Calvinism–Doctrines of Grace or Doctrines of Demons?

I received a most interesting question about Bible study tools that I thought should be brought to the attention of everyone.

Here is the question:

Hello, Jerry. The main question I have had on the NET Bible is, does it work well with the crgb (Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible)? I think I am making a wise investment in it, don’t you? thank you

The simple answer would be “Yes.” And “Yes.”

But I went into far more detail. I trust in this instance at least, it is not true that “The Devil is in the details”!

Before I share my answer (a bit expanded here), I must say that the NET Bible is allowed on Robinson Crusoe’s Desert Island since it is an unbiased Bible study resource, not intentionally slanted to favor any particular denomination.

For new readers, let me explain that I use the metaphor of Robinson Crusoe’s Island to reflect the important truth that to learn what the Bible teaches, you must read the Bible for yourself apart from denominational influences. Or cult literature influences. Or Calvinistic influences. On Robinson Crusoe’s Desert Island one can read in isolation at length from a plain text Bible to learn what the Bible really has to say.

I also speak of the “Robinson Crusoe Desert Island Test,” and by this test I mean could a reader of a plain text Bible arrive at the system of doctrine someone else is advocating? If not, the doctrine is suspect, and may not actually be the teaching of the Bible (though upon deeper Bible study it might be found to be true).

As an aside, I find it strikingly interesting that Google searches for a test on the novel by Daniel Defoe, The Adventures of Robinson Crusoe are reflected in many visits to this site. Now if someone really needs an actual comprehension test on that novel, as a retired English teacher I may just have such a test in my files. If not, I surely know how to produce one, though just now my time is occupied in expanding the cross references available for Real Bible Study, and as of today, I am only as far as Ezekiel chapter 36.

Now to what I wrote to answer the writer’s question:

In my limited experience using the CRGB [Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible] with the NET Bible, I have found the Cross Reference Guide works even better with the NET Bible than it does with the KJV [King James Version, to which the Cross Reference Guide is actually keyed]. If you can afford the investment, get both editions of the NET Bible, the one with 60,000+ notes and the larger print “reader’s edition” with far fewer notes. I bought both and am glad I did. I would not want to be without the edition with the full notes, for they are very helpful. They do not contain any devotional fluff, far as I’ve noticed.

Dr. Malcolm Lavender’s forthcoming (2012) translation of the New Testament will be of great help for more accurate Bible study and understanding for it more accurately represents distinctions in Greek grammar and syntax not conveyed in our present English translations, and is not hampered by prior commitment to the false system of doctrine called “Calvinism.” The translators of the NET Bible, especially the leading Greek scholar [Dr. Daniel Wallace, if I recall correctly] who headed the project, appear totally committed to the Calvinist position.

Remember that I have told you I was raised in a semi-Calvinist background at Highland Park Baptist Church in Detroit. I once might have thought myself to be a four-point Calvinist (having never accepted the doctrine of limited atonement), though when I was a new Christian I did not dwell on such things at all. The Sunday School superintendent of the Junior Department where I first taught Sunday School there once asked me what I believed about such matters, and I innocently told him I had never come across such things in my reading of the Bible so I did not know anything about them.

Now I know better. ALL five points of Calvinism are utter and full-blown HERESY, and are NOT the teaching of the Bible at all.

Because the doctrines of Calvinism are heresy, I have called them “doctrines of demons.” Paul warned Timothy in 1 Timothy 4:1 that in later times men would depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of demons. Is there anything in the immediate context which justifies applying this stricture to Calvinism? I believe there is. Paul states in 1 Timothy 4:10 that “we trust in the living God, who is the savior of all men, especially of those that believe.” Such a statement is incompatible with the doctrine of limited atonement, and conflicts with other aspects of Calvinism. Calvinism is a heresy. We in the Christian faith do not hesitate to condemn Arians and their modern counterparts as teaching heresy when they deny the full deity of our Lord Jesus Christ. Such false doctrine is the mark of a false cult. Until now most of us have hesitated to declare Calvinism to be what it is: a system of mistaken doctrines that are contrary to Scripture rightly interpreted and understood. I furnish the Biblical evidence for this charge of heresy in my exposition below. All false doctrines can ultimately be traced, when systematically spread by man-made religious systems, to Satan, and are called by Paul “doctrines of demons.”

(1) Total Depravity, more honestly called Total Inability, is a very mistaken false doctrine. The middle voice and the imperative mood of Greek grammar will not allow for such nonsense. God holds each of us accountable to obey his commands. By using the imperative mode God addresses our intellect and our will. God is not commanding something that it is impossible for us to do, neither is His command something to which we cannot respond. God’s command to us today is to repent and believe the Gospel. God’s command to us is to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ (1 John 3:23). It is up to us to do the believing; God does not do that for us. That is something we must do in order to be saved, and it involves an act of our free will. There is no such thing in the Bible as total bondage of the will. We have a choice to make, and if we don’t make a choice, we have chosen not to believe (John 3:18).

Total Depravity seems on the surface to be a Biblical doctrine, for surely “all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). But Calvinists go further than this: they claim man is so fallen that he cannot respond to the Gospel and choose to believe on our Lord Jesus Christ when presented with or upon reading the truth in the New Testament.

1Jn 3:23 And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment.

Joh 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

(2) Unconditional Election. No such thing is taught in the Bible. God is not willing that any should perish (2 Peter 3:9). This doctrine of Calvinism is one of the doctrines of demons Paul writes about (1 Timothy 4:1). There is no such thing as a general call and an effectual call of the Holy Spirit. Such a distinction is an invention of theologians, necessitated by their mistaken theology. Such a belief comes close to or actually is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit of God, for it makes Him deceitful, because it teaches the Holy Spirit calls everyone generally, but that no one can respond to this call. The effectual call of the Holy Spirit is made only to the Elect, and only they can and unfailingly will respond to that call. The general call cannot be responded to (which makes the Holy Spirit a liar for issuing a call He must know cannot be responded to), even if an individual wants to respond to it, because they are not among the select few who are the preordained elect. They are destined to hell forever and can do nothing to change that destiny. Such is not the teaching of the Bible, which declares that “whosoever will may come” (Revelation 22:17), and that “God so loved the world” (John 3:16) which includes everyone. No Calvinist can honestly accept the teaching of John 3:16, for they must go elsewhere in Scripture outside that text and its immediate context to re-interpret “world” to mean “the world of the elect.” No Calvinist has ever exegeted John 3:16 according to all the grammatical features present in the Greek text of that verse! No Calvinist has ever produced a verse or verses from Scripture to prove the Holy Spirit issues a general call to which no one can actually respond: this is an invention of Calvinism, not the teaching of the Bible.

2Pe 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

1Ti 4:1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

“Doctrines of devils” is better translated “doctrines of demons,” as in the ASV (American Standard Version), for there is actually only one Devil, but he has many demons.

Rev 22:17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

Joh 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Under this head (unconditional election) Calvinists include their false doctrine of Predestination. They teach that there are an elect few who are predestined to be saved, chosen by God before the foundation of the world on the basis of absolutely nothing that they may or may not do, while all others are predestined to eternity in hell, regardless of what they may or may not do to secure a better destiny by believing the message of the Bible.

But in Scripture predestination is never used with reference to our eternal destiny of heaven or hell, but is used to declare that God has predestined us who believe on Christ to become like Christ in our character (Romans 8:29), to whose character the Holy Spirit works in our lives to conform us to (Galatians 5:16, 18, 22, 23): we are predestined to become like Christ, to be made in his image, to be transformed by regenerative change to his likeness (Titus 3:5. 2 Corinthians 5:17).

Rom_8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.

Gal 5:16 This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.

Gal 5:18 But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law.

Gal 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
Gal 5:23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Tit 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

2Co 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

Note most carefully that the fruit of the Spirit is not said to be the result of keeping the Law of God, or keeping the Ten Commandments or even the Seventh-day Sabbath (the only Sabbath known to Scripture), but it is the fruit of the Holy Spirit producing these qualities of Christian character as the Holy Spirit directs and leads our lives as we trust in Christ and feed ourselves spiritually from the written Word of God by means engaging in the Real Bible Study emphasized here (Romans 8:9-16. 2 Peter 3:18).

Rom 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
Rom 8:10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.
Rom 8:11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.
Rom 8:12 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.
Rom 8:13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.
Rom 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
Rom 8:15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
Rom 8:16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:

2Pe 3:18 But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.

Again the doctrine of Calvinism is NOT the doctrine of Scripture, but the doctrine of demons. Calvinistic doctrine denies the very purpose of the death of Christ and the power of the blood of Christ to remove sin in this life. Consequently, Calvinists deny the doctrine of holiness, and teach Christians will not be made holy until after they die and get to heaven. But in the Greek text of the New Testament, although there is a form of the Greek verb “to make holy” available which conveys or marks the future tense, the verb “to make holy” or “to be holy” NEVER appears in the future tense in the New Testament. That means if we are ever to be holy, we must be and become holy in this life. That this is a most important salvation issue is directly stated in the New Testament at Hebrews 12:14,

Heb 12:14 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:

(3) Limited Atonement is contrary to the repeated and explicit statements in the Bible, “and that He died for all….” (2 Corinthians 5:15). One familiar with the Bible would hardly need to be given an argument that goes any further than that to demonstrate the Satanic error and inspiration of this false doctrine of demons.

2Co 5:15 And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.

Calvinists not only limit the extent of the Atonement of Christ in their claim it is only for the Elect, but they also limit the effect of the Atonement by declaring it accomplishes no more than the blood of the Levitical sacrifices of the Old Testament, since just like the Levitical sacrifices, the Atonement of Christ does no more for us to remove sin from the believer in this life than did the blood of the Levitical animals shed in the Old Testament.

This is the result of their false doctrine of the Atonement, the Penal Satisfaction Theory, which teaches what the Bible never asserts, that Christ died to pay the penalty for our sin, that Christ was punished on the Cross for our sins. That may well be what Augustine and Anselm taught about the Atonement of Christ, that may well be what some of my favorite hymns declare, but it is not what the Bible teaches. The Calvinists teach the blood of Christ does not now remove our sins in this life; rather, they teach the righteousness of Christ is imputed to us, a legal fiction not taught in Scripture (Hebrews 10:4, 11).

The Bible rather teaches the Priestly-Sacrificial Atonement, where Jesus is both the priest who bore our sin and the sacrifice for our sin. See 1 John 2:2.

Heb 10:4 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins.

Heb 10:11 And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins:
Heb 10:12 But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;
Heb 10:13 From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool.
Heb 10:14 For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.

Heb 9:26 For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.
Heb 9:27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:
Heb 9:28 So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.

1Jn 2:2 And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.

The concept of “propitiation” is foreign to the Bible, and is a very bad translation. God does not need to be propitiated; that is a pagan and heathen concept. The NET Bible among other translations more properly reads:

1Jn 2:2 and he himself is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for our sins but also for the whole world.

(4) Irresistible Grace. This teaching asserts that the elect will unfailingly respond to the effectual call of the Holy Spirit. Included in this false doctrine is the fallacy that we are saved before we can believe. This absolutely is the teaching of Calvinism, which shows they have things exactly backwards, as the devil who is a liar from the beginning always does (John 8:44). Steven in his sermon in Acts chapter seven clearly spoke to the Jewish leaders and said of them, “Ye do always resist the Holy Spirit” (Acts 7:51). It is possible to resist the Holy Spirit, and it is our responsibility to respond to the Holy Spirit’s prompting to believe the Gospel. There is no Scripture, properly interpreted according to the 23 Rules of Interpretation I have placed in the October 2010 archives here, that teaches any such thing as the doctrine of Irresistible Grace.

God holds us responsible to respond to the teaching in His Word in the Bible by an act of our will, by our conscious choice (absolutely proven in Greek grammar by the middle voice which shows we have an active part and responsibility to obey, and the use of the subjunctive mood which states a contingency which we must meet to be truly saved, two aspects of Greek grammar that Calvinists tend to suppress, deny, and in this connection seem to have very little to say about).

Joh 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

Act 7:51 Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye.

(5) Perseverance of the saints. This is the final doctrine of demons marked by the acronym “TULIP,” a set of five doctrines falsely called “The Doctrines of Grace.”

No reader of a plain text Bible on Robinson Crusoe’s Desert Island with all the time alone in the world to fully devote to studying, like the Robinson Crusoe in the literary classic The Adventures of Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe had, even if possessed of the “three good Bibles” Robinson salvaged from the chests of the shipwrecked sailors, could ever come up with these doctrines.

The Calvinist doctrine of the perseverance of the saints asserts that true saints, those who are really included in the number of the elect, will unfailingly persevere in faith and be finally saved. Those who depart from the faith, who fall away, were never included among the elect of God.

Many Calvinists not well taught in their doctrine have misunderstood this teaching of Calvinism themselves. Calvinists of the Reformed Faith properly do not believe or teach eternal security or “Once Saved, Always Saved,” for such teachings are both contrary to Scripture and Calvinism, and cannot properly be equated with the “Perseverance of the Saints.”

Other more watered-down Calvinists have morphed the doctrine of the Perseverance of the Saints into another false doctrine of unconditional eternal security, commonly referred to as “Once Saved, Always Saved.”

The doctrine of “Once Saved, Always Saved,” is a false doctrine that is totally contrary to Scripture. It is plainly contrary to Scripture because it denies another doctrine clearly taught in all of Scripture, the doctrine of the possibility and danger of apostasy (2 Peter 3:17). When you must deny one doctrine of the Bible to hold to another doctrine of the Bible, you are contradicting the Bible.

The “Once saved, always saved” doctrine is plainly contrary to Scripture because it conflicts with the facet of the Greek verb called “aspect.” The Greek verb in the present tense includes the idea of continuing action. In John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him…” indicates by “believeth” that continuing faith, not a one time act of faith, is being spoken of in this and in all New Testament promises of eternal life premised upon our believing in Christ.

Many Bible readers who unwittingly have accepted the teachings of Calvinism have fallen into the mistake of supposing that any person who falls away from the faith never had the true faith to begin with. They base that upon a misinterpretation of 1 John 2:19.

The truth of the matter in the Greek New Testament is quite plain. There are separate Greek words for our one English word “know.” One of the words pretty much means what the English word “know” does. Another Greek word is that same word augmented by a prepositional prefix which means to possess full and accurate knowledge. A third and altogether different word in Greek is used to represent intuitive knowledge that cannot be improved upon by learning more, whereas both of the other words allow for more learning.

Jesus told the Jews that they did not know God; he used the ordinary word for “know” (G1097). But in almost the same breath Jesus told them that he did know God, and Jesus used the third word for “know”(G1492) which indicated he had full and intuitive knowledge of God, whereas the Jews did not even know what they could have learned of God as through the study of the Scripture (John 8:55).

The false teachers mentioned in 2 Peter 2:20 had the kind of knowledge the second Greek word I’m referring to specifies, the augmented word (G1922), which plainly indicates they had full and accurate knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is an error to suppose that these teachers were not saved, or to suggest they had a “head knowledge” but not a “heart knowledge.” The use of the Greek words as employed by Peter forbids such interpretations; if that were what Peter meant, he would have used the word for “know” in its plain form rather than augmented form. I have marked these things out in the notes in my book, The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge. I first learned of these distinctions as a new Christian when I bought and used Darby’s New Translation, for he explains these nicely at several points in the footnotes to his translation (see note “l” at 1 Corinthians 8:1, for example), though he does not use this information to make the points I have made.

2Pe 3:17 Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness.

Note that this warning is addressed by Peter to believers, addressed as “beloved.” The warning is to beware, lest believers be led away with the error of the wicked. This means to succumb to the false teachings of the wicked. Note Peter warns that it is possible to “fall from your own stedfastness.” Clearly, stedfastness is not possessed by unbelievers, but by believers!

1Jn 2:19 They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.

Joh 8:55 Yet ye have not known him; but I know him: and if I should say, I know him not, I shall be a liar like unto you: but I know him, and keep his saying.

The New Testament teaches that it is possible to be guilty of doctrinal apostasy and it is possible to be guilty of moral apostasy. An example of doctrinal apostasy would be those who teach “another Gospel, which is not another” as declared by Paul in Galatians 1:6-9. Anyone who would believe and teach “another gospel” is guilty of apostasy and is not saved, or no longer saved (Galatians 5:4). The parameters of moral apostasy are quite fully stated in 1 Corinthians 6:9, 10 and similar passages. Anyone who practices the sins named by Paul in this list “shall not inherit the kingdom of God.”

Gal 1:6 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:
Gal 1:7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.
Gal 1:8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.
Gal 1:9 As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

1Co 6:9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived! The sexually immoral, idolaters, adulterers, passive homosexual partners, practicing homosexuals,
1Co 6:10 thieves, the greedy, drunkards, the verbally abusive, and swindlers will not inherit the kingdom of God.
1Co 6:11 Some of you once lived this way. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. (NET Bible)

Gal 5:4 Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.

The chief proof text used to support the false doctrine of Eternal Security or “Once Saved, Always Saved” is John 10:28.

Joh 10:28 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.

The key question to address when considering John 10:28 is who are the “them” and the “they”?

Careful readers of the Bible know to always consult the context of any supposed proof text for a doctrine. In this case, John 10:27 carefully defines just who benefit from and qualify for the promise given in John 10:28.

Joh 10:27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:

Only those who continue to hear and continue to follow the voice of Christ as now strictly contained exclusively in the New Testament can be considered to qualify as His sheep. The notion that we must continue is reinforced in the Greek text by the use of the present tense. This condition is directly stated in Colossians 1:23,

Col 1:23 If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye have heard, and which was preached to every creature which is under heaven; whereof I Paul am made a minister;

Notice the “If” that introduces Colossians 1:23. The presence of “if clauses” is another grammatical reason based upon the Greek text of the New Testament which fully proves that the doctrine of eternal security or “once saved, always saved” cannot possibly be the teaching of Scripture.

The proper statement of the assurance and security of the believer is to declare that the Bible teaches the absolute eternal security of the believer, not the unbeliever. That short statement does fully match what the Bible actually teaches.

I have written these comments regarding the fallacies of Calvinism in brief form “off the top of my head.” I do not mean to offend Calvinists, but I do mean as a “watchman on the wall” to shock them into Biblical reality. This information could readily be expanded into a book of several hundred pages if I were to supply all the relevant texts of Scripture, further supporting arguments, and direct reference to the points of grammar and explanations of the grammar so that readers of English Bibles with no knowledge of Greek and Greek grammar could understand. So if you think I’ve left an important point unaddressed or unanswered in this major controversy, don’t kid yourself into thinking I could not address and answer it, or that I have not already considered it in my studies! But feel free to raise any questions about these issues you may have.

I hope you will carefully consider what I have written. These are crucially important issues about which we must be right in our understanding. I have tried to present this information in a form you can easily understand. Let me know if I missed doing that.

Jerry

I should hardly need to add that I am well aware that there are many who believe in Calvinism who are fine Christians. Thankfully there is no word in the Bible that we all face a Final Test in Systematic Theology in order to be saved! Many unwittingly believe in Calvinism because that is what they have been taught, have heard on Christian radio, have sung in their hymns. This very false doctrine is almost inescapable. But some live and believe above the level of the doctrine they have wrongly been taught by others and no doubt are truly saved. Others, however, may be most guilty of suppressing the truth of God’s Word and of knowingly promoting “another Gospel,” and such individuals may not actually be saved, only God knows. Many Calvinists have contributed valuable commentaries and other works and reference volumes for Bible study. I do not wish to be thought to be attacking any of them personally. Contemporary Bible teachers like Dr. John MacArthur and Dr. R. C. Sproul are fine teachers of the Bible, except when they venture to promote the mistaken agenda of their Calvinistic presuppositions. Some advocates of Calvinism are quick to pin labels on non-Calvinists and anti-Calvinists like “Pelagian” or “Semi-Pelagian” and “Arminian.” At least Arminianism is one of the few “isms” that is largely in line with the teaching of Scripture, more so than Calvinism. But pinning labels does not lead to the proper exposition and understanding of Scripture.

Anyone who has an alternate view is free to post a question or comment here in their own words, and I will be pleased to address and further discuss such comments or questions from the Scripture, properly interpreted.

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65 Responses to Calvinism–Doctrines of Grace or Doctrines of Demons?

  1. ken sagely says:

    hello jerry i really appreciate your position on calvinism, but i respectfully disagree with tone of your arguments, terms like heresy, doctrines of demons, these terms like they are a group like jehovahs witness or seventh day adventish although your saying that it doesn’t attact any christian teacher but i think it does. i dont think its a heresy or doctrine of demons i think its christitan teaching of interptation just like armenians all who adhere to the systems of interptation they are brothers and sisters in christ. i think the tone that is set forth is very wrong also. i respect you and dr lavender and your ministeries of the word. i am not a calvinists i think calvinism has elements of truth in it we are born sinners rom 3/23, the eternal security of the believer, the soverignty of god. there are godly men that teach the gospel that are 5 pt calvinists. i respectfully disagree with doctrine of demons point.

  2. Jerry says:

    Dear Ken,

    I appreciate your willingness to share your point of view, even if it may not agree with mine.

    We all need to be open to studying the Scriptures. We need to carefully search the Scriptures to see if these things are so (Acts 17:11).

    I have spent a good many years studying these issues. I can only share what I have learned so far.

    So far, unless some kind hearted Calvinists come to this site and share their view in a manner that proves I am mistaken in the points I have made about Calvinism, I must conclude that after doing much Real Bible Study on these matters, I must affirm that the Calvinists are utterly mistaken in their doctrine on all “Five Points.”

    Since their doctrines negatively impact the doctrine of the Atonement, and unwittingly encourage the mistaken belief that it does not matter how we live, or whether we obey the commands of Christ without regard for or emphasis upon the need for holiness, I conclude they are promoting a false system of doctrine that is not true to the Bible, particularly the truths emphasized repeatedly in the grammar and syntax of the Greek New Testament.

    I encourage you to keep studying these issues in your Bible.

    It should always be possible for all of us, upon careful further study of Scripture, to learn something new from time to time that will serve to correct any mistakes we may have made in formulating our Bible doctrines.

    The Bible is written to be understood. Furthermore, as we read the Bible ever more carefully, we will be alerted to any misunderstanding we might have of any particular Bible verse or doctrine when we discover that what we thought we knew and understood results in a contradiction to truth taught elsewhere in God’s Word.

    Unfortunately, Calvinism as a system of doctrine is a deductive system. It is self-contained and internally consistent. But it is not derived inductively from Scripture. It is supported by “proof texts” which upon further examination do not really support the point of doctrine the texts are cited to prove.

    That is a problem with all such systems, and makes it very hard, if not impossible, to establish that they are completely true to Scripture.

    Paul is the one in the Bible who uses the expression “doctrines of demons.” I have no doubt but that Satan is behind all systematized falsehood contrived by man.

    We must be very careful that we obey the command of Scripture to “earnestly contend for the faith once delivered to the saints” (Jude 3), yet do so in a manner that shows “gentleness and respect” (1 Peter 3:15).

    Thank you Ken, for your encouragement in this regard.

  3. Jerry says:

    Dear Ken,

    I turned on the radio upstairs last evening, I think it was, and since I could not find anything suitable to listen to from local stations, I explored the radio dial and found a distant station in Cleveland, Ohio, I think, came in loud and clear.

    I heard one of the best, most Scriptural presentations on the subject of the doctrine of the Security of the Believer I have ever heard, or ever read.

    The speaker was Pastor Randy Shupe. To me at least, what he taught from the Word fully confirms what I have written in my article above.

    Here is the crux of the matter:

    The teaching of unconditional eternal security is a blatantly false doctrine.

    The teaching of the absolute eternal security of the true believer, true because the believer continues to believe, is an absolutely correct Bible doctrine.

    So, I am not denying the doctrine of eternal security, I am denying the doctrine of unconditional eternal security. The doctrine “Once saved, always saved” is the teaching of the doctrine of unconditional eternal security and is therefore not correct in terms of what the Bible actually teaches.

    I hope this explanation clarifies this for you.

  4. ken sagely says:

    bro jerry i ran across a definition of the perserverance of the saints, by the westminister confession in the following words: “they whom god hath accepted in his beloved,effectually called and sanctified by his spirit,can neither totally nor finally fall away from the state of grace; but shall certainly perservere therein to the end, and be eternally saved. or in other words we believe that those who once become true christians cannot totally fall into sin temporaily,they will eventually return and be saved”quotes rom 8/28-39.rom 5/-8-10. jn 10/28-30, jn 5/24. eph 2/8-10. is a greatest motivation to holy living eph 4/1-5/18. but i am not sure if i understand what once saved always saved is saying! i have always thought it was another way of saying eternal security in jesus christ. i dont think that phrase really is a good one for describing the teaching of the doctrine of eternal security. ken

  5. ken sagely says:

    jerry”i thought this was an interesting point that dr charles ryrie makes about the security of the believer. right off i like the phrase”the security of the believer”he says the question of eternal security must be thought of only in relation to a true believer. of course, therein is the rub, for often it is difficult to tell if someone who may appear to reject the truth he once seemed to hold was ever genuinely saved. also we know that there will be carnal christians in heaven whose works have,for the most part, been hay,wood,and stubble, but who, nevertheless,are saved i cor 3/15. to look at their lives would most likely lead to the conclusion that some of them,at least,had lost their salvation. but these practical matters notwithstanding, the question of eternal security is still this: can a true believer ever lose his salvation by either sinning or ceasing to believe or in any other way?” this is excellent point that gets right to the heart of the matter? what do you think?

  6. Jerry says:

    Dear Ken,

    You bring up excellent points.

    Can a true believer ever lose his salvation by either sinning or ceasing to believe?

    Sinning–if willfully persisted in and never repented of, would be moral apostasy, as I described it above. Certainly Paul, Peter, and John each warned about this possibility. If it were impossible to lose one’s salvation in this manner, there would be no need for all the warnings against it!

    Ceasing to believe is another way indeed to lose one’s salvation.

    Is it possible to stop believing? Check your Bible at Luke 8:13. Very clearly Jesus said it is possible to stop believing, for if someone can be said “to have believed for a while,” it is clear they stopped believing!

    I do not think these things happen very often to people who became truly saved and were true believers, but the warnings are there, so it is possible.

    You are correct that the expression “Once saved, always saved” is a very poor way to label the Bible doctrine of the security of the believer. It implies that no matter what a person does, they cannot lose their salvation. But that is to deny the doctrine found in Scripture regarding Apostasy. If you have Nave’s Topical Bible, check out that topic, and you will find many Scriptures given. Using the Cross Reference Guide to further search out the subject by looking up the verses which particularly strike you on the subject will likely lead to even more Scripture on the subject.

    I think it is clearer to assert the Bible teaches the security of the believer, not the unbeliever.

    The Bible does not teach the unconditional eternal security some, even many, advocate.

  7. ken sagely says:

    jerry very good points and appreciate the points on apostasy.the new scofield bible has a good point on apostasy on ii tim 3/1 apostasy”falling away”is the act of professed christians who deliberately reject revealed truth as to 1] the diety of jesus christ,and 2 ]redemption through his atoning and redeeming sacrifice ijn 4/1-3,ph 3/18,ii pe 2/1. this was a really interesting point he makes here. apostasy differs,therefore, from error concerning truth,which may be the result of ignorance acts 19/1-6, or heresy,which may be due to the snare of satan ii time 2/25-26. both of which may exist with true faith. the apostate is perfectly described in 4/3-4. apostates teachers depart from the faith, but not from the outward profession of christianity 3/5 apostate teachers are described in 4/3, ii pe 2/1-19,jude 4,8,11-13,16. apostasy in the church as in israel isa 1/5 -6,5/5-7 is irremediable and awaits judgment ii th 2/10-12, ii pe 2/17,21 jude 11-15, rev 3/14-16 the whole paragraph was pretty good i am going to look up all the cross references. what do you think?

  8. Sean says:

    Calvinism… so far in all that I’ve studied, the largest issues I’m finding(which I’m sure you’ll find also) is their unbiblical definitions of words… and their largest misinterpretations are that of Eph 1 and Romans 9. The ones in John are easily refuted by their context. The ones in Ephesians 1 and Romans 9 take some good knowledge in the OT Scriptures and other NT books to understand the context. The sad part is, most just take out those passages in a vacuum and don’t look up their meanings or the issues that Paul was dealing with when first preaching and starting churches in cities.

    Oh yeah… definitions of “elect, whosoever, spiritual death/life, all, world, impute, sovereignty” are just some of the many unbiblical issues I find in Calvinism supporting it’s doctrine.

    You’re correct about their bad understanding of sin/holiness also, it’s unbiblical and illogical what they teach(usually supported by a vacuum teaching of Romans 7–which actually refutes their ideals when put in context). One is not a murderer until they’ve murdered(at heart even)–likewise one is not a sinner UNTIL they’ve sinned. God is just. Amen!

    I don’t know how many Scriptural warnings we’d have to get to not see how if we don’t stop sinning and live holy as Christ we won’t inherit the Kingdom–the Israelites were cut off from the Kingdom after (disobedience, unbelief)sin, Adam and Eve kicked out of Garden after 1 sin, Saul the OT King had the Spirit taken from him and His kingship for 1 sin, Ananias and Sapphira were killed after 1 sin… let alone 1 Cor 6:9-10, Rev 21:8, Gal 5, Romans 8, Romans 10/11, Romans 6, 1/2 Peter as a whole, John 5:14, Matt 5:29-30, 1st John as a WHOLE… this is just off the top of my head. You can obey Jesus, and if you claim you cannot then you unwittingly call Him a liar, and if you’re not obeying(abiding in) Jesus don’t fool yourself–you will not inherit the Kingdom of God.

    God bless

  9. Jerry says:

    Dear Sean,

    Thank you for your good comment.

    As you know, I’m sure, Calvinism pervades our Evangelical culture, yet when studied thoroughly, it is actually a heresy. Most won’t go that far in giving it a label, but it is time that we do.

    Calvinists deny the power of the blood of Christ to remove sin, and accord it a power no greater than that of the blood of Levitical animals offered in OT times.

    As you recognize, the doctrine of “imputation” is in error, and I would affirm it is the result of bad translation.

    Even the doctrine of the substitutionary atonement of Christ is in error, though I once adhered to such a doctrine. Following correct translation of the original languages, such a doctrine will be seen to not accord with Scripture. Yet just this morning I heard Pastor Chuck Swindoll use the term, speaking of “Christ as our substitute,” when it would be more accurate to say “Christ as our sacrifice.”

    Calvinists generally teach the penal satisfaction theory of Atonement. The Bible teaches the doctrine of priestly sacrificial atonement. If Christ paid the penalty for our sins, to whom did he make the payment? The answer is not in the Bible. If Christ was punished for our sins, who punished him? The answer is not in the Bible. The idea originated from Anselm and other respected Church Fathers, and was adopted wholesale by the Protestant Reformers. In terms of what the Bible teaches, it looks to me like the Reformers, as good as they were in delivering us from the errors of Romanism, did not go far enough.

    It may be that the Calvinistic doctrine inadvertently supports the idea that it is possible for someone to practice sin willfully and still be a Christian. My Bible teaches otherwise!

  10. A. Way says:

    Wow. I found myself agreeing with most of your last post Jerry. Amazing. I’m shocked.

  11. Jerry says:

    Dear A. Way,

    I guess its good to get shocked once in a while!

    I am glad that every once in a rare while we agree!

  12. Catherine says:

    Thank you for your website.

    I grew up in a “Calvinist” background, spending time in evangelical and Presbyterian churches. Growing up, I heartily believed in once saved always saved. But, when I decided to study God’s word on my own, I discovered many “inconsistencies.”

    I have seen many friends, family members, and even myself fall (backslide or apostasize) because of the “error of lawlessness” that once saved, always saved promotes. Paul says, “Do not be deceived.” When I realized my error, I obviously repented. My heat aches because I see many Christians who have fallen asleep by the security in sin teachings. Pastors are giving them false assurances. That can be deadly!

    Therefore, it is important to tell others about the dangers of Calvinism. It does hinder people from maturing in the faith and from understanding both the Bible and God. I think it causes a lot of harm to the body of Christ. Using the word “heresy” and “doctrines of demons” is accurate. Paul said in Galatians 1 that there is only one true gospel. If Calvinism is not the gospel, then that makes it a false gospel and its teachers are false teachers, no matter how sincere they are.

    Therefore, I thank you for your honesty with this post. I just wish that there was more information available. Since Calvinism is a very popular doctrine, it is hard to find concrete, unbiases facts about its history and its implications.

    If you know of any books about Calvinism (you said that you could write a 400 page book about it), please let me know. I want resources to share with friends and family members. Of course, your website has been added to my favorites!

    Catherine

  13. Jerry says:

    Thank you, Catherine, for an excellent post!

    I do know of several helpful titles that discuss Calvinism in the light of what the Bible actually teaches.

    Robert Shank has written two books that I know of, Life in the Son and Elect in the Son, if I remember correctly. I don’t know if the books are still in print or not.

    My scholar friend Dr. Malcolm Lavender has written a number of books carefully and thoroughly addressing the errors and heresy of Calvinism. You may find them available at his website, which is http://www.crisispub.com.

    But if you have any specific questions, feel free to post them here. I believe I am equipped, knowledge wise, to answer about any question regarding Calvinism anyone might happen to raise. What I don’t have in my head I probably can find in my library.

  14. David says:

    Jerry,
    There is alot misconseptions in your article above regarding Reformed Theolgy, Grace Doctrine, Calvanism or whatever you want to call it. I am only going to talk about Total Depravity because everything starts from there and you skipped tons of information going directly to we a capable of choosing the Gospel. It is Not that we are incapable of Choosing the Gospel…we Are Howeverver Incapable of Choosing the Law.
    There are two ways to get into Heaven:
    1. The Law
    2. Christ (the gospel)

    God is perfect Righteousness and cannot harmonize with somone who is not. If you even broke one Law you where incapable of going to heaven. The Law was given to us after the Fall to tutior us that we cannot do it by are OWN EFFORTS. After sin entered the world our flesh naturally gravitates towards it to the point that we will continue to fall over and over again even after repentance. Animals where sacrificed evertime you sinned for repentance in old testament.
    There are many scriptures regarding man cannot and is incapable of Choosing God by Following the LAW!!!

    Romans 3:10-12 10 as it is written,
    “aThere is none righteous, not even one;
    11 There is none who understands,
    There is none who seeks for God;
    12 All have turned aside, together they have become useless;
    There is none who does good,
    There is not even one.”

    Other Versus:
    Mark 7:21-23
    Jeremiah 17:9
    1 Corinthians 2:14
    Ephesiaians 2:1-6
    Ephesians 2:13-16
    Romans 6:14-20

    This is why Christ had to come. He is the redeemer of past,present and future sins. There is nothing in man that can save him. That is why Christ had to die as the ultimate Sacrifice. He is the only way.

    There is alot more to this and you can get a complete discripion of what Calvanism is at the Christion Apologetics Reaserch Ministry (Carm.org)

    Also Calvanisn and Arminism are both under the umbrella of the Church Body. The both agree on the essentials of Salvation. Therefore neither one is a Heresy. At best if something is flawed it is an Apostacy which is a deviation that is NOT damiable.
    (Read Apostacy article at Carm.org)

    Mormans and Jehovah’s Witnesses are Heresey because they don’t have the essential doctrines of Salvation as an example. So I would be careful if I where about this topic.

  15. Jerry says:

    Dear David,

    I appreciate your commenting on this most controversial of topics.

    I am most familiar with the doctrines of Calvinism, stemming first from being raised from childhood at Highland Park Baptist Church in Detroit. Then I joined Military Avenue United Presbyterian Church in Detroit, where I became an ordained elder. I was active there during the controversy over the Presbyterian statement of faith. Our church elder board made a careful study of the issues, and rejected the doctrinal changes, or changes to the doctrinal statement of faith, being promoted by the Presbytery and the national denomination. Our church withdrew from the denomination and kept our property. We made careful study of the full Westminster Statement of Faith–I still have the large volume very handy even now, and used it to set up Scripture proof of the doctrines it teaches when I developed the Subject Index to The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge.

    I have a very extensive library of Calvinistic Bible commentaries, systematic theologies, and other works by Calvinists, as well as the writings of John Calvin himself. Those volumes do not merely collect dust. For many years I had an entire bookcase in the living room right where my favorite chair for reading is located, and read these works with great enjoyment and spiritual profit. Those books (as the dark green cloth-bound volumes published by Jay Green of Sovereign Grace Publishers) got me into some trouble when the pastor of a church local to me now saw them and deduced I must be a strong Calvinist, and asked me to leave his church and find one to attend that believed like I do. I have since moved those books upstairs to my library room where I now do most of my study, and replaced them with my collection of works devoted to the study of Bible prophecy.

    In any case, as an experienced high school and college debater and even debate coach and judge, I have learned to study each side of a controversial subject carefully to understand it as well as those who promote each given point of view.

    I have studied Calvinism, including Reformed Theology, Grace Doctrine, and all its related themes at length and for many years. For example, I have studied both Hodges, Dabney, and Shedd, among others in systematic theology. I listen to both Dr. R. C. Sproul and Dr. John MacArthur, and have and use the study Bibles prepared by each.

    But I have also studied the other side.

    More importantly, I have carefully studied Scripture end to end and everything in between, including the vocabulary and especially the grammar.

    Greek grammar will not tolerate the viewpoint of Calvinism, but refutes it absolutely at every point and turn. No Calvinist has ever dared to address the grammar of the Greek New Testament and use it to support the position of Calvinism. The grammar of John 3:16 has never been addressed by a Calvinist in an appeal to John 3:16 to support the doctrines of Calvinism. One cannot be correct in a doctrine or a system of doctrine when one ignores, suppresses, or obfuscates the grammar of the original languages of Scripture. Calvinists fail to properly account for the subjunctive mood in either their commentaries or their translations, and evade its significance even in some of their standard grammars.

    But if you would, I would like for you to present in a further comment what you believe to be a single misconception you find in my article here. If we take each misconception you find, one at a time, and carefully explore it, you may force me to modify my understanding, for I am ALWAYS open to correction based upon better evidence or reasoning.

    Thank you very much for joining in on the discussion here. I look forward to your continuing participation and input.

  16. David says:

    Jerry,

    First I would like to say that it is not about who is right or wrong. I believe we are all looking for Truth. I appreciate you giving me some of your background. I have also studied the subject extensively. I was raised in Church of Christ Schools my entire life all the way thru College and have a degree in Biblical Studies.

    It was not till I got married that I started to heavily research my Biblical World View. My wife grew up Arminian Charismatic and I grew up very Conservative. We have had several arguments agreeing upon what church to attend and what we believe. So we had no choice but to study the subject. I too have read systematic theologies and listen to R. C. Sproul, John MacArthur and many others. A great website is Apologetics 315 which has the top 100 apologists and links to there sites. Although I have to say that just because someone studies the subject and has a degree does not make them intelligent or logical in reasoning. You can be book smart and not have great problem solving skills. Like a Doctor reading everything thing on relationships but failing to put it into actual practice. Matter of fact the Barna study group says Based on interviews with 601 Senior Pastors nationwide, representing a random cross-section of Protestant churches, Barna reports that only half of the country’s Protestant pastors – 51% – have a biblical worldview. Defining such a worldview as believing that absolute moral truth exists, that it is based upon the Bible, and having a biblical view on six core beliefs (the accuracy of biblical teaching, the sinless nature of Jesus, the literal existence of Satan, the omnipotence and omniscience of God, salvation by grace alone, and the personal responsibility to evangelize), the researcher produced data showing that there are significant variations by denominational affiliation and other demographics.
    So the point here is yes you have to read the Bible yourself and study both sides of the fence and even then you still might not get it.
    What I do know is this ……If you have studied both Arminian and Calvinism view points extensively you would not be so quick to call Calvinism a Hersey. First of all there are too many different degrees of both view points in order to put it all in one Boat. So you are in error to make a generalized statement of either. Instead you have to talk about specific topics because there are 4 point and 3 point Calvanist out there that do not adhere to the 5 points. Both however agree upon the Salvation process and both are considered to be under the Church Body. Here are the Essentials below.

    1.Primary Essentials
    Cannot deny and be Christian since they are explicitly stated as required in scripture.
    A.Jesus is both God and man (John 1:1,14;8:24; Col. 2:9; 1 John 4:1-4).
    B.Jesus rose from the dead physically (John 2:19-21).
    C.Salvation is by grace through faith (Rom. 5:1; Eph. 2:8-9; Gal. 5:1-5).
    D.The gospel is the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus (1 Cor. 15:1-4;
    E.There is only one God (Exodus 20:1-3; Isaiah 43:10; 44:6,8)

    2.Secondary Essentials –
    Cannot deny and be Christian.
    A.God exists as a Trinity of persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (See Trinity)
    B.Virgin Birth of Jesus – relates to incarnation of Christ as God and man.

    3.Primary Non-Essentials
    Denial does not void salvation, yet principles are clearly taught in scripture. Denial suggests apostasy.
    A.Male eldership and pastorate (1 Tim. 2:12-13; 3:15; Titus 1:5-7)
    B.Fidelity in marriage in heterosexual relationships (1 Cor. 6:9)
    C.The condemnation of homosexuality (Rom. 1:26-27)
    D.Inerrancy of Scripture (2 Tim. 3:16)

    4.Secondary Non-Essentials – does not affect one’s salvation relationship with God. Debated within Christianity. Denial or acceptance does not suggest apostasy.

    A.Predestination, election, and free will
    B.Communion every week, monthly, or quarterly, etc.
    C.Saturday or Sunday Worship
    D.Worship with or without instruments, traditional or contemporary.
    E.Pretribulation rapture, midtribulation rapture, posttribulation rapture.
    F.Premillennialism, amillennialism, and post millennialism.
    G.Continuation or cessation of the charismatic gifts
    H.Etc.

    Both Arminian and Calvinist Theologians agree with the above.

    Also when the Pastor asked you to leave the Church. Do you believe he was correct in doing so??? I am a 4 point Calvinist and I attend a Calvary Chapel which they are more like a 3 point. Which works out great for my Wife and I. Calvary sticks to verse by verse preaching so you only always get the gospel. Very little topical preaching.

    Also no offense but to be an experience debate coach you sure are using allot of absolutes. You say no Calvinist has ever dared address the grammar of the Greek New testament and the Greek will not tolerate the viewpoint of Calvinism. As I said earlier go to the Carm Website and listen to some of Matts podcast. He has had a radio show for the past ten years taking questions from around the world..(In the Greek!!) and he is not the only one.
    Although I agree with you on John 3:16 Christ died for all. Hence being a 4 point Calvinist. In the Greek it does not say whosoever believeth have everlasting life. It says the “believing ones” have everlasting life in the Greek. Carm radio show has talked about this numerous times. I suggest you calling in the show because every answer is there ….(In the Greek).

  17. Jerry says:

    Dear Dave,

    Thank you for being willing to continue this discussion.

    You fault me for making rather absolute statements regarding Calvinists and their use of Greek grammar to affirm their doctrinal position. I said NO Calvinist has EVER properly exegeted John 3:16 to support their system of doctrine.

    After studying this subject extensively and intensively for several decades (I started my study of Greek in 1958), I have read and heard and learned enough to make the judgment calls I have regarding Calvinism. Those who maintain belief in the so-called Five Points of Calvinism cannot accept John 3:16 as it stands. John 3:16 contradicts their system of belief.

    You correctly noted that John 3:16, that “God so loved the world,” must indicate that Jesus Christ died for ALL. You also correctly observed that “whosoever believeth” indicates that those who believe have a continuing belief.

    I indicated that I probably started out as a “Four Point Calvinist,” since I never accepted the doctrine of limited atonement. You indicate that is your understanding now.

    There are some Five Point Calvinists (like Dr. R. C. Sproul) who take the position that all five points of Calvinism go together, such that it is not logically consistent to hold to less than all five points.

    After careful study, reported in some detail in my original post or article here, I have determined that ALL Five Points are mistaken. Not only are they mistaken, they are heresy. I have pointed out the reasons, drawn from the Bible itself, that prove each of the Five Points of Calvinism are at odds with what the Bible actually teaches.

    You will carefully note that I concluded my article with the following paragraph:

    I should hardly need to add that I am well aware that there are many who believe in Calvinism who are fine Christians. Thankfully there is no word in the Bible that we all face a Final Test in Systematic Theology in order to be saved! Many unwittingly believe in Calvinism because that is what they have been taught, have heard on Christian radio, have sung in their hymns. This very false doctrine is almost inescapable. But some live and believe above the level of the doctrine they have wrongly been taught by others and no doubt are truly saved. Others, however, may be most guilty of suppressing the truth of God’s Word and of knowingly promoting “another Gospel,” and such individuals may not actually be saved, only God knows. Many Calvinists have contributed valuable commentaries and other works and reference volumes for Bible study. I do not wish to be thought to be attacking any of them personally. Contemporary Bible teachers like Dr. John MacArthur and Dr. R. C. Sproul are fine teachers of the Bible, except when they venture to promote the mistaken agenda of their Calvinistic presuppositions. Some advocates of Calvinism are quick to pin labels on non-Calvinists and anti-Calvinists like “Pelagian” or “Semi-Pelagian” and “Arminian.” At least Arminianism is one of the few “isms” that is largely in line with the teaching of Scripture, more so than Calvinism. But pinning labels does not lead to the proper exposition and understanding of Scripture.

    Take special note of this comment I wrote in response to a comment by Ken Sagely above:

    Unfortunately, Calvinism as a system of doctrine is a deductive system. It is self-contained and internally consistent. But it is not derived inductively from Scripture. It is supported by “proof texts” which upon further examination do not really support the point of doctrine the texts are cited to prove.

    This glaring error embedded in Calvinism is very clear in Calvinistic expositions of or appeal to texts in Romans 3 and especially Romans 9.

    No doubt the paragraph with which you disagree is this one:

    Because the doctrines of Calvinism are heresy, I have called them “doctrines of demons.” Paul warned Timothy in 1 Timothy 4:1 that in later times men would depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of demons. Is there anything in the immediate context which justifies applying this stricture to Calvinism? I believe there is. Paul states in 1 Timothy 4:10 that “we trust in the living God, who is the savior of all men, especially of those that believe.” Such a statement is incompatible with the doctrine of limited atonement, and conflicts with other aspects of Calvinism. Calvinism is a heresy. We in the Christian faith do not hesitate to condemn Arians and their modern counterparts as teaching heresy when they deny the full deity of our Lord Jesus Christ. Such false doctrine is the mark of a false cult. Until now most of us have hesitated to declare Calvinism to be what it is: a system of mistaken doctrines that are contrary to Scripture rightly interpreted and understood. I furnish the Biblical evidence for this charge of heresy in my exposition below. All false doctrines can ultimately be traced, when systematically spread by man-made religious systems, to Satan, and are called by Paul “doctrines of demons.”

    Now, you will kindly note carefully that I have given the Biblical evidence which demonstrates that each of the Five Points of Calvinism represented by the acronym “TULIP” is false.

    Any system of belief which can be proven false to the teaching of the Bible on all its major doctrinal claims surely has no basis to claim Biblical orthodoxy.

    I agree that there are subjects in the Bible upon which good Christians may differ. The mode of Christian water baptism would be a prime example. Many believe the Bible teaches baptism by immersion, and refuse to accept the validity of any other mode. This is wrong. Immersion is not based upon any evidence available in the Bible itself. Lexically speaking, the Greek word is never used in all of Greek writing and literature in the sense our Baptist friends wish to define it. This has been proven by James W. Dale who made a careful study of the word for baptism and published his results in five volumes (bound in four). The Greek words related to the term “baptize” are strictly non-modal words in Greek. They do not express how something was done, but only that it was done. The mode must be determined by the context. No context in Scripture implies or requires immersion. There is not so much as a single provable instance of any person being immersed in water for any religious purpose whatsoever to be found anywhere in the Bible. (There is one of my carefully researched and proven “absolutes” again!) Yet I am perfectly willing to accept any mode of baptism as valid, though not necessarily correct, in terms of what the Bible actually teaches. Most Baptists and Baptistic churches are not so generous about this non-essential doctrine.

    Dr. Norm Geisler has written a useful study of just which doctrines must be held to be true, and those doctrines which are non-essential, upon which true Bible believing Christians are permitted to differ. The listing you provide no doubt corresponds nicely with what Geisler has written.

    I agree with George Barna regarding the sad state of even many pastors who fail to possess a truly Biblical worldview. I would no doubt pass Barna’s test with flying colors.

  18. Jerry says:

    Dear Dave,

    You asked the important and interesting question,

    Also when the Pastor asked you to leave the Church. Do you believe he was correct in doing so???

    I believe the pastor was very wrong in doing what he did. His church board who also backed this decision was also equally wrong.

    Their error was failing to hear a matter before making their judgment. I was never given an actual opportunity to explain myself, my doctrinal position. That church and pastor violated the principle clearly given in John 7:51,

    Joh 7:51 Doth our law judge any man, before it hear him, and know what he doeth?

    When I truthfully signed the application for church membership, I answered their query whether I accepted the doctrinal statement of the church, “almost.”

    I indicated that while I accepted immersion as a possible mode of water baptism, that I believed firmly that sprinkling or pouring are also valid.

    I indicated that their statement about Bible prophecy, that Christ would reign for 1000 years, was not as correct as to state that Christ will reign forever, as clearly stated at Luke 1:32, 33.

    Luk 1:32 He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David:
    Luk 1:33 And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.

    Scripture is very clear that the reign of Christ upon this earth is eternal and will never end. This must be so to fulfill the promises God swore by oath to Abraham and David in the Abrahamic and Davidic Covenants, respectively.

    The pastor stated he believed I was a Calvinist. His church is strictly Arminian. Unfortunately, he never asked me about this matter, or he surely would have understood differently.

    I believe that on Judgment Day there will be some very serious consequences for that pastor and that board of elders.

    I believe that by not receiving me and my family (Romans 15:7), they missed out on the benefits my presence could have brought. I had been active in several different churches and denominations in the past. In each case, the Lord blessed my ministry as a Bible teacher to see many won to Christ. For example, at the Presbyterian Church, I was appointed teacher of the high school Sunday school class. I started with a class of about eight students. When I left to take up a ministry opportunity with Dr. Carl George in Gainesville, Florida, my Sunday school class had grown to more than forty regular attenders at Military UP Church in Detroit. In Florida, I was asked to teach the College and Career age Sunday school class. The pastor alerted me when college let out for the summer that the class would dwindle drastically in size. The class never did dwindle, it continued to grow. When I returned to Detroit, I was appointed the teacher of the College and Career age class at Covenant Baptist Church, and that class grew likewise. Some of the members became missionaries and pastors.

    When I began to attend the Avoca Nazarene Church the pastor asked me to teach the adult class. It grew. He asked me to take over the morning and evening service for a time while he was on a trip to Germany. The attendance at the evening service grew to a number greater than I had ever seen attend the morning service. People are very interested in being taught the Bible.

    I wonder just what might have taken place had the church near me accepted my membership application. I already had been asked to teach the adult class when the pastor could not be present. In the Gospels Jesus makes an interesting comment about what might have been but wasn’t.

    Luk 10:13 Woe unto thee, Chorazin! woe unto thee, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works had been done in Tyre and Sidon, which have been done in you, they had a great while ago repented, sitting in sackcloth and ashes.

    See also Matthew 11:23,

    Mat 11:23 And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day.

    I wrote the following note in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge for Matthew 11:23,

    for if. FS184B2, ver. +21. A statement such as this argues strongly against absolute predestination, for our Lord himself states that had Sodom witnessed his mighty works, it would not have been destroyed, for it would have repented (ver. 21). Thus things could and would turn out in a different manner if different choices had been made. Clearly the will and decision of individual men is involved in the ultimate issue of events. Our Lord argues that this is one basis and reason for there being degrees of punishment in eternity (ver. 24. Ezk 18:4n, 20n. Lk +*12:47, 48). ver. 14 with Ml 4:5. Mt 23:39. Dt +*32:22. 1 S 13:13, 14. 2 K 13:19. Ps 81:13, 14. Is +*30:15. +48:18. Je 23:22. 51:9. Ezk **3:6. Da 3:18. Jl 2:28n. Lk 4:23. *13:34. 19:42. 2 P **2:21.

    May this be a lesson for all who serve in church ministry in any capacity. We MUST obey Romans 15:7. I placed a full study of this verse on this site under “Verse by Verse Studies” in the Archives here.

    Thank you for raising such a good question.

  19. David says:

    Jerry,

    Thank for the read about the Church who asked you to leave. Yes they where incorrect to do so.

    However I am a little concerned with your response above. You say you are an experienced high school and college debater and even debate coach and judge. Yet there are simple mistakes in your article above.

    Quote you said, ” You fault me for making rather ABSOLUTE statements regarding Calvinists and their use of Greek grammar to affirm their doctrinal position. I said NO Calvinist has EVER properly exegeted John 3:16 to support their system of doctrine.”

    Wrong!!!

    Read above what you actually said was,” Greek grammar will NOT tolerate the viewpoint of Calvinism, but refutes it absolutely at EVERY point and turn. NO Calvinist has ever DARED to address the grammar of the Greek New Testament and use it to support the position of Calvinism.

    If that is not an absolute statement I don’t know what is.

    NEXT..you misquote me saying “, You correctly noted that John 3:16, that “God so loved the world,” must indicate that Jesus Christ died for ALL. You also correctly observed that “whosoever believeth” indicates that those who believe have a continuing belief.

    Wrong!!

    Read above what I actually said,” Although I agree with you on John 3:16 Christ died for all. Hence being a 4 point Calvinist. In the Greek it does NOT say whosoever believeth have everlasting life. It says the “BELIEVING ONES” have everlasting life in the Greek. Carm.org radio show has talked about this numerous times. I suggest you calling in the show because every answer is there ….(In the Greek).

    Believing ones falls in line with Calvinisim in a sence of Chosen ones.
    (Please do not make you entire response based on this. We can get to it after going thrus the steps starting with Total Depravity.)

    Then you say (Which by the way is an absolute statement) ,”

    After careful study, reported in some detail in my original post or article here, I have determined that ALL Five Points are mistaken. Not only are they mistaken, they are heresy. I have pointed out the reasons, drawn from the Bible itself, that prove each of the Five Points of Calvinism are at odds with what the Bible actually teaches.

    Wow you have made an extremely bold statement. There are many Arminian Churches that hold to Total Depravity and many that are a mix Calvinism and Arminism. I answered why your statement on total depravity is wrong in my first article above.

    Then you give me your credentials ,”

    {After studying this subject extensively and intensively for several decades (I started my study of Greek in 1958), I HAVE READ AND HEARD AND LEARNED ENOUGH TO MAKE THE JUDGEMENT CALLS I HAVE regarding Calvinism”

    And then based on these Credentials you say……

    “After careful study, reported in some detail in my original post or article here, I have determined that ALL Five Points are mistaken. Not only are they mistaken, they are heresy”.

    1. You are taking the 5 points out of context and I already explained in the first article why you are wrong on total depravity. Your Staetment,”

    God is not commanding something that it is impossible for us to do, neither is His command something to which we cannot respond. God’s command to us today is to repent and believe the Gospel.

    Even educated Arminians would know this staetment is out of context. You put two statments together to make appear Total depravity is wrong. This is NOT what Total depravity even says. The Gospel has nothing to do with total depravity statement……It is the SOLUTION to it. Total Depravity is OLD TESTAMENT. The Gospel is the Solution..NEW TESTAMENT. NO ONE died in Old Testament and went to heaven untill Christ came. As I said earlier there are two ways into heaven:
    A. the Law (in order to follow this you must be pure and no one is)
    B. Christ
    We are completely incapable of doing A. so our only option is B. Christ is the only Way!!!

    Your problem by your statement is not with Total Depravity you may have the problem starting with unconditional election.

    2. You then again call Reformed Theolgy a heresy when it adhers to all the principles of the essentials of Salvation. Please stop calling it a Heresy or explain which essential step of the Salvation Process it goes against….I list them above.
    Heresy means condemned by a religious authority which is a cause for damnation!!!

    One last question do you currently go to a Church or are reading the Bible by yourself?

  20. David says:

    Great Sites to Check Out……

    1.GotQuestions.org….. has a huge database on just about every questions regarding the bible.

    2. Carm.org……..Christian Apologetics research ministry has one of the largest encyclpedias of Christian Theology on the net.

    3. Apologetics 315 has wide varity of topics from the majority of the top apologists in the world and links to thier sites.

  21. David says:

    While Jerry is gone for a bit….

    This is a very good article Gotquestions.org put out about this topic:

    Question: “Calvinism vs. Arminianism – which view is correct?”

    Answer: Calvinism and Arminianism are two systems of theology that attempt to explain the relationship between God’s sovereignty and man’s responsibility in the matter of salvation. Calvinism is named for John Calvin, a French theologian who lived from 1509-1564. Arminianism is named for Jacobus Arminius, a Dutch theologian who lived from 1560-1609.

    Both systems can be summarized with five points. Calvinism holds to the total depravity of man while Arminianism holds to partial depravity. Total depravity states that every aspect of humanity is tainted by sin; therefore, human beings are unable to come to God on their own accord. Partial depravity states that every aspect of humanity is tainted by sin, but not to the extent that human beings are unable to place faith in God of their own accord. Note – classical Arminianism rejects “partial depravity” and holds a view very close to Calvinistic “total depravity.”

    Calvinism includes the belief that election is unconditional, while Arminianism believes in conditional election. Unconditional election is the view that God elects individuals to salvation based entirely on His will, not on anything inherently worthy in the individual. Conditional election states that God elects individuals to salvation based on His foreknowledge of who will believe in Christ unto salvation, thereby on the condition that the individual chooses God.

    Calvinism sees the atonement as limited, while Arminianism sees it as unlimited. This is the most controversial of the five points. Limited atonement is the belief that Jesus only died for the elect. Unlimited atonement is the belief that Jesus died for all, but that His death is not effectual until a person receives Him by faith.

    Calvinism includes the belief that God’s grace is irresistible, while Arminianism says that an individual can resist the grace of God. Irresistible grace argues that when God calls a person to salvation, that person will inevitably come to salvation. Resistible grace states that God calls all to salvation, but that many people resist and reject this call.

    Calvinism holds to perseverance of the saints while Arminianism holds to conditional salvation. Perseverance of the saints refers to the concept that a person who is elected by God will persevere in faith and will not permanently deny Christ or turn away from Him. Conditional salvation is the view that a believer in Christ can, of his/her own free will, turn away from Christ and thereby lose salvation. Note – many Arminians deny “conditional salvation” and instead hold to “eternal security.”

    So, in the Calvinism vs. Arminianism debate, who is correct? It is interesting to note that in the diversity of the body of Christ, there are all sorts of mixtures of Calvinism and Arminianism. There are five-point Calvinists and five-point Arminians, and at the same time three-point Calvinists and two-point Arminians. Many believers arrive at some sort of mixture of the two views. Ultimately, it is our view that both systems fail in that they attempt to explain the unexplainable. Human beings are incapable of fully grasping a concept such as this. Yes, God is absolutely sovereign and knows all. Yes, human beings are called to make a genuine decision to place faith in Christ unto salvation. These two facts seem contradictory to us, but in the mind of God they make perfect sense.

    Read more: http://www.gotquestions.org/Calvinism-vs-Arminianism.html#ixzz2XF6051a7

  22. Jerry says:

    Dear Dave,

    Thank you for posting this information. It is almost correct on some points.

    As for me, I wish not to be involved in an “ism,” unless it is Biblically correct, and most are not.

    It is good that the article made a distinction when it referred to Classic Arminianism. There are differences that matter within these belief systems.

    The article is not entirely accurate on “total depravity” with respect to Calvinism. What Calvinists actually believe and teach is “total inability.”

    Calvinism is entirely wrong, from stem to stern, as it were, because Calvinists ignore the place of the subjunctive mood in the Greek New Testament, as well as other significant grammatical features, in particular, the imperative mood, not to mention Greek aspect, which for the Greek verb in the present tense is most significant.

    The imperative mood marks a command. God does not issue commands in His Word to which we cannot respond.

    The subjunctive mood marks a contingency: you will benefit from a promise if you meet its conditions.

    Even John 3:16 employs the subjunctive mood:

    John 3:16 for God did so love the world, that His Son–the only begotten–He gave, that every one who is believing in him may not perish, but may have life age-during. (Young’s Literal Translation)

    Notice the two instances of “may.” “May” marks the subjunctive mood, which in this context definitely marks a contingency. The stated contingency is “every one who is believing in him.”

    This at once rules out the false doctrines of (1) absolute predestination; (2) unconditional election; (3) eternal security; (4) “Once Saved, Always Saved.”

    Those who are actually now in possession of eternal life are those who meet the contingency or stipulation of continuing to believe.

  23. David says:

    Please answer my previous post on June 20th…..

    You need to answer point by point in order for this to make sence to you. You are making statements again that I have already answered.
    You use John 3:16 again when I already said the Greek does NOT say whosoever and it does not use the word every…it simply says the believing ones. Which even then bringing up this verse is irrelevant and you base all 5 points wrong based on John 3:16????

    What you are failing to realize is that both Calvanism and Arminism can be correct when it comes to John 3:16. God’s will works in conjunction with man’s will. If you think’s man’s will does it alone you are going against scripture. What we do not know is how it is done…hence this argument.

    Also there is absolute predestination. Again God’s will work with man’s will sorta how the prophets wrote the scripture. We do NOT know how it works!!! From God’s Point of view all things are predestined but from man’s point of view they are not…

    PREDESTINATION should be viewed in its larger aspects. This world was created with a definite plan by a planner “who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will.” That plan, toward which the whole creation moves, is PREDESTINATION. When God called Abram and said, “I will make of thee a great nation,” that was PREDESTINATION for a certain family. When God said, “I will give unto thee and to thy seed after thee the land of thy sojournings, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession,” that was, and is, for the land of Canaan, PREDESTINATION. It has been pledged to Abraham, that is a promise. It has been foretold to the world, and that is prophecy. Christ comming was predestined in Genisis 3:15 right after the fall …Promise, Prophecy, and PREDESTINATION are three words that apply to the work of an omnipotent God and they can scarcely be separated.

    Please answer my post on June 20th….regarding Total Depravity and Calvanism being a heresy and also Do you go to a Church???

  24. David says:

    Also by the way when you say, ‘” The article is not entirely accurate on “total depravity” with respect to Calvinism. What Calvinists actually believe and teach is “total inability.”

    Gotquestions.org is parachurch ministry. Multiple Pastors and teachers approve the articles before they are written from multiple denominations and it has to go thru a board process.

    We have total inabilty to Choose God the Father(Spirit) when we fell. Left alone we would all perish. God puts a plan into action and brings Christ (God in the flesh) something that we can make a decision but even that decision is made in conjunction with God’s will.

    Here is the last part of the article again:

    Ultimately, it is our view that both systems fail in that they attempt to explain the unexplainable. Human beings are incapable of fully grasping a concept such as this. Yes, God is absolutely sovereign and knows all. Yes, human beings are called to make a genuine decision to place faith in Christ unto salvation. These two facts seem contradictory to us, but in the mind of God they make perfect sense.

  25. David says:

    One last thing John 6:65 Ties is together….

    Christ says himself, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.”

  26. Jerry says:

    Dear David,

    First off, lets revisit John 3:16, about which you comment:

    You need to answer point by point in order for this to make sence to you. You are making statements again that I have already answered.
    You use John 3:16 again when I already said the Greek does NOT say whosoever and it does not use the word every…it simply says the believing ones. Which even then bringing up this verse is irrelevant and you base all 5 points wrong based on John 3:16????

    Young’s Literal Translation of the Bible remains one of the most accurate translations of the Bible available. He gives John 3:16 as follows (boldface emphasis added):

    Joh 3:16 for God did so love the world, that His Son–the only begotten–He gave, that every one who is believing in him may not perish, but may have life age-during.

    Young correctly translates the Greek present active participle by “is believing.” The translation “believes” is less satisfactory because it fails to focus on the issue of continuing belief, which is the whole point of the contingency statement involving “may” in John 3:16.

    All passages in the New Testament which speak of belief in a promise statement that results in eternal life use the present tense. In Greek, the present tense points to continuing action, which is more clearly translated by our English present progressive tense, as Young does, by “is believing.”

    Calvinists wrongly suppress or ignore the significance of these grammatical matters in John 3:16 and often elsewhere, probably because it does not fit their mistaken system of theology.

    My scholar friend Dr. Malcolm Lavender in his translation gives John 3:16,

    16 For God so loved the world that He gave His the only-one-of-His-kind Son, that everyone continuing to believe in Him may not perish, but may have eternal life.

    The message of the New Testament is clear: true belief must be continuing belief.

  27. Jerry says:

    Dear David,

    The next point at issue is the first point of five of the Five Points of Calvinism, as represented by the “T” in the acronym “TULIP,” where the T stands for “Total Depravity.”

    If all that were meant by “total depravity” is that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God,” no Bible believing Christian would object. But that is not what Calvinists mean by total depravity. What they actually mean is that man cannot will to choose to believe if presented with the truth of the Gospel from Scripture, whether presented in oral or written form. Thus what Calvinists are actually teaching is the “Total Inability” that I spoke of before.

    In the Greek text of the New Testament, there is a feature called “voice” in Greek grammar. Like English, Greek has the Active Voice and the Passive Voice. Unlike English, Greek also has a third option, the Middle Voice. In plain and non-technical terms, the “middle voice” speaks of or to the volition of the individual being addressed or commanded. This means that the person addressed participates via his will or volition to the request or command presented. This at once removes from any consideration the mistaken doctrine of the “bondage of the will.”

    Dana and Mantey in section 155 of their Greek grammar state “The middle voice is that use of the verb which describes the subject as participating in the results of the action.”

    An example text would be Acts 2:41, which reads “Now they that received His word for themselves were baptized.” The rendering “received…for themselves” represents the Middle Voice. This is an example, therefore, of sinners acting in the interest of themselves as portrayed or represented by the Middle Voice.

    The Active Voice is employed in Acts 16:30, 31, where the Philippian jailer asked “What must I do to be saved?” He was told, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, and your house.” The jailer performed the act of believing in order to be saved. Thus he acted with respect to his salvation. Salvation was not irresistible, nor was it monergism, not all God.

    People acting toward their salvation in the Active Voice are hardly in a state of total inability.

    In the light of Greek grammar and syntax, the Calvinistic doctrine of total depravity cannot stand. Voice in the Greek New Testament, Active and Middle, destroys the false doctrine that man cannot respond to his Creator.

  28. David says:

    Jerry,

    The Greek word used for Believing is Pistos and it is consistantly used in the past tense throughout the New Testament. Definition: faithful , believe , believing , true , believer, sure. It is used:
    “That the Believing Ones have everlasting life”

    Faithful ones
    Believe ones
    believing ones
    true ones
    sure ones

    Anyone of these can line up with Calvinism.

    We do not talk like that in English. So we translate it into what we understand. Young translation is correct but you can read it both ways.

    That every one who IS believing in him.

    IN ANY CASE….I have already said that quote. “What you are failing to realize is that both Calvanism and Arminism can be correct when it comes to John 3:16. God’s will works in conjunction with man’s will. If you think’s man’s will does it alone you are going against scripture. What we do not know is how it is done…hence this argument.

    What does this verse mean to you John 6:65 ???

    Christ says himself, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.”

  29. David says:

    Jerry,

    I am going to take this slow. When you say the word Calvinist you are putting varying degrees of beliefs into one boat and calling them a heresy. There are bad and good Calvinist. It is the same as using the word Christian….there are varying beliefs with in Christianity and they do not ALL serve the same God. So you CAN NOT say ALL Calvinist. What you are doing is calling the MAJORITY of Christians followers of demons since you say quote:

    “After careful study, reported in some detail in my original post or article here, I have determined that ALL Five Points are mistaken. Not only are they mistaken, they are heresy.”

    So I have to ask you for the third time…..What Church do you currently go to and if you Don’t go. What Church do you Affirm???

  30. Jerry says:

    Dear Dave,

    I am not currently a member of any church. I am not attending church on a regular basis either. In a sense I attend a “home church,” at my home. We have the hymn books, a grand piano, and lots of Bibles!

    If I were to move back to Detroit, my Pastor friend Pastor Emery Moss, Jr. of Strictly Biblical Ministries, would no doubt welcome me with open arms and put me right to work, which I would surely enjoy. But his church is too far for me to attend.

    I have found a fine church out here in my rural area just 4 miles away on back gravel roads. I began attending a year or so ago, but my Civic broke down twice in the process, so I had no means to reliably get there until my son Tim visited from Arizona and made the necessary repairs, and until after my son Dan fixed the broken brake lines.

    The church is the Cole Methodist Church. The pastor is excellent. The people are accepting of new faces to the church and very friendly and helpful.

    After I complete my project of expanding cross references for Bible study I plan, Lord willing, permitting, and enabling, to attend church there when the roads are passable.

    Until then, as you might well imagine, I am busy studying the Bible verse by verse, word by word, in detail, every day, morning, afternoon, and evening.

    I am currently working on Titus chapter 1. My wife tells me when I complete that chapter I will have progressed to 95% of the Bible chapters completed.

  31. Jerry says:

    Dear David,

    Somewhere above I wrote:

    “Greek grammar will not tolerate the viewpoint of Calvinism, but refutes it absolutely at every point and turn. No Calvinist has ever dared to address the grammar of the Greek New Testament and use it to support the position of Calvinism. The grammar of John 3:16 has never been addressed by a Calvinist in an appeal to John 3:16 to support the doctrines of Calvinism. One cannot be correct in a doctrine or a system of doctrine when one ignores, suppresses, or obfuscates the grammar of the original languages of Scripture. Calvinists fail to properly account for the subjunctive mood in either their commentaries or their translations, and evade its significance even in some of their standard grammars.”

    I stand by my statement.

    In your own comments here on John 3:16 you have inadvertently diminished the significance of the present tense employed in John 3:16, and have not taken into account the presence of two subjunctives marked by “may” in Young’s Literal Translation which I quoted.

    Julius R. Mantey, co-author of the New Testament Greek Grammar I have cited in discussion above, was also co-author of a commentary on the Gospel of John. At John 3:16 he made the following observation:

    “In the New Testament, when belief is said to lead to eternal life, as is the case here, the tense expressing continuous action is always used while the tense expressing a single action is never used. The stress is thus placed on a continuous faith rather than on an isolated moment of faith. Never in these passages expressing belief in eternal life is one’s eternal security said to be guaranteed by a single, isolated act of faith” (George Allen Turner and Julius R. Mantey, The Gospel According to John, p. 99, who for the final sentence, given as footnote 20, cite E. A. Mills, “Terms for Belief in John’s Gospel”; thesis in Asbury Theological Seminary, 1952).

    The Newberry Bible states “The present tense … also expresses continuation in the present….” (page 671 of the Kregel edition).

    Kenneth Wuest draws attention in his Preface to his Expanded Translation to his rendering of Matthew 7:7, “Keep on asking for something to be given and it shall be given you. Keep on seeking, and you shall find. Keep on reverently knocking, and it shall be opened to you.”

    This falls under the subject of Aspect which I discussed above in a prior comment. Unfortunately, even those translations (like Williams and Wuest) which are intended to more accurately present the meaning of the underlying original Greek text often are not consistent in preserving these distinctions everywhere they are found. In this regard, Young’s Literal Translation is often more consistent. Of course the markings employed by Newberry in his Bible do consistently mark these features for the English reader of the King James Version.

    It is evident that God in His providence chose to bring us His written Word in two languages, Hebrew, and Greek. The Greek language is unique in its grammatical precision. When I was taking second-year Greek at Bob Jones University we had to learn by heart the “bone-yard chart.” That is the large fold-out chart in the back of the Dana and Mantey text on Greek grammar that we used. I suspect that the chart was nicknamed the “bone-yard chart” because many students “died” in their pursuit of further studies in Greek grammar when they were unsuccessful in mastering that chart. But the point is that grammatical features are not to be dismissed. They are essential to correctly understanding the meaning of the text. Failure to properly account for the meaning conveyed by these fine distinctions leads to mistaken interpretations, false doctrine, and yes, heresy.

    I’m not talking about heresy as defined by some man-made teaching authority. I’m talking about heresy as defined by God’s written word found in the Bible.

    The Bible makes it quite clear that there are two principal forms of apostasy: doctrinal apostasy (which I would consider including heresy), and moral apostasy. Either form of apostasy, if believed in or pursued as a life style, respectively, constitutes apostasy, and apostasy leads to loss of eternal life.

    Moral apostasy is well-defined by Paul in 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 and its parallel passages.

    Doctrinal apostasy is reflected in the nature of the warning given by Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:2 and its parallel passages. It is reflected elsewhere in such a passage as Galatians 1:6-8 and its parallel passages. The parallel passages to which I refer may be found by consulting the cross references in the original Treasury of Scripture Knowledge, or more completely, in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge, or Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible.

    Five-Point Calvinism is “another Gospel,” a system of belief that would not be derivable by an independent reader of the Bible on Robinson Crusoe’s Desert Island using non-denominational Bible study tools like Strong’s Concordance, sources of cross references like those I just named, and such lexicons and grammars as the skill of the reader might permit, in conjunction with a careful reading of a plain text Bible.

    Most of us have considered Calvinism just another form of Evangelical Bible-believing doctrine, doctrines not all agree with, but considered orthodox. I have come to the conclusion after considerable careful study that the deviation from Scripture present in Calvinism is much more serious than that. I grant that there are indeed variations in belief among those who consider themselves Calvinists. My friend Pastor Norman Douty wrote a book showing that many sound Calvinists in the Puritan movement did not accept the “L” in TULIP, the doctrine of “limited atonement.” But the error of Calvinists and many others goes deeper than that. All five points are in error because they do not accord with what the Bible itself teaches. My original article above provides some of the Biblical and grammatical evidence to support my claim.

    I will return to add more to my answer and response to your questions and assertions. But I must get back to work on my project.

    Thank you for bringing up the questions for discussion as you have done. I trust this response will help you see the vital importance of paying careful heed to the finer distinctions preserved in the Grammar of the Greek New Testament. I believe in the divine verbal inspiration of the Bible, and I believe the grammar is included under that divine inspiration.

    John 6:65 will be a most fruitful text for study in the light of Greek grammar and syntax!

  32. David says:

    Jerry,

    I say this with Love!!!!

    We are not going to come to an agreement or at least make headway because we are both not on an even playing field. Some of your answers in the above posts are derived with you being the sole authority on the subject.

    The reason I asked you if you went to a Church is because I aready had a strong notion that you are not apart of any Church!!! Even the churches you said that you would possible attend if you where in the area I have a strong notion that you would just be a visitor. You would not consider yourself to be a member!!!

    You are like the Lone ranger believing you are smarter than the rest of us taking the matters into your own hands.

    Even your statement on heresy,”

    “I’m not talking about heresy as defined by some man-made teaching authority. I’m talking about heresy as defined by God’s written word found in the Bible.”

    This is over the top and going to far. I guarantee 90% of Pastors you talked to come to agreement of what the word heresey means. Your statement above is a waste of time and shows how self indulgent you are. I suspect that you have arguments constantly with people because your are always clarifying terms the way you believe they should be identified.

    Also you are talking in circles….Quote You said:

    “Somewhere above I wrote:
    “Greek grammar will not tolerate the viewpoint of Calvinism, but refutes it absolutely at every point and turn. No Calvinist has ever dared to address the grammar of the Greek New Testament and use it to support the position of Calvinism.
    I STAND BY MY STATEMENT.” End Quote

    FIRST YOU SAID YOU DIDN’T MAKE THIS STATEMENT…QUOTE YOU SAID:
    ” You fault me for making rather ABSOLUTE statements regarding Calvinists and their use of Greek grammar to affirm their doctrinal position. I said NO Calvinist has EVER properly exegeted John 3:16 to support their system of doctrine.”

    Read above…..I corrected you on this. You DIDN’T admit to the error. What you did instead was take ownership later of the statement saying” I STAND BY MY STATEMENT”.

    What you do is never admit to an error…you just bypass it talking in circles.

    Next…..

    You bring up again John 3:16??? Why????
    I aready said it is irrelavent in the arguement.

    The problem is you want to talk about the way YOU understand ONE form of Calvanism. I have already shown you what Total depravity means from many Calvanists around the world hence Got Questions.Org. So if get the Total depravity statement wrong the rest of the 5 points will not make sence.

    FURTHER neither Calvinism or Arminism has ever be called a Heresy by the Body of the CHURCH as a whole from both sides.

    It has only been called a hersey by misinformed people and Jerry!!!! Since Jerry is not apart of the Church Body or claims to be…he is giving his opinions based on HIS findings….

    Also yes it is very easy to come to arrival of Calvanism on a desert island reading the Bible alone. Starting with a Corect form of Total Deopravity…..

    We are not going to come to some sort of understanding when we can’t even agree on the word Heresey. Again…instead of admitting you should have used another word you give me this long statement of what would means Biblically according to the way you understand it.

    The word Heresy is grounds for total damnation. Therefore you just condemed the MAJORITY of the Church body to hell based of them agreeing with any of the points of Calvanism.

  33. David says:

    Wow and yes I mispell words..forgive me because I am at work and typing to fast.

  34. ken sagely says:

    hello jerry alot of good points in the discussion on calvinism whether for or against. but i dont want to forget the basics! day by day christian walk.

    christ the center gal 2.20, the word josh 1.8, ii tim 3.16, prayer jn 15.7, ph 4.6-7, witnessing mt 4.19, rom 1.16, fellowship mt 18.20 heb 10.24-25, obedience to christ
    rom 12.1, john 14.21

  35. David says:

    Ken,

    Great Post above….I noticed you started off with Christ the Center Gal 2.20…..which is excellent. Your statement above was absolutly correct. What Church do you go to?

  36. David says:

    Last thing I wanted to point out on Total Depravity. This taken from gotquestions. I took this from the article. You can read the Full article here:

    Read more: http://www.gotquestions.org/total-depravity.html

    Quote:

    Since Scripture is very clear that all of man is affected by sin and so much so that “no one seeks after God,” then how can anyone possibly become a Christian? The answer is that God must overcome man’s depravity in such a way that man is able to recognize his spiritual state and his hopeless condition apart from the grace of God. Man’s spiritually blind eyes must be open and the bondage of sin that renders him hopelessly enslaved must be broken so that he can respond in faith to the gospel message and the atoning work of Christ on the cross. Some Christians believe that God accomplishes this through some type of universal grace whereby God brings man to a condition where he has the ability to choose or reject Him. Others believe that for a man who is “dead in trespasses and sins” to be able to understand and respond to the gospel in faith, he must first be born again or regenerated by the Holy Spirit (John 3:3). It is only after God infuses spiritual life into a dead sinner that he can “see the kingdom of God.” Those that hold this view see this as being a sovereign act of God, whereby men are born again “not of the blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:12-13).

    The reason I brought this paragraph is to explain that if you are a 4 point Calvanist they are going to hold to become Christians that God somehow works in conjuntion with man’s free will through some type of universal grace whereby God brings man to a point of understanding where he has the ability to choose or reject Him.

    Since man cannot choose God the Father which is fully Spiritual. I believe that the universal grace which man can Choose is with Christ God in the flesh and the Gospel. Hence where John 6:65 comes in. ” No one comes to Christ unless God has granted him to do so”. This is done thru a universal grace where all can have the oportunity to atleast come to a point of understanding where as we can make a decision…..

    Once that decision is made man is in an on going process of Sanctification. In this process of UP’s and Downs of faith a truly Reborn Christian the Holy Spirit will not let go of.

    1st John 2:19
    They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, so that it would be shown that they all are not of us.
    John 10-27-28
    “My sheep ahear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and NO one will snatch them out of My hand.

    In this True born Christians the Holy Spirit will nagg at untill he/she dies never giving up or letting go.

    Jerry,
    This is not the Calvanism you are refering to. The Gotquestions site is translated into multiple lanquages around the world and has a huge following. I say this to make a point of not putting every Calvanists in the same boat.

  37. ken sagely says:

    i attend church through the internet currently. i have been independent bible churches in the past. no verses by verse bible teaching church and singing the old gospel hymns. thats my 2 qualifications.

  38. David says:

    Nice…I can tell by the way you said Christ centered…..Alot of Churches today start with man center and what he has to do. Christ is the way in all things!!!

    As long as you focus on him all the other things come together….

  39. ken sagely says:

    david i appreciate your insights hope you continue to share what the lord is teaching you. cross ref guide to the bible, new treasury of scripture knowledge are
    2 reference works i would be with out. jerry wrote them and i praise the lord he did.he helped me alot in my personal bible study through those 2 tools. hang in there on real bible study and share with us!

  40. ken sagely says:

    2 reference works i would not be with out! sorry

  41. David says:

    Ken,

    I am not really understanding what you mean by 2 reference works. Can you explain a little ….thanks…..

  42. David says:

    I there a link to new treasure scripture here somewhere?

  43. ken sagely says:

    the 2 reference works. cross reference guide to the bible hardback and the new treasury of scripture knowledge its on computer. 1992 the new treasury of scripture knowledge
    came in hardback i started using it in my personal bible study and sunday school classes this tool is now on computer only. jerry could explain that better. i am suggesting you would be blest in using them if got a chance.

  44. David says:

    Ahh ok….I understand great…..John McAuthur promotes that book.

    I am at some point going to buy the Logos software after I have exhausted my other options. Its expensive so I need to wait a bit. But its good talking to you Ken keep it up.

    Hopefully at some point you attend a Church again when you get the opportunity. The internet is great for speed of knowledge but it does very little for physical fellowship with others.
    I know if Christ where here he would use the internet but it would not take the place of the physical contact of worship with others. I see the internet as a big problem in the future for the Church because of its ease of access at home.

  45. Jerome Smith says:

    Dear David,

    I appreciate your continued patience with me.

    You wrote in a post above:

    Since man cannot choose God the Father which is fully Spiritual. I believe that the universal grace which man can Choose is with Christ God in the flesh and the Gospel. Hence where John 6:65 comes in. ” No one comes to Christ unless God has granted him to do so”. This is done thru a universal grace where all can have the oportunity to atleast come to a point of understanding where as we can make a decision…..

    I suspect that what you have termed “universal grace” is termed by some who are Arminian in doctrine “prevenient grace,” the concept which they believe is found in such a passage as Philippians 2:13.

    Php 2:13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

    I believe Scripture itself teaches that God works by the Holy Spirit to illuminate His Word, whether that Word of the Gospel is experienced through hearing it preached, or whether it is heard by reading it in the Bible. There is much in Scripture to support this:

    Joh 20:31 But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.

    John under divine inspiration tells us that the purpose of the Gospel of John is to enable those who read it to believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God. He tells us that believing those things, we have life through his name.

    1Pe 1:23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.

    Peter tells us that we are born again by the word of God, in reference to the written Word of God found in the Bible (see the following verses in 1 P 1:24, etc.).

    Jas 1:18 Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.

    Once again, the Bible teaches we are spiritually begotten or born again by means of the “word of truth.” That word of truth is to be found in the Bible.

    Jas 1:21 Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.

    James clearly declares that received with meekness, the engrafted word is able to save our souls. Clearly, therefore, God works through the truth contained in the Bible. As we read and believe it, we are saved. John said so. Peter said so. James said so. Jesus said so too in John 5:24.

    We should be in agreement on this point if we believe the Bible.

    Now as for John 6:65,

    Joh 6:65 And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father. (King James or Authorized Version)

    Joh 6:65 And he said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.” (ESV, or English Standard Version)

    Joh 6:65 So Jesus added, “Because of this I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has allowed him to come.” (NET Bible)

    Joh 6:65 So He continued, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me, unless it is granted to him by my Father.” (Williams Translation)

    Joh 6:65 and he said, `Because of this I have said to you–No one is able to come unto me, if it may not have been given him from my Father.’ (Young’s Literal Translation)

    John 6:65 And He was saying, “For this reason I have said to you that no one is able to come to Me unless it may have been given to him by My Father.” (Lavender NT)

    Both Young’s Literal Translation and the Lavender New Testament translation mark the presence of the subjunctive mood by using the word “may” in their respective translations. Young uses the word “if” in his translation, “if it may not have been given him from my Father.”

    Grammatically, this “if” is the Third Class Condition. This kind of “if” indicates there is a contingency involved, such that if the contingency is met, certain results will follow.

    The preceding context uses the same Greek grammatical construction involving the Third Class Condition expressing contingency in verse 44:

    Joh 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. (KJV)

    Joh 6:44 No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day. (ESV)

    Joh 6:44 No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day. (NET Bible)

    Joh 6:44 no one is able to come unto me, if the Father who sent me may not draw him, and I will raise him up in the last day; (Young’s Literal Translation)

    Joh 6:44 No one is able to come to Me unless the Father, the One having sent Me, may draw him; and I will raise Him up at the last day.” (Lavender NT)

    The only translations which clearly exhibit the presence of the subjunctive mood, “may draw,” are Young’s Literal Translation of the Bible and the Lavender NT.

    It is absolutely crucial to be aware that the subjunctive mood is used in this verse if we are to properly understand what it says.

    Mood in Greek grammar, as with the other verbal aspects, is ingrained in the verb, which Calvinists attempt to negate at issues critical to their doctrine, as here (see Lavender NT, footnote 65).

    Logically, Calvinism cannot base absolute sovereignty and absolute predestination or the doctrine of irresistible grace upon (or in the face of) the “may” of the subjunctive mood in the probable future third class condition here and in verse 65. That would be an absolute contradiction in terms. “May” expresses contingency; the “third class condition” expresses probability, but not certainty, because of the contingency. The “third class condition” asserts that if a specified condition is met, a certain result will follow. Thus, the Calvinistic position is proven absolutely untenable according to the grammar of Scripture. The terms of the contingency are expressed in ver. 37 and ver. 40, and include continuing belief.

    Joh 6:37 all that the Father doth give to me will come unto me; and him who is coming unto me, I may in no wise cast without, (Young’s Literal Translation)

    Joh 6:40 and this is the will of Him who sent me, that every one who is beholding the Son, and is believing in him, may have life age-during, and I will raise him up in the last day.’ (Young’s Literal Translation)

    In this matter, the Scripture is most clear, and Calvinists are proven on this point completely wrong.

    You may need to read and re-read my explanation of the Greek grammar in order to come to the place where you must recognize that my argument is correct.

  46. David says:

    Jerry,

    Thank you for the responding.

    I am still a little concerened about this conversation. We seem to be going in circles. You are making statements without taking what I previously wrote into consideration.

    Every statement you make is talking abount Calvanist as a whole…….

    Which Calvanists are you talking about????

    Second you wrote alot regarding John 6:65.

    You said, “The only translations which clearly exhibit the presence of the subjunctive mood, “may draw,” are Young’s Literal Translation of the Bible and the Lavender NT.

    So out of all the translations two are correct according to what a who’s standard.

    Next….

    Before you get to the “May part” you are talking about it says in Youngs translation

    “No one is able to come unto me”

    The “may part” is after this statement which can be read as in the hands of God whether it happens or does not. Let look at the verse again…..

    Joh 6:44 NO ONE IS ABLE TO COME UNTO ME, if the Father who sent me may not draw him, and I will raise him up in the last day; (Young’s Literal Translation)

    In any case no one is able to come unto the father unless God has some type of hand in it. As I stated earlier God will works in conjuntion with mans will. We do not know how this works!!!!

    Lets just bottom line this……

    So do you believe ANYONE can come to God on their own free will WITHOUT ANY help from God!!!

    A simple Yes or No will suffice……

    I know there a certain situations where you believe Gods helps…that why I said can ANYONE come to God on their own.

    Take in mind any other answer besides a Yes will mean NO….please no long explanations …just a yes or no since this should be a simple question regarding ANYONE….

  47. Jerry says:

    Dear Dave,

    Here is your question:

    So do you believe ANYONE can come to God on their own free will WITHOUT ANY help from God!!!

    A simple Yes or No will suffice……

    Here is my answer:

    YES!

    Of course, your question is posed to unfairly put me in a “box” with no outlet.

    Nevertheless, to say “NO” would entrap me in an artificial quandary posed by the artificially contrived parameters of the system of theology commonly called Calvinism.

    If a person like Robinson Crusoe were stranded after a shipwreck as the only survivor on the deserted island with three good Bibles at hand, and the time to read them, which in the story he did, could the person be saved as a result of simply reading and believing the Bible?

    I gave you the Scripture at length in my immediately preceding post. The answer is very clear, anyone who reads even the Gospel of John and believes what it says will be saved. To suggest no one can read the Gospel of John and believe it is of course contrary to what God says in His written Word.

    If a person knows how to read, he can read the Bible on a deserted island and come to saving faith in our Lord Jesus Christ by believing what the Bible says. The Bible claims to be perspicuous–a big word which simply means “understandable.”

    I personally read the New Testament myself. I read it to learn what it said. I was motivated to do that at the time I did because my utter lack of Bible knowledge proved embarrassing in Sunday school class. I had no knowledge or realization of the fact that I was unsaved when I began reading the pocket New Testament in August of 1953. Yet by reading it on my own, and coming to understand what it said, I learned I was unsaved, and while delivering the Detroit Shopping News on Saturday, November 7, 1953, I stopped for a few moments and prayed silently, and knew from that very moment that I was saved for all eternity.

    I think the Bible is most clear when it says on this subject:

    1Th 2:13 For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.

    I too heard that word of God. I read it. I believed it. It worked effectually in me too. And so will it do for anyone and everyone who will do the same thing.

    Now, as a trained grammarian, my major emphasis in graduate school (took all the courses my major secular university offered in linguistics), I would kindly suggest you consider again that representing properly in an English translation the Greek New Testament matter of grammatical mood or mode, namely the subjunctive mode, is excruciatingly important to arrive at a correct understanding of what the inspired writers of Scripture intended to say. Please carefully review my prior post on this matter again. It is not possible to honestly weasel one’s way around the evidence I presented once it is understood. The subjunctive mood and the matter of contingency involved in the Third Class Condition of the “if” in the original Greek text must be accounted for.

    As far as I am aware, only two English translations faithfully present these grammatical features, and I shared both of them with you.

  48. Jerry says:

    Dear David,

    John 6:44 properly translated reads in English:

    Joh 6:44 No one is able to come to Me unless the Father, the One having sent Me, may draw him; and I will raise Him up at the last day.” (Lavender NT)

    The “drawing” done by the Father is contingent (represented by “unless,” which Young in his translation shows involves the word “if” in the original Greek).

    The contingency is specified in context as, on the part of the individual, to continue to come, which is an idiom for believe.

    The contingency is further directly specified in context as to continue to believe.

    The drawing of the Father is in response to the continuing to come of the individual. And that means to be one who is believing.

    God commands us elsewhere to believe. He does not do the believing for us. We do the believing. As we continue to do so, He draws us to Himself. Making a possibly long story short, the individual who is being drawn because he or she continues to come and continues to believe, ends up being saved as a result.

    The drawing on the part of God is thus stated to be contingent upon the coming and the believing of the individual.

    It is important to translate “may draw,” for the drawing is contingent on the action and response of the individual who continues to believe and come. The contingency does not depend upon some prior arbitrary absolute choice or predestination to heaven or hell on God’s part determined before the worlds began. The only predestination known to the New Testament is that predestination to be conformed to the character of Christ, not to salvation or heaven or hell.

    To not translate the subjunctive mood (may) and the contingency (unless, or if) into English obscures, actually hides the truth the Greek text was intended to convey.

    It is not possible to ethically argue that these features are not there, or to argue that they possess no particular significance. Translations that hide these features are flawed, and do not convey the truth contained in the text. This leads to the promulgation of false doctrine, and enables such doctrines as the whole system of Calvinism represented by Reformed Theology and TULIP as they define the elements of the acronym, to go unchallenged from the word of God, because the truth about these matters has very consistently been left out of our usual translations. Anyone who has taken the time and effort to learn Biblical Greek and to read Greek grammars and lexicons, particularly the Louw Nida Lexicon According to Semantic Domains, will see at once the problems in our usual English translations. Most people have neither the time nor the inclination to dig that deeply into grammar, and I do not fault them for that. We are blessed to have one translation, Young’s Literal Translation, which conveys the truth. At the moment, the second translation I have appealed to is not available to the public for it has not yet been published. I happen to have access to it because I have been asked by the translator to edit the manuscript prior to publication, so I have it here on my computer. It will likely become available later this year or else in 2014, is my guess.

  49. Jerry says:

    Dear David,

    Just another thought, in answer to your specific question:

    You said, “The only translations which clearly exhibit the presence of the subjunctive mood, “may draw,” are Young’s Literal Translation of the Bible and the Lavender NT.

    So out of all the translations two are correct according to what a who’s standard.

    The standard is that of accurate discerning Biblical scholarship.

    No one I have encountered faults Young’s Literal Translation of the Bible. Young authored the famous concordance known by his name. He was a careful scholar, and an accomplished Orientalist, well-acquainted with the Biblical languages and their grammar.

    Dr. Malcolm Lavender has spent the past two decades that I’ve known him in careful scholarship. His translation documents the grammatical issues involved by appeal to modern standard Biblical Greek grammars, which in footnotes to his translation are directly referenced.

    Unless one has an axe to grind in support of a mistaken viewpoint or theology, these sources represent careful reverent believing scholarship.

    It is unfortunate that the English speaking world has been largely deprived of a translation which properly represents the grammatical nuances of the Greek text.

  50. David says:

    Sorry need time to respond thanks for your patience…starting a buisness atm. Will get to it tonight.

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