We are continuing our look at the Doctrines of Grace, commonly referred to as Calvinism. Today we are specifically looking at the second letter of the T.U.L.I.P. acronym, U, which stands for Unconditional Election. The first question that we have to ask before we deal with anything else is, “What is Unconditional Election?”
We are in the 5th installment of our look at Calvinism. We’ve look at some common questions & misconceptions like “Since God is Sovereign, Should We Evangelize the Lost?”, “Does Man Have a Free Will?”, and “Why Do Calvinists Follow a Man Instead of the Bible?” as well as a short look at the beginnings of Calvinism. Today I want to begin to look at the common acronym of T.U.L.I.P. that has its beginnings in Canons of Dordt. In short T.U.L.I.P. stands for Total Depravity, Unconditional Election, Limited Atonement, Irresistible Grace & the Perseverance of the Saints. We start with Total Depravity. Continue reading “Calvinism: Total Depravity”
Many people don’t have an accurate understanding of the origins of Calvinism. Many will say that it’s origin is with John Calvin and it’s solely man-made philosophy. This has already been answered in previous posts. Continue reading “Calvinism: What’s the History?”
Today I want to address the often asked question, why do Calvinists follow a man (John Calvin) instead of the bible? This question is extremely important for evangelicals who believe in Sola Scriptura or Scripture Alone. If the scriptures are authoritative and sufficient why do we need to follow a man when we have the bible? Continue reading “Calvinism: Why Do Calvinists Follow a Man Instead of the Bible?”
This is the second part of our series on Calvinism, where we are beginning with addressing some of the misconceptions that accompany the system of theology. In the first part of our series we dealt with the misconception that Calvinism hinders biblical evangelism. Today we are going to address the misconception that “Calvinism denies that we as humans have free will and are nothing more than robots.”
Today, I begin a study in the doctrines of grace, or commonly known by many as the 5 points of Calvinism. Calvinism is a belief that encapsulates an understanding of soteriology (doctrine of salvation). Sadly, Calvinism is often completely misunderstood by many within Christianity that do not hold to its beliefs. It’s often caricatured by a host of statements that sound good on the surface to many Christians, but are quickly shown to be untrue.
One of the most common misconceptions about Calvinism is: “Since God’s sovereign over our salvation and elects those who will be saved, there’s no need to evangelize the lost.” Continue reading “Calvinism: Since God is Sovereign, Should We Evangelize the Lost?”
In the last few weeks there has been much said about race relations in our country. I recently preached a sermon entitled, “The Gospel & Racial Reconciliation.”
Some highlights are: Continue reading “The Gospel & Racial Reconciliation”
I recently wrote a post entitled, “Confronting Racism and Racial Injustice” that answers a much larger question than I’ll be dealing with here. Hopefully, it will give you some insight into my heart and mind as you read this. I want to address the issue of the Confederate flag and how a Christian should respond. Continue reading “The Confederate Flag and the Christian”
I don’t normally write or speak in church on these types of issues. However, with the sad and horrible events that have happened in the past months culminating in the shooting of 9 African-Americans. In a place that was chosen obviously because it was an extremely significant Church that has been a beacon for over a hundred years in the battle for racial justice. All of this, plus add to my frustration of the constant irritating and racist posts I see on social media regularly, I felt the need to speak up. In no way do I think I’ll answer every objection or question, but hopefully this will help some. Let me start with my own story. Continue reading “Confronting Racism & Racial Injustice”
Christians are hypocrites. First of all let me say to you these three words are absolutely true. These three words are also loaded with many thoughts and valid concerns from those outside of Christianity. I would also say these three words have been used as an excuse to dismiss altogether the claims and validity of Christ. They have also been used as an excuse for Christians to distance themselves from the Church.
Why do these three words have such heavy meaning and why do they carry such heavy criticism when levied against Christians? I believe they carry such weight because first they criticism is true and secondly, because those within and outside of Christianity have an extremely unbiblical view of the doctrine of sin. In other words, people at large do not realize how sinful, how truly wretched they are in the eyes of God.
The apostle Paul says in Romans 3:10-11, that there is NONE that does good, not even one! There is none that even seeks after God. In the following verses he goes to explain how wicked men truly are. This is the unsaved man. Jesus even refers to the religious leaders of his day as a brood of vipers. Tim Keller recently said that, “The Christian understanding of sin is much different than people think. I can’t preach a sermon or pray a prayer without sinning.”
I have no problem with the statement that Christians are hypocrites because we all are. The problem I have is the connotation behind the statement. That because Christians are hypocrites it invalidates the truth of the gospel and I can continue to reject God and live in my sin. As Mark Dever brilliantly put it, “Christians may be vipers like the rest of the world. The difference is, they know they are.” The unbeliever refuses to come to the realization that they are wicked and in need of grace. The only difference between Christians and the unbeliever is God’s grace has been given to the believer to know their need of forgiveness, repentance and a Savior. The need for an advocate, Jesus Christ to stand before God and say, “I have absorbed and taken all of the Father’s wrath for this viper, for this hypocrite. They have received in the place of wrath, My righteousness.” This doesn’t mean Christians are better, this doesn’t mean we do not sin anymore. It simply means that God in His grace has pardoned our sin and in it’s place we’ve been given the righteousness of God’s Son. The Christian then seeks to rely on grace in this life to live unto righteousness, until the day of ultimate redemption in heaven where we are freed forever from the bondage of sin. If you realize today that you are a viper in need of grace. Call out to God, repent and believe the gospel.