NO” to each of these five points. They both have valid Scriptures. How can we reconcile these Scriptures? They are both additions to Scripture. Were not the teachings of Calvin and Arminius the source of many schisms in the Body of Christ? And is not the root word of ‘heretic’ in the Greek, the word for ‘schism’? Were there not many other movements that created schisms as well? Were not the Jesuits masters of creating schisms?
Thus, I conclude that the Bible is teaching a mystery of grace that neither Calvin nor Arminius could understand, but which they attempted to intellectually solve to their own eternal ignominious shame.
I believe GOD’s grace is a mystery that no person can fully comprehend in this life. How is this possible? With GOD and His attributes, all things are possible. He is the Infinite One. We are the finite ones. We must realize we can never understand His Divine Nature in all of its fullness, including His Grace. We are not able to place GOD into a laboratory and dissect Him and His attributes.
Thus, instead of striving about doubtful disputations, we should avoid schisms and embrace the prophecies regarding the Jews of Israel that we are watching happen in our very day. We should refute salvation through sacraments and we should admit our own incompetency to understand the mind of GOD, refrain from adding to His Word, and unite in the Mission to bring the Gospel to all the world.