by James Jacob Prasch
© 2016 Moriel Ministries
So often it is the extremists
that divide the body of Christ and cause unnecessary problems, it really is. You’ve got people who are ultra-Pentecostal
or extreme Charismatics who confuse spirituality with mysticism, who confuse
basic emotion with the leading of the Holy Spirit; emotional impulse. Their doctrinal theology is so often a false
theology based on experience, not based on the Word of God and we know the
Charismatic movement, having been around since the late 1960’s, has never
brought any revival. There was a revival
among the hippies but the Charismatic renewal has not renewed these
denominations. These denominations are
far worse off now than they were a generation ago; they are ordaining homosexuals,
lesbians, and everything else. The
Methodists, the Reformed churches, the Presbyterians, pick any church you want
that had the Charismatic renewal and you would be hard pressed to find one of
them that has been renewed or restored to biblical foundation. Now this is in no way a denial of the
authenticity of Holy Spirit baptism or a properly understood manifestation of
the gifts of the Holy Spirit practiced scripturally. It is just to say, as we pointed out many
times, too much, in fact probably the majority of what we see today, in terms
of Charismatic phenomena, is not genuine charismata but the term Chuck Smith
once coined, “charismania.” The
theological term for charismania, the actual term, again if you don’t know, is
The kind of disorder and chaos you saw at
But, then you see people
reacting to it, even in
Well that same kind of thing is true in many areas. The way the cathedrals and basilicas in the Renaissance were funded was largely through things like the sale of indulgences by the Dominicans. “Now you are saved, now you’re not.” The doctrine of purgatory is nowhere found in scripture so the Roman Catholic Church had to make the apocryphal books part of the Roman Catholic cannon of scripture because there is one verse in Maccabees that says “It is good to pray for the dead.” Now when you understand the context of the book of Maccabees, one it is apocryphal, it is not a basis of doctrine, it is simply biblically important history and literature. But if you look at its context, it meant to pray that the Messiah would come so that the Old Testament saints who were in the bosom of Abraham would be able to enter their eternal reward. It did not mean that they were atoning for sin in purgatory; that was not known to the Jews. Well, that is how they funded the Renaissance. Tetzel would go around and he would say “When a coin into a box rings, a soul from purgatory springs.” And he would say “Oh your poor mother is in purgatory, ‘Sonny, get me out of here,’ she’s burning” and they exploited money out of people. They are very much like the modern televangelists, perverting and corrupting the Word of God, reading things into scripture that are not there simply to extract money out of people for their own designs and programs. They would sell scapulas, they would basically practice religious fetishism, again much the same as Morris Cerullo and his Holy Ghost miracle cloths to take away debt. It is the same kind of thing. This stuff has gone on for centuries. Now you’ve got so-called Evangelicals doing it, the televangelists. The Catholics have always done it, it has always been around.
Well, of course to fund those
kinds of programs, you have to deny the true Gospel. The blood of Christ cannot cleanse from all
sin, you must atone in purgatory for your own.
Now Paul tells us “If an angel of God comes with another gospel don’t
believe it.” Yet, we have one deceiver
after another saying it is okay to believe in Roman Catholicism, even though
they have a different gospel, among other problems. Does His blood cleanse from all sin or do you
atone for your own? It is something very
fundamental, among many other theological problems with Catholicism, it is a
different gospel. They believe that
salvation comes by ex opere operato
rituals called sacraments. Instead of
being justified by faith and saved by grace, they believe in sacramental
soteriology and they believe even the sacraments are not sufficient. You must
atone for your own sin in purgatory. It
is a fundamental denial of the cross, yet we have people saying it is
compatible with Christianity. Once they
say that about Roman Catholicism they will say that about Mormonism. Paul not only says “another gospel” he says
“another Christ.” Well, Mormons have
another Christ. Their Christ is the spirit
brother of Satan. This doesn’t seem to
bother Ravi Zacharias or Craig Hazen from Biola. The real Jesus said “If anybody says I’ve
come back, don’t believe it. I am coming
back the way I left. If they say he has
come back, he is in the wilderness, don’t go there, he is in the inner rooms,
keep away”. But every time there is a Mass they say Jesus has returned
physically under the appearances of bread and wine. They pray to the bread and wine as the
transubstantiated “blessed sacrament.”
They worship it. They actually
pray to it as Christ incarnate. This is
idolatry. This is another Christ. The Eucharistic Christ of Rome is not the
Christ of the scriptures and you have to understand in the Reformation, this is
the thing that most people were murdered for.
This is the thing that most people were murdered for, refusing to accept
transubstantiation. The other was the
Papacy, that the pope is the heir of Peter, which he isn’t. He is the Pontificus Maximus, he is the heir
of the emperor as the head of the pantheon of
You have to also remember that the first generation of reformers were not simply Roman Catholic priests, they were from the intelligentsia of the Roman Catholic Clergy. They were humanist scholars. They knew what the doctrines of Rome were but after the Renaissance, when you had the rise of humanism in Europe, then it was of course a Christian humanism, not a secular one, and they began to come in contact with people who could read Greek, like Erasmus and people who could read Hebrew they realized basic things. Metanoia, the word for repentance, meant to repent, it did not mean the sacrament of penance. Luther realized the whole thing was a lie when he learned this from the French Humanist Vavassure.
So, Protestantism comes
along, but as we point out in the book “The Dilemma of Laodicea”, Protestantism
is very much like the church of Sardis, from the Greek word sarx, of the flesh, having a name for
being alive but being dead. Look at mainstream
Protestantism. Look at the Lutheran Church across the field. Are those people saved? Most of them probably are not. In fact, most of them definitely are not. It is cultural Protestantism, but it has been
like that from the beginning. Ordaining
homosexuals and lesbians, blessing same-sex marriages, this is Protestantism,
this is the World Council of Churches.
It has a name for being alive but it is dead, but right from the
beginning it was wrong. Now, Jesus said
he had some names in
Protestantism has always reacted. So they are trying to build these cathedrals, they are selling indulgences, keeping people in bondage and fear, ‘now you are saved, now you are not,’ no assurance of salvation. Roman Catholicism teaches that if you say you have the assurance of salvation you have committed the sin of presumption. That is what they teach, that is the actual doctrine of the Roman Church, since the Council of Trent at least. To react against this, somebody comes up with unconditional eternal security. Is there eternal security? Absolutely! Is it unconditional? Let us talk about the subject of election, Elektos. What does the Word of God really say?
You can be absolutely sure of your salvation right now, everyone of us. And you can be absolutely sure you can remain eternally secure in it. But does that settle it? Is that what the scripture teaches? Let’s think in terms of a superannuation fund, a pension scheme. In order to be the beneficiary of a pension plan, you must be a member of the scheme. In order to be a beneficiary, in order to have insurance in an insurance plan, you must pay your premiums. If you don’t pay the premiums it does not count, although our present government is telling us otherwise. As long as you pay the premiums you’re sure you are insured. You can have fire insurance, but if somebody commits arson and it is proven to be arson, they don’t have the insurance. As long as you abide by the terms, you can be sure you are insured. You can be secure you are secured. Pay the premiums, abide by the terms, you’re sure. But if you don’t pay the premiums, you don’t abide by the terms, you have broken a contract. Don’t blame the other party, he hasn’t broken the contract, you have. Yet the contract remains valid. As we always point out, the validity of a covenant depends on the faithfulness of God, not the unfaithfulness of man. It is always the fidelity of God, but if you leave the plan, if you pull out of the insurance scheme, although the contract remains valid, you’re not a part of it anymore.
So, to cope with this problem of ‘now you’re saved, now you’re not’, somebody comes up with a plan, an idea, a concept to give people the assurance of salvation that can’t give them the assurance of salvation either. Calvinism teaches, in its real form, that God creates some people to go to heaven and some to go to hell. So while you have a Roman Catholic doing works to get saved, going to Mass, going to a novena, all this kind of stuff—while they are doing things to get saved, a Calvinist is doing things to prove to themselves they are saved. “I must be saved, look what I am doing. I must be one of the elect ones who he created to go to heaven instead of to hell.” Neither one of these forms of mental illness can give people the assurance of salvation. They’ll both drive anybody crazy.
As we pointed out the other
night, John Calvin had nothing to do with the Reformation. The Reformation actually began with Erasmus
of Rotterdam’s publication of the Textus Receptus from four earlier
John Calvin was not even
there when Erasmus published his New Testament. Calvin was a baby when that
thing was coming out, a baby! When
Luther nailed the 95 Theses to the door Calvin was 8 years old. He was not even a second-generation
reformer. He was the third generation
after that. He was influenced by people
like Farrell and by Busser but he had no direct
contact with the Reformation, he had nothing to do with it. It had already happened before he came along
Calvin himself appealed to
the primary doctrinal founder of Roman Catholicism repeatedly as his own role
model. He kept saying when he wrote his Institutes “by the authority of
Augustine” … “by the authority of Augustine.”
Now Augustine was the guy who messed up the Church more than anyone else
at that point. After
Calvinism as Calvin taught it
is founded on something nowhere found in the Word of God. This is what Covenant Theology is. God only
ever made two covenants, one with Adam and one with Abraham; not the old and
new. When you ask, where is that? Where does it say God only ever made two
covenants, one with Adam and one with Abraham?
I mean Jesus said “This is my blood in the new and everlasting covenant.” I can show you where there is an old covenant
and a new, but where do you say God only ever made two covenants? They cannot show you because it is not in
there. Again, they say it is implied, it
is a nomane
in Greek. It is an opinion. It is a deduction based on their own
presuppositions. Calvinism as Calvin
taught it is something that has no scriptural foundation whatsoever. He had nothing whatsoever to do with the
Reformation; he was not even there. He
was a baby. He was a little kid when
that stuff was happening. That is the
reality and he and his followers did some terrible things, including murdering
people and killing people in the name of Jesus.
Jesus kingdom is not of this world but he said, “No, it is.” Reconstructionism, set up a theocratic police
state. They were Theonomists. It is what they did in
There are moderate people who
would claim to be Calvinists. Many of them
don’t really understand what I just told you. They would claim to be Baptists
or Brethren or something like that. Well
the fact of the matter is, if you’re a Baptist, or Brethren, or Pentecostal,
during the Reformation, I pointed this out before, in the 16th
century, you would not even have been considered a Protestant. You would have been called an
Anabaptist. You would have been
persecuted by the Protestants and by the Catholics. A Baptist person or a Pentecostal person, or
a Mennonite person, or a Brethren person, people who held those beliefs, who
held to believer’s baptism, who did not believe in patristic authority; in
other words they did not believe the Church Fathers were doctrine, only the
scripture, who did not believe in a state church, Erastianism, those people
were persecuted by Catholics and Protestants alike. Erasmus wrote about this. He wrote the Pope about it. Erasmus actually wrote the Pope and said it
is the Anabaptists who are the closest thing to the true Christians. Yet you’ve got people running around today,
Baptists, ignorantly claiming to be Calvinists, when in fact, Calvin and his
followers burned Anabaptists. Some of
them were crazy; there were all kinds of Anabaptists, there were good ones and
bad ones. I recall when I was once with
my wife in
Do you know what the Church
of England, the Anglicans did to Baptists?
What the Protestants did to Baptists in
We have these moderate
Calvinistic people and I would say, all right, one of them would say “A
backslider was never saved to begin with; therefore they must get saved. They must repent and believe.” A Wesleyan-Arminian person would say “Maybe
you’re right, maybe they were never saved to begin with, but if they were, they
are not saved now, they have fallen away, they need to repent.” Either way, both agree they are not saved
now, that is primary. Either way, both
believe they need to repent; that is what is secondary. Whether or not they were saved to begin with
is tertiary, it is an academic argument, it does not matter that much. Both of them agree they are not saved now and
they need to repent. I can handle
that. I can handle moderate Calvinists
like Charles Spurgeon, or like William Carey.
The problem is, Spurgeon and more so, William Carey, they were opposed
by the extreme Calvinists. When William
Carey wanted to send missionaries to
Ezekiel 18:23 - "Do I have any pleasure in the death of the wicked," declares the Lord God, "rather than that he should turn from his ways and live?
He is wanting none to perish, but that all come to repentance. Does Ezekiel or Peter sound like God wants people to go to hell? Jesus said hell was a place created for Satan and his angels. It was made for devils, not for people. Hell was not created for people. Nobody has to go there when Jesus paid the price for their sin. Now it is right to say that nobody can come to Jesus unless the Father draws him but Jesus said “If I be lifted up I will draw all men.” But not all men will respond to that drawing. Calvinism denies that free will was restored at the cross, do you understand? Man lost his free will because of sin. It is restored in Christ. Unsaved people have no choice; they must sin. The most they can choose is how, when, where, but not if. Because of the Holy Spirit Christians don’t have to, we have a choice. Well, let’s understand this.
philosophical, this idea that God made people to go to hell. Why did Calvin have the Taliban and the Mutawa,
a theocratic police state? If they
didn’t like the way your wife wore her hair they could arrest her and they
would publically flog your wife and you couldn’t do anything about it. All this stuff, trying to control everybody’s
life. Why did they behave like the
Taliban? They did this because
philosophically, Calvinism is not Judeo-Christian, Calvinism is philosophically
Islamic. Moslems call it Insha’Allah, anything that happens is
God’s perfect will. Ezekiel says “I take
no pleasure in the death of the wicked.”
“It is not my perfect will; I’d rather they repented.” But instead of believing the Word of God,
Calvinism believes Islam, at least they believe the same lying spirit that
controls Islam. Understand, there is a
lying spirit that controls Islam and it is the same spirit that controls
Calvinism. That is why they did the same
thing as the Moslems with the Jihads.
The Calvinists had jihads. They
did the same stuff, because of the same philosophy. The Imams in
The first lie of Calvinism: Let’s begin in verse 10:
Romans 9:10-18 And not only this, but there was Rebecca (Rivka) also, when she had conceived twins by one man, our father Isaac; for though the twins were not yet born, and had not done anything good or bad, in order that God's purpose according to His choice might stand, not because of works, but because of Him who calls, it was said to her, "The older will serve the younger." Just as it is written, "Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated." What shall we say then? There is no injustice with God, is there? May it never be! For He says to Moses, "I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion." So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy. (It’s all his sovereign grace and choice, they say). For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, "For this very purpose I raised you up, to demonstrate My power in you, and that My name might be proclaimed throughout the whole earth." So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires.
“You see, he makes some for heaven and some for hell” they say. Let’s continue reading:
Romans 9:19-21 You will say to me then, "Why does He still find fault? For who resists His will?" On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, "Why did you make me like this," will it? Or does not the potter have a right over the clay, to make from the same lump one vessel for honorable use, and another for common use?
“You see, he’s the potter with the clay; he makes one for heaven, one for hell,” that’s what they tell you, don’t they?
Now let us look at that text in context and then we will turn to the co-text that it is quoting from the Old Testament: Romans 9, 10 and 11. The context is the prophetic and salvific relationship theologically between the Church and Israel. The relationship between Israel and the Church is the context and the theme of Romans 9, 10 and 11. It fits right in and follows through what Paul was saying earlier, “Jacob I loved, Esau I hated.” Look with me please to Genesis 25. Let’s look now at the co-text: Rebecca (Rivka) is expecting …
Genesis 25:23 And the LORD said to her, "Two nations are in your womb; And two peoples shall be separated from your body;
and Esau are corporate solidarities, a personification of the Jewish and Arab
nations, in fact. What you see happening
Let’s look at Jeremiah 18 at the potter and the clay:
Jeremiah 18:1-10 The word which came to Jeremiah from the LORD saying, "Arise and go down to the potter's house, and there I shall announce My words to you." Then I went down to the potter's house, and there he was, making something on the wheel. But the vessel that he was making of clay was spoiled in the hand of the potter; so he remade it into another vessel, as it pleased the potter to make. Then the word of the LORD came to me saying, "Can I not, O house of Israel, deal with you as this potter does?" declares the LORD. "Behold, like the clay in the potter's hand, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel. (At one moment I might speak concerning an individual? NO!) I might speak concerning a nation or concerning a kingdom to uproot, to pull down, or to destroy it; if that nation against which I have spoken turns from its evil, I will relent concerning the calamity I planned to bring on it. "Or at another moment I might speak concerning a nation or concerning a kingdom to build up or to plant it; if it does evil in My sight by not obeying My voice, then I will think better of the good with which I had promised to bless it.
things: One, it is talking about
nations, not individuals. Both Romans 9,
10, and 11 are talking about nations, not individuals and the co-text of
Jeremiah is talking about nations. It is
not talking about people! It’s just like
Augustine changing one word—“The field is the Church instead of the
world.” All you’ve got to do is change
one word! I remember Rodney
Howard-Browne did that with Corinthians.
He said “The natural man does not understand the things of the
spirit.” No, it says the natural
mind…. The natural man is unsaved
people. He changes man to mind on the
“Clowning in Tongues” video with Copeland so “We can be crazy, don’t try to
understand this rationally.” He changes
one word and gives it an entirely different meaning. Augustine changes one word, the Calvinists
change one word, from nations to person.
The devil is sharp, every word that proceeds from…. They all like to
focus on one text that supports them, just like the Jehovah’s Witnesses or the
Catholics with John 6. But the scripture
tells us “The sum of Thy word is truth.”
Text, context, co-text, otherwise it is all a pretext. Well, let’s look at it, that is the first
thing. It is talking about nations, not
people. Neither Romans 9, nor Jeremiah
18, which Romans 9 explains are talking about people. Secondly, he makes
something else from the same lump of clay.
No, Replacement Theology, the Church comes from Israel—that is exactly
what Paul says in Romans 9, 10 and 11. God is not finished with Israel and the
Jews, he makes a new covenant with the House of Israel and the House of Judah,
Jeremiah 31. Understand, not all
Calvinists believe this, but Doctrinaire Calvinism is Replacement Theology. It is Supercessionism, it believes the Church
the third thing. “If the nation repents,
I will relent.” Literally, “I will
repent.” “But if the nation does evil,
then I will think twice about the good I was going to do.” He
does not arbitrarily relegate to perdition.
He does not make some for heaven and some for hell. It is based on their own actions, and if they
go against him, whether or not they repent.
He does not arbitrarily bring these judgments. A God of love is going to create people to
torture them forever? This is
craziness! If you believe crazy things,
you’ll do crazy things. That is why they
Exodus 3:19 "But I know that the king of Egypt will not permit you to go, except under compulsion.
God knew where Pharaoh was at and what Pharaoh was going to do, but then in Chapter 7:3:
Exodus 7:3: "But I will harden Pharaoh's heart”
God does not arbitrarily harden Pharaoh’s heart. God only gives him over to that after he hardens his own heart. Just like in Romans chapter 1 with the homosexuals and lesbians, he gives them over to it. He didn’t predestine them to be it, he said don’t be it! He doesn’t arbitrarily do this. Calvinism, like Islam, makes God the author of evil. That is why Arminians reacted to it. It makes God the author of sin and death. It is crazy. Well let’s go further with this. Look at Ephesians, Chapter 1:
Ephesians 1:5-8: He predestined [The Greek word is very interesting, proorizo. In 1 Peter, predestined from the Greek, it is translated predestined, is proginosko, like the medical term.] He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace, which He lavished upon us.
Same thing in Titus chapter 1 verse 1:
Titus 1:1: “Paul, a bond-servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the faith of those elected [eklektos] of God and the knowledge of the truth which is according to godliness…”
Those—whenever it speaks of election it is always plural. The only individual who is elect is Jesus. He is God’s elect in the singular. If we are in Christ, we corporately are elect because the Church is the body of Christ, the bridegroom and the bride. You marry a rich guy, now you’re rich. One flesh, body of Christ, his Church, joined to Jesus. You leave your husband and go find a boyfriend and he’s a bum on the dole, you’re not rich any more. It is always corporate. Always! Look at Romans chapter 11:
Romans 11:28: From the standpoint of the gospel they [that is Israel] are enemies for your sake, but from the standpoint of God's election they are beloved for the sake of the fathers.
Romans 11:29: For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.
error of Cessationism and the error of Replacementism are two aspects of the same wrong
thinking. There is no chapter division
in the Greek text. Chapter 12 talks
about spiritual gifts, including charismatic gifts, doesn’t it? Before that it is talking about
remains elect, but it is only the Jews who accept Jesus as their Messiah who
are part of the elect. The others are
cut off from their tree. Non-Jews who
accept Jesus are grafted into it. Now
they are part of the elect, but it remains the elect,
Colossians 3:12: And so, as those who have been chosen [elected, those].
1 Timothy 5:21: I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus and of His chosen angels, to maintain these principles without bias, do nothing in a spirit of partiality.
not partial and He doesn’t want us to be partial. He is willing to forgive anybody, to save
Romans 8:33: Who will bring a charge against God's elect?
That’s not about you or about me, it is about us! If you work for a company with the labor union, for you to be a beneficiary of the contract, you have to be a member of the union. If you’re not in the union, don’t expect any representation from the union. Now, in my own view, unions are something that began good and ended bad. They wound up, in my own view, exploiting and working against the interest of people they were founded to help, like the feminist movement. It began as good and then became something that oppresses women. Well so do unions but it’s just the concept of the union. To benefit from it you have to be in it. The difference is, unlike unions, God will never turn against the ones he is out to benefit. He is not like the union bosses; but, then it goes on.
Luke 18:7 Now shall not God bring about justice for His elect [corporate].
You want justice, you have to be part of the elect.
1 Thessalonians 1:4 Knowing brethren, beloved by God, his election of you. [You, plural].
2 Peter 1:10 Therefore, brethren, be all the more diligent to make certain about his calling and choosing.
Make certain of your calling and choosing. Make sure you are part of the elect! Have you paid your premium? Yes, you’re covered. Did you pay your dues? Yes, you’re protected. Make certain—are you walking with Christ? Yes. You’re alright, you’re alright, you’re covered. You can be eternally secure, just abide by the terms. Make your election sure. “Well, what about predestination?” Good question! What about it? Let’s look what it really says:
2 Timothy 1:9 God, who saved us and called us, with a holy calling, not according to our works but according to his own purpose and grace, which was granted us in Christ Jesus from all eternity.
has to do with our calling! What I am
doing now is something God predestined me to do. What you do, your ministry, whatever God’s
called you to do, you were predestined to do it. Predestination has to do with calling, it is
not the same as salvation. We were saved
to go to heaven but we were saved to fulfil a calling in this life that was
predestined. If I was not predestined to
do this, I would probably be a business man or I would probably be working in
the music industry in business, or I would be a medical scientist, but I was
predestined to do this. Whatever you do,
you’re predestined. Predestination is about your calling. Now whether or not we are faithful in
fulfilling that calling is another issue.
They cannot show you a single place where God predestined some people to
go to heaven and some to go to hell.
They cannot show you a single place where an individual is elect, unless
he is part of the corporate. Paul says
to make these things sure, make your election sure. You can be sure of it. It is not like the Roman Church says you
can’t, neither is it like the Calvinists say, we are elect. The body of Christ is elect.
with the Jews. “If you believed Moses,
you’d believe me also.” If a Jew really
believes the Torah, if he really believes Moses and the Prophets he will know
Jesus is the Messiah. I’ve said this
many times, the problem with unbelieving Jewish people, and again my family is
Jewish, it is not that they reject Jesus.
It is not that they don’t believe Jesus, that is the result of the
problem. The problem is they don’t
believe Moses and the Prophets, they don’t believe the Torah. It’s not that they don’t believe the New
Testament, that is the result of the problem.
The problem is they don’t believe the Old Testament, because if they
believed the Old Testament they would know the New Testament is the truth! If they really believed Moses, they would
believe Jesus (Yeshua) is the Mashiach, the Messiah. Yet they’re Jewish but they are not in the
Israel of God, as it says in Galatians.
It doesn’t say work for your salvation, you can’t earn it, it was a gift. You don’t work for your salvation, it says “Work out your salvation in fear and trembling.” He’s not going to take it back, but if you take it off, I hope you’re a real good swimmer. You still have to act on what you have received, then you’re guaranteed to make it. If you act on what you have received, you are guaranteed to make it, you have God’s guarantee! You can be secure, you can be assured you are going to heaven. No question, if you act on it. Did you earn it? No, of course you didn’t earn it, we can’t earn it, its a gift! But we have to act on it.
The other example I use is the little boy whose hobby was building models of battleships. You’ve got to read the instructions. The Word of God—we have to work it out. No, you don’t work for it but you work it out. It is quite simple; it is quite straightforward, theologically. But it gets so screwed up philosophically. Understand, Calvinism is philosophical, it is not truly theological, it’s philosophical. John Calvin was a 16th century humanist, to the degree it is spiritual, it has the same spirit as Islam, Insha’Allah … everything that happens is God’s perfect will. No it is not! “Don’t you believe God is sovereign?” Yeah, he’s so sovereign he can limit his own sovereignty. We can’t restrict God but he can restrict himself. Election is always corporate. Election is corporate, not individual. He limits his own sovereignty. He gives us a say in the matter because he chooses to do so. He wants sons and daughters, not robots. He could have had robots but he didn’t want robots, he wanted children. He limits his own sovereignty. Nobody can restrict God, but he can restrict himself. God is so powerful and so sovereign; he can actually cause himself to forget. He says that for the sake of his son he will cause himself to forget our sin! He is so powerful he can actually intentionally and deliberately cause himself an eternal lapse of memory. We looked at this the other night when we studied Nomane. You can’t build doctrine on opinion. Two, you can’t contradict what’s in scripture with opinion, and three, you can’t divide over opinion. Calvinism does all three. The more Calvinistic they are, the more screwed up they become. It messes people up spiritually and even psychologically. The real tragedy is, because of the charismania, the neo-Montanism, people are going to that stuff. John McArthur—“You can worship the Antichrist and take the mark of the beast and still go to heaven.” They are trying to react against crazy people, they don’t see that they become crazy themselves!