August 2, 2008

Desiring More Than God?

I was thinking this morning about the whole doctrine of election and predestination. Here is what got me to thinking about this particular doctrine:

"If God is the one who has "double predestined" everyone either to heaven or hell, how is it then that I have a greater desire for others on this earth to enter into a personal relationship with God, than God himself does?"

I mean as a follower of Christ, I truly hope that EVERYONE is saved from sin and brings joy to the heart of our God and Savior, but yet according to Calvinist God seems to want or desire only a select few to enter into his presence for all eternity. This means that I have a greater desire for others to be saved than God himself does! Does this not strike anyone as just plain odd!!? I mean if predestination is true, then God really doesn't desire everyone to be saved, but only those he has predestined! How is it then we as followers of Christ have a greater desire for others to be saved from the torment of sin than the very Godhead does? This cannot be so!

I once heard evangelist and teacher, Gordon Olson once say that he converted from Calvinism as a result of an experience he had while preaching one Sunday. During his sermon he had a thought that shook him to the core. He realized that according to his present theology of Calvinism he had a greater desire to see others in his congregation to be saved than God himself did. Gordon realized there was something tremendously wrong with that sort of thinking and began to re-evaluate his theology. He came to understand that any theology whereby man could somehow desire his fellow mankind to repent and be saved more than God, had some real problems.

So for those who embrace Calvinism and yearn to see men saved, you need to ask yourself this question: Do YOU have a greater desire for men to be saved than what your doctrine puts forth??? Do you have a greater desire or love of your fellow man than your current image put forth by your doctrine? Do you question why you have a greater desire to see men saved or desire for revival and grieve why God has not yet moved?? The issue is not that your desires betray you, but that your theology has created a false image of the Godhead!


Anonymous said...

Double-predestination is not taught in Calvinism. God does not arbitrarily elect some to hell and some to heaven. Like many who argue against Calvnism you have failed to study the facts. You do not have a greater desire to see some saved more than God.

Preston N said...

Anonymous - Let's say for example I have to paint 4 rooms within my house. However, I only have two colors in which to choose from, black or red. Those are the only colors I have available in which to choose from. To make matters worse I only have enough paint of each color to paint two out of the four rooms. Now, logical deduction would tell me that regardless of which rooms I pick to paint, by logical deduction the other two rooms automatically become the other color.

The same applies for predestination. If God simply just picks only the elect and not the damned, then logically he has by deduction automatically picked the damned. Just because God only selects the "elect" doesn't mean he's off the hook for not picking the "damned". Besides, predestination is not simply a matter of God picking and choosing, but it goes beyond that. God is the Creator of every soul ever created. Therefore, according to Calvinist, God in accordance to his foreknowledge creates that which he already knows and wills.

Here is what a leading Calvinistic scholar, Loraine Boettner says about predestination (determinism)in his paper "The Foreknowledge of God":

Foreknowledge must not be confused with foreordination. Foreknowledge presupposes foreordination, but is not itself foreordination. The actions of free agents do not take place because they are foreseen, but they are foreseen because they are certain to take placce...........Since God's foreknowledge is complete, He knows the destiny of every person, not merely before the person has made his choice in this life, but from eternity. And since He knows their destiny before they are created, and then proceeds to create, it is plain that the saved and the lost alike fulfill His plan for them; for if He did not plan that any particular ones should be lost, He could at least refrain from creating them.
We conclude, then, that the Christian doctrine of the Foreknowledge of God proves also His Predestination.

According to Calvinism we see that nothing, not even the very choices men and women make here on earth is done by choice or by liberty, but is fated or destined by God. The very clothes you put on this morning had nothing to do with your freewill, but rather it was part of God's destiny that he determined before ever creating the world. Many Calvinist want to twist logic into saying that mankind is yet free and yet predestined, but clearly this violates reason and logic. This is like trying to rationalize that something canbe black and white at the same time, or something can be true or false - at the same time, or you can be in motion and yet not in motion at the same time. Calvinism more often than not, requires some real logical gymnastics of the mind.

Also, here is what John Calvin himself had to say regarding predestination:

Calvin’s Institutes of Religion:
Book 3 Chapt 21, Paragraph 5

Clavins states the following:

"All are not created on equal terms, but some are preordained to eternal life, others to eternal damnation; and, accordingly, as each has been created for one or other of these ends, we say that he has been predestinated to life or to death."

I am not sure what version of Calvinism your beleiving in, but it sounds to me you have neither a firm grasp of the material here my friend or your just not comfortable admitting what your doctrine really adhere's too.

So Anonymous, indeed your correct I don't have a greater desire for others to be saved than God, but God so loved the world (not just the elect!) that he sent his only begotten Son, that WHOM SO EVER believeth (not just the elect) in HIM should NOT PERISH, but have everlasting life.

Anonymous said...

I never said I was a Calvinist. You can quote anyone you want but I prefer Scripture. God was under no obligation to choose any.

Preston said...

Anonymous - You stated:

"Double-predestination is not taught in Calvinism. God does not arbitrarily elect some to hell and some to heaven. Like many who argue against Calvnism you have failed to study the facts."

Calvinism my friend is not taught in the Bible. One must first be taught Calvinism in order to contrive such presuppisitions or notions out of the bible as presented by this systematic theology.

On one hand you argue with me that double predestination does not exist in Calvinism, but yet I quote directly from John Calvin that it does indeed exist within that particular system. Deny it all you want too, but predestination is the foundation on which that system is built. I also quote you a leading Calvinist scholar and again your saying Calvinism does not believe in double predestination???

Granted you might not be a Calvinist, but I suggest you study the fathers of this doctrine a little bit more as Augustine, John Calvin and Martin Luther all believed in double predestination.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your words. I do not need to study the fathers of Calvinism to understand the doctrine. I am a biblicist and do not follow the teachings of men unless they line up with Scripture. I contend that the Scripture does not teach double predestination. YHve a great weekend at your church services and may many come to etrnal life.

Anonymous said...


Augustine did not Believe in Double predestination, He believed that God elected those who would be saved, but that those who go to hell go there because of their own sin and rejection of God.

Calvin took it one step further and taught double predestination.

I don't know about Luther on this one.