[We are] not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. (Romans 1:16)

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Does Anybody Agree with this Quotation IX

by Antonio da Rosa

The Calvinist's View of Divine 'Sovereignty' and Human Responsibility

Staunch Calvinist, Dr. Edwin Palmer, one time Professor of Systematic Theology at Westminster Theological Seminary, from his book, The Five Points of Calvinism:

Concerning divine sovereignty and human responsibility, he writes that the true Calvinist must embrace:

"both sides of the antinomy. He realizes that what he embraces is ridiculous."



Palmer goes on to admit that:

"It is impossible to harmonize these two sets of data [divine sovereignty and human responsibility]"



Palmer concludes it this way:

"This is the awesome biblical asymmetry. God ordains sin and man is to blame."

("Assymetry"!!?? Talk about understatement!)



What does the true Calvinist, according to Palmer, understand the ordination of God to entail?

"God is in back of everything. He decides and causes all things to happen that do happen ... He has foreordained everything 'after the counsel of his will': the moving of a finger, the beating of a heart, the laughter of a girl, the mistake of a typist - even sin"

48 Comments:

  • No.

    I don't agree with the quotes by Palmer. They are ridiculous. But, based upon the false Reformed view of sovereignty, it is the only position one can take.

    By Anonymous Bud, at Tuesday, January 09, 2007 8:08:00 PM  

  • Antonio,

    do you think in order for a choice to be real, that the agent choosing must be autonomous in their ability to choose? In other words does God play any role in "causing" a person to choose or reject Him; or does your defintion of "freedom" require that a person inherently by nature has deliberative power to choose to believe or not on their own?

    And the way they get around this conundrum logically is to engage Aristotelian categories of causality: viz. God is the primary cause of all reality; while inherent to nature itself there is secondary causality (which in a sense means nature is its own cause [sin] while ultimately God is the primary causation behind all reality). I don't buy into the Aristotelian way though.

    I think all one would have to say is that this is a "non-starter" since scripture doesn't fill in any of the details on "how" sovereignty and human responsibility work.

    By Anonymous bobby grow, at Wednesday, January 10, 2007 3:49:00 AM  

  • Bobby,

    I would agree with Calvinism that man is not autonomous.

    One does not have to be autonomous to be free. Autonomy would imply an absolute freedom, where one exists and functions as an absolutely free organism, subject only to his own laws. Who, but God, can claim to such freedom? There are limits to human freedom, but there is freedom, nonetheless.

    Our environment, the limits of our minds and bodies, etc., qualify our freedom. Yet, to a substantial degree, humans are free.

    The Calvinist definition of sovereignty does not allow for any meaningful freedom for man, nor for ultimate responsibility of man.

    For intents and purposes, we must leave the term "autonomous" out of our discussion, I believe. It is a red herring of Calvinism. I will stipulate that there is no autonomy for man in an absolute sense.

    You have to define for me what you mean by 'real'. Do you mean by real: genuine and legitimate?

    We are talking about divine realities here. We are talking about eternal life or death. God is perfect and good.

    Let me ask you a question. Can you conceive of a righteous, perfect, and good being considering a choice to be 'real' if:

    1) it is coereced?
    2) one is chosen over another because there is no ability whatsoever to choose that other, for one reason or another?

    Imagine a mentally challenged man being given a choice, and here is the offer, and how it is given:

    a man stands before the retarded man and has a bowl of ice cream.

    with one hand, he shows the bowl of ice cream to the retarded man, and with the other hand he points to the ice cream. He says, "You have a choice. You can have this ice cream, or..."

    The offering man then goes into a lengthy discourse on how the retarded man can go through an intricate process by which he can be made whole.

    The retarded man cannot understand the second choice. He does not have the ability to comprehend the choice. And if he did have that understanding, the chances are that he would take that second choice.

    But since he has no ability whatsoever to understand that second choice, he chooses the ice cream.

    Was this man given a real, genuine, and legitimate opportunity to choose?

    I don't think so.

    Next you bring in freedom. I hope that you do not equate basic freedoms with autonomy.

    I'll put it to you this way.

    Bobby, does man have the constitutional ability to believe things, propositions, assertions, data, etc.?

    I believe that man has the consititional ability to believe things.

    I believe this:

    man has the deliberative power to choose to consider the claims of Christ. If he does so with the purpose of seeking the truth, and/or striving to enter the narrow gate (Luke 13:24), the Word of God and the Spirit of God will work in such a one their persuading and convincing ministries.

    Believing something is not a choice. But determining to consider the evidence and to be open minded concerning an issue is an act of the will. Deliberation and searching and seeking are all acts of the will which are constitutionally available to men; and as a matter of fact, are powers men use daily.

    I hope I have answered your question.

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Wednesday, January 10, 2007 7:01:00 PM  

  • I completely disagree with that quote.

    What a dangerous thing to say! He is removing all responsibility from himself and “blaming” it on God. That is to say that if I sin, well, it’s not my fault, because God ordained it to be so. Not so. When I sin, it’s my fault, not God’s.

    By Blogger Redeemed, at Thursday, January 11, 2007 5:39:00 PM  

  • I am a Calvinist(mostly) and if the Palmer's statements are indicative of his version of reformed theology, I am in arrant disagreement...

    Your servant for Christ's sake,
    Scribe

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Thursday, January 11, 2007 7:36:00 PM  

  • May I suggest that you quote in full and in context. By lifting the (perceived) "bad bits", you are attempting to paint Calvinism in a bad light.

    Nice try though.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Friday, January 12, 2007 4:53:00 AM  

  • Reformed theology IS a bad painting. By casting light on it, Antonio is simply revealing it for what it is: a looming fatalistic supernaturalism that destroys incentive and motivation by reducing assurance to a subjective interpretation of one's works based upon the conscience's understanding of its internal state.

    Antonio is simply bringing to light the stuff that most Reformed people either don't know, or don't want broadcast.

    By Anonymous Bud, at Friday, January 12, 2007 6:45:00 AM  

  • Thank you, Antonio. I think men have freedom to choose--but given their fallen nature I don't think they will ever choose God's way, only their own. Something has to happen, in order for man to "want" to choose God. I don't think man, by fallen nature, is constituted in a way that he can rightly deliberate about the things of God--so I believe God must do something to man's nature before this "deliberation" by man (about Christ) can ever take place.

    By Anonymous bobby grow, at Saturday, January 13, 2007 2:31:00 AM  

  • I agree with Jenson. I sense a straw man here . . . as usual.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Saturday, January 13, 2007 11:52:00 AM  

  • "I agree with Jenson. I sense a straw man here . . . as usual."

    I hope this is not true, but if it is, how can this be any different than JW's misquoting Trinitarian scholars to say they capitulate of unitarian views?

    -Scribe

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sunday, January 14, 2007 12:06:00 PM  

  • to** unitarian views?

    -Scribe

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sunday, January 14, 2007 12:08:00 PM  

  • It is funny.

    Describe the Calvinist and you are charged with not understanding him.

    Quote the Calvinist and you are charged with misquote.

    The quotes are what they are. You may check them out if you like. Edwin Palmer called a spade a spade.

    I did not misrepresent him. Prove to me that I did.

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Sunday, January 14, 2007 7:19:00 PM  

  • Antonio, just out of curiosity, and I don't really care if you have or haven't, but have you actually read Palmer's book? I ask because

    "both sides of the antinomy. He realizes that what he embraces is ridiculous."

    that is a quote from someone else that says aboslutely nothing about what Palmer was talking about.

    How about this:
    "It is impossible to harmonize these two sets of data [divine sovereignty and human responsibility]"

    Can you tell me what page it is found on, and the full context that it was given in?

    And your last quote:
    "God is in back of everything. He decides and causes all things to happen that do happen ... He has foreordained everything 'after the counsel of his will': the moving of a finger, the beating of a heart, the laughter of a girl, the mistake of a typist - even sin"

    Can you tell me the page this is on and the context he establishes for why he says it?

    Thanks.

    In the mean time, I'll take down my copy of the book so we can compare answers.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Sunday, January 14, 2007 8:08:00 PM  

  • Antonio, you are welcomed to reject Calvinism - that is fine, many do. But to go on a campaign to criticise what you do not understand is embarressing.

    Stick to your day job.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Monday, January 15, 2007 3:03:00 AM  

  • Doug, it is not a quote from someone else. It is Palmer.

    Palmer teaches that the doctrine of God’s absolute sovereignty and man’s responsibility is a logical paradox. It cannot be resolved before the bar of human reason. The Calvinist, says Palmer, “in the face of all logic,” believes both sides of the paradox to be true, even though he “realizes that what he advocates is ridiculous.” Pg 85

    Palmer writes in his book, The Five Points of Calvinism: “Over against these humanistic views, the Calvinist accepts both sides of the antinomy. He realizes that what he advocates is ridiculous.... And the Calvinist freely admits that his position is illogical, ridiculous, nonsensical, and foolish” Pg 85

    Palmer [pg 24f] lays the ground with a definition of foreordination: "...God's sovereign plan, whereby He decides all that is to happen in the entire universe. Nothing in the world happens by chance. God is in back of everything. He decides and causes all things to happen that do happen. He is not sitting on the sidelines wondering and perhaps fearing what is going to happen next. No, he has foreordained everything 'after the counsel of his will' (Eph. 1:11): the moving of a finger, the beating of a heart, the laughter of a girl, the mistake of a typist -- even sin. (See Gen. 45:5-8; Acts 4:27-28...)"

    Doug, see pages 85-87 and 97-100

    By Blogger Antonio, at Monday, January 15, 2007 7:30:00 PM  

  • Antonio, you didn't answer Gojira's question: did you actually read all of the book or are you fishing for quotes?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Monday, January 15, 2007 8:56:00 PM  

  • You guys are amazing. Rather than debate the issue you engage in ad hominem attacks like, "You're not smart enough to understand, so shut up!" (jenson) or "You're dishonest because you didn't quote the whole book in that post" (head) or "Ha! You forgot to put page numbers!" (gojira).

    You guys crack me up. You come here to a post that asks, "Do you agree with Palmer?" and instead of having the, um, ah, testosterone to admit you believe this bilge, you attack Antonio.

    Why not simply answer the question? It isn't hard. It's not a trick. Lots of people have read his stuff and said, "Right on P!"

    I'm waiting for the day when a Calvinist can engage in an intelligent discussion without calling names. It has been 30 years and counting...

    By Anonymous bud, at Tuesday, January 16, 2007 3:55:00 AM  

  • Hi Bud,

    I'm waiting for the day when a Calvinist can engage in an intelligent discussion without calling names. It has been 30 years and counting...

    Actually it has been >500 years, and counting... welcome to the "Calvinism vs. Arminianism" war.

    Please read my comment carefully, Bud, I am not attacking Antonio. Pity, he did not extend the same manners when he commented on my blog.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tuesday, January 16, 2007 4:37:00 AM  

  • Antonio, your very first one was this:

    ""both sides of the antinomy. He realizes that what he embraces is ridiculous."

    That is someone commenting on Palmer. Palmer nowhere in the book referrs to himself as "he" in the text, that is, in the third person. The quote from whoever this is doesn't establish the context of what Palmer said, and why he said it. So when you write: "Doug, it is not a quote from someone else. It is Palmer." I know that isn't correct.

    The remainder of what you gave didn't answer what I asked you. I asked you to establish the context yourself. If you have the book, you should be able to do that. What it appears to me that you have done was to paste something from someone else, perhaps Hunt.

    So just come out and say it, do you have the book or not? If you don't, that is fine. If you do, that is fine. If you do, then we can certainly go over what he wrote.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Tuesday, January 16, 2007 4:48:00 AM  

  • Bud,

    "Ha! You forgot to put page numbers!" (gojira)."

    That is an amazing accusation, Bud. I am just trying to see if he actually has the book or not. If he does, then we can talk about the specific arguments that Palmer made. If he doesn't, that point would be moot. Asking him for more info is not an attack on him. It is just that, asking for more info. For example, the very first quotation he gave is not from Palmer, although it is one about Palmer's book. You will also notice that I have not called Antonio a name. In fact, I don't see where anyone called Antonio a name. So you have no point there, no complaint.

    Now if you would like to discuss Calvinism, I would be happy to do that with you. Just say when.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Tuesday, January 16, 2007 4:59:00 AM  

  • jenson,

    Not to put too fine a point on it, the "Calvinism" v. "Arminianism" dispute is < 500 yrs, but it is getting close! There is an irony in that Calvin would not identify himself as a Calvinist today, nor would Jacobus Arminius identify himself as an Arminian. The theology being debated is British Calvinism under the influence of Beza (who was not, of course, British), Perkins, Hooker, Rogers et al.

    And I wonder why it is that everyone thinks that these are the only two options?

    Gojira,

    To imagine that Antonio would quote from a book which he does not in fact own or has not read is to accuse him of intellectual dishonesty. If you did not intend to do so, that's fine. But that is the net meaning of what you conveyed, whether you intended to or not. IF you did intend to convey that, then shame on you.

    By Anonymous Bud, at Tuesday, January 16, 2007 5:50:00 AM  

  • Bud,

    I have not accused him of anything. Asking him if he has read a book is not accusing him of anything. If you noticed, I twice said that if he did not, then that was fine, and if he did, then that was fine. That way there can be a discussion since Palmer's presentation is what is in view. If he hasn't read it, then it would be moot to try to engage Antonio on the topic since Antonio would not have the needed material from Palmer to discuss Palmer's arguments. It's really that simple, Bud. It has nothing to do with charging him with dishonesty.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Tuesday, January 16, 2007 9:48:00 AM  

  • Bud, I don't know what is worse, attacking someone for a valid question, or lying about what they said (a trend that I see at this blog). Please tell me where I said the following:

    ""You're dishonest because you didn't quote the whole book in that post" (head)"

    It also looks like you’re one of the “Chosen but Free” disciples. You might enjoy reading some reviews of that book here.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tuesday, January 16, 2007 11:34:00 AM  

  • Antonio, don't you get tired of people telling you that you are misrepresenting Calvinism? After years of hearing that, don't you think there might be some merit to it?

    I would think that you would be more effective if you would deal with Calvinism fairly and then to critique it on its own grounds. Instead, you always get bogged down debating your misrepresentations instead of the real issues. Just a friendly suggestion.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tuesday, January 16, 2007 11:55:00 AM  

  • Hey Antonio,

    Don't worry about it. I'll blog about the quotes and what Palmer is saying and be done with it. Considering the implications of the simple forknowledge view (something I am going to blog on as well), I would say Calvinism is rather tame.

    Thanks for your time, and blessings to you.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Tuesday, January 16, 2007 2:20:00 PM  

  • Bud,

    It is my observation that you have been responding to Gojira, Jenson,and Jonathon in an ignominious tone. Regardless of theological disparities held regardng Calvinism, these are your brothers in Christ, shall ye requite them with derogatory dictum. I fail to see where Gojira is accusing Antonio of intellectual dishonesty...

    I am inclined to believe that a friendly rapport has been established between Antonio and Gojira(i.e. note how Antonio adresses Gojira). Your own ad hominem attacks are indicative of the personal subjectivity you seem to post under.

    -Scribe

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tuesday, January 16, 2007 6:15:00 PM  

  • Doug. I have read the book and have it sitting before me right now. It is a very small book, that would only take a short while to read.

    I am certain you are wrong. The quotes that I give are advocated and defended by Edwin Palmer himself. He uses the third person as a literary device.

    Discussing the sovereingty of God and the freedom of man, he gives two options as "solutions" that he does not agree with: Arminianism and Hyper Calvinism (see 84-85).

    Next he states the position that he indeed advocates: Calvinism.

    "Over against these views, the Calvinist [Palmer obviously includes himself in this designation as this is the position he is advocating] accepts both sides of the antinomy [that God is absolutely sovereign, having foreordained every thing down to the minutest detail, yet man is to blame for his sin]. He realizes that what he [the Calvinist, of which Palmer is and advocates the position of] advocates is ridiculous. It is simply impossible for man to harmonize these two sets of data." Pg 85

    Next he says:

    "And the Calvinist freely admits that his position is illogical, ridiculous, nonsensical, and foolish... The Calvinist holds to two apparently contradictory positions... [He does so] in the face of all logic." pg 85

    The last quote, is Palmer's discussion of "foreordination" (pg 24-25)

    "Foreordination means God's sovereign plan, whereby He decides all that is to happen in the entire universe. Nothing in this world happens by chance. God is in back of everything. He decides and causes all things to happen that happen. He is not sitting on the sidelines wondering and perhaps fearing what is going to happen next. No, He has foreordained everything 'after the counsel of his will' (Eph. 1:11): the moving of a finger, the beating of a heart, the laughter of a girl, the mistake of a typist -- even sin."

    So Doug,

    instead of beating around the bush. Do you agree with what Palmer says or not? And if you do not, tell me why? He seems to call a spade a spade and candidly discusses the predicament that Calvinists have put themselves in.

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Wednesday, January 17, 2007 4:09:00 PM  

  • Bud has not engaged in any ad hominem. I, too, am simply amazed that we are discussing periphery rather than the established 'bilge' ;) quotes of Palmer.

    I say that Palmer had the cajones to actually say what cannot be denied about Calvinism.

    Hey Jonathan Moorhead. Do you agree with Palmer or not?

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Wednesday, January 17, 2007 4:24:00 PM  

  • hey Doug,

    by the way. How come I can't access your blog anymore? it is taking me to some spam! and locking up my explorer.

    By Blogger Antonio, at Wednesday, January 17, 2007 4:25:00 PM  

  • Antonio,

    I had the same problem w/ Gojira's blog, fortunately he has rectified the problem...

    Here's his new web address,http://gojiras-stomping-ground.blogspot.com/.

    -Scribe

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Wednesday, January 17, 2007 4:49:00 PM  

  • "I am certain you are wrong. The quotes that I give are advocated and defended by Edwin Palmer himself. He uses the third person as a literary device."

    And I am certain that you are not right. :-) Palmer doesn't refer to himself as "he"

    I'll answer your question this way:

    I agree with the book.

    And, like I said, I am going to blog about it.
    *******************************

    Bud,

    I will be critiquing your short article concerning why one should not be a Calvinist. It will be up this weekend.

    You will find it here:

    http://gojiras-stomping-ground.blogspot.com/
    *********************************

    Antonio,

    I got an email from Bobby. He has closed down and deleted his blog site. He is having some bad tendon problems, and also wants to devote more time to his family.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Thursday, January 18, 2007 6:56:00 AM  

  • The same thing happened when I tried to access Gojira. My computer started getting these very undesirable pop-ups about things in my computer that could compromise my life. Is that the same that you got Antonio? I thought I had gotten a Trojan or another spy. I did not know it was a result of going to Gojira's URL.

    By Blogger Rose~, at Thursday, January 18, 2007 7:47:00 AM  

  • Bobby deleted his blog?
    No way!

    By Blogger Rose~, at Thursday, January 18, 2007 7:55:00 AM  

  • Yeah, where have you gone Bobby our good friend?

    By Blogger Jim, at Thursday, January 18, 2007 9:39:00 AM  

  • Doug,

    it is impossible for you to convince anyone who has read this book that Palmer is not advocating what he describes as Calvinism. If you would ONLY look at it in the book, you would know. But it seems to me that you either have not read it, or haven't looked at it in a while...

    He had just dismissed Arminianism and Hyper-Calvinism. He next gives the position of the Calvinist, WHICH HE ADVOCATES.

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Thursday, January 18, 2007 4:02:00 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Friday, January 19, 2007 8:03:00 AM  

  • Thanks Doug, we will miss him and his scholarly posts. I understand about the time constraints however.

    Hey Bobby, perhaps you could do a video blog? Short sermonettes or devotionals?

    Many blessings brother.

    By Blogger Jim, at Friday, January 19, 2007 8:39:00 AM  

  • You are very welcome, Jim.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Friday, January 19, 2007 9:07:00 AM  

  • Antonio,

    Of course Palmer is advocating Calvinism. He is a Calvinist. And yes, Antonio, I have read his short little book a few times now. As has many other people. However, I do not read him selectivily. I also read him in context.

    For example, you very first quote:
    ""both sides of the antinomy. He realizes that what he embraces is ridiculous."

    In context he is talking about how rediculous it appears to the world's thinking. What he wasn't doing was calling Calvinism a rediculous system.

    His thing about harmonizing Divine Sovereignty and human responsibility (the impossibility of it) is pretty much right on the mark. It has been my experience to note that only extremists attempt to do so. I gladly affirm with the scriptures: "Who are you to talk back to God, O man...has not the Potter no right over His clay?" The exremist replies back. The extremeist has tons of company.

    But I have no problem with the book because I neither read it selectivily nor out of context.

    __________________________________

    Rose,

    My computer did the same exact thing, so you are not alone.

    _________________________________


    Jim and Rose,

    His email states:
    "Doug,

    I have dumped my blog, I need to quit blogging for a couple of reasons, at least, primary of which is that I have tendonitis in both arms, and I think I am developing Carpal Tunnel--blogging is not worth it to me. Also blogging has become to much of a priority for me, actually stealing time away from me that I would otherwise be spending in the Word of God--so its not worth it in that regard either."

    Then he wrote something personal to me that I'm not going to share. All I'll say is this, Bobby is one of the best people anyone could ever meet. May God bless him richly.

    His ending words were:
    "I plan to at least stay off and out of the blogosphere for at least a year, that's my goal anyway. It's going to be hard for me, but I think I need to do this for now. If anyone is curious where I went, maybe you could let them know."

    By Blogger Gojira, at Friday, January 19, 2007 9:23:00 AM  

  • DOUG:

    Can you read this totally in context?

    "Over against these humanistic views, the Calvinist accepts both sides of the antinomy. He realizes what he advocates is ridiculous"

    What is so hard to understand here?

    Palmer is saying the the Calvinist realizes what he advocates is ridiculous! This is not to the world's thinking! The CALVINIST REALIZES it! Not the WORLD!

    Furthermore, go down a bit on the same page:

    "AND THE CALVINIST FREELY ADMITS THAT HIS POSITION IS ILLOGICAL, RIDICULOUS, NONSENSICAL, AND FOOLISH"

    Next he says, "This is in accord with Paul..."

    Doug,

    Palmer is putting words into the mouths of CALVINISTS, not attributing these remarks and sentiments to anti-calvinists!

    Do you have a copy of this book?

    Open to page 85 and read it for yourself.

    You are in error my friend, and it just does not become you.

    You say "I agree with the book"

    I am glad that you do!

    You would therefore see Calvinism the same way as Palmer did:

    illogical, ridiculous, nonsensical, and foolish

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Friday, January 19, 2007 2:53:00 PM  

  • Antonio asks:
    "Can you read this totally in context?"

    Yes, indeed I can and have. I might ask, though, if you are able to read it in context.

    Antonio asks:
    "What is so hard to understand here?"

    Nothing, which is why I am able to read it in context and you apparently are not able.

    Please notice how Palmer constructs his argument, Antonio. In (A) Palmer gave the humanistic solution of Armininism, humanity rationalizing from the view of his "creaturly" freedoms. In (B) he gives the humanistic reasoning of the hyperCalvinist. Both attempts are from purely humanistic reasonings, and both extremisms because both present the problem in a way that makes rational sense, thereby doing away with any paradox, or tension. The Extremeist always does that.

    Then we come to the part which you apparently don't understand. Palmer is arguing against those two positions. When he does so, he uses a writing techinique where he incorporates those humanistic reasonings with his position. ***That is why he calls it illogical and ridiculous. He is doing so from the standpoint of their view, which does not accept the mystery of how God can be totally sovereign and in control of all and yet hold humanity responsible for their own sin.*** Let me repeat that in another way, in the face of humanistic logic it ***IS*** in the appearance of irrionality. Why? Because the natural person can not accept it.

    Notice what Palmer writes and you fully demonstrate by your lack of understanding:

    "To many people, such a position seems foolish. It is unreasonable. So the Calvinist has to make up his mind: what is his authority? His own human reason or the Word of God."

    Now that right there in itself proves my case that he is comparing this from the standpoint of the world's reasoning. When he says that his position is irritional and foolish, he is doing so from the standpoint of the humanistic reasonings he gave previously from solutions (A) and (B). From their viewpoint it is. He knows that and accepts that.

    ***My goodness, Antonio, you didn't even give the whole quote.*** And the fact that you are arguing the way you are makes me wonder if you are being dishonest to misrepresent him on purpose or just can not comphrend the section (C) that you have selectivily quoted from.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Saturday, January 20, 2007 9:49:00 AM  

  • Doug.

    What do these words in English mean?

    "The Calvinist freely admits"

    Is Palmer attributing the position of an anti-calvinist to the Calvinist?

    What do these words in English mean?

    "the Calvinist... realizes that what HE advocates..."

    He is not "doing so from the standpoint of their [the Arminian and Hyper Calvinist] view".

    HE IS ATTRIBUTING THOUGHTS, WORDS, AND SENTIMENTS TO THE CALVINIST THROUGH THE CALVINIST'S OWN:

    a) ADMISSION: "The Calvinist FREELY ADMITS..." and
    b) REALIZATION: "The Calvinist REALIZES..."

    That Palmer states "To many people such a position seems foolish" does not detract from his statements he has already made concerning the Calvinist's ADMISSION and REALIZATION. He is stating not only does the Calvinist FREELY ADMIT that his position is illogical and foolish, so do others.

    The difference he is making out, Doug, is that:

    1) Although the Calvinist both ADMITS and REALIZES (using his God given reasoning skills) that his position is foolishness and illogical, he MUST BELIEVE IT ANYWAY BECAUSE THAT IS WHAT HE BELIEVES THE BIBLE TO TEACH. "He cannot reconcile the two; but seeing that the Bible clearly teaches both, he accepts both."

    2) Many non-calvinists think it is foolish and cannot see that God, being who He is, is shrouded in mystery and although man "cannot reconcile the two" (pg 86) "God can" (pg 85 note). Many non-Calvinists cannot accept such a paradox, therefore think it foolish.

    Calvinists both REALIZE and ADMIT that there doctrine is foolish, illogical, ridiculous, and nonsensical. Yet they believe it anyway, because that is what they believe the Bible to teach.

    Palmer goes on to say that they do so "in the face of all logic".

    You quote it, Doug. But what does it mean?

    "So the Calvinist has to make up his mind: what is his authority? His own (IOW, THE CALVINIST'S OWN) human reasoning (by which he freely admits and realizes that what he advocates is ridiculous, illogical, nonsensical, and foolish) or the Word of God?" (pg 86)

    ***The fact that you are arguing the way you are makes me wonder if you are being dishonest to misrepresent him on purpose or just can not comphrend the section (C) that you have selectivily quoted from.

    By Blogger Antonio, at Saturday, January 20, 2007 1:08:00 PM  

  • The reason that Palmer can say such things is his adherence to a Van Tillian framework, whereby logic is reduced to nothing, and the Scriptures are full of apparent contradictions.

    Palmer admits that, logically, his doctrine is ridiculous, foolish, nonsensical, and illogical.

    This does not mean much to someone who has a low view of logic (which is the way God thinks).

    Palmer is not ashamed to state that his views are ridiculous, because, the Bible is not rational. It cannot be comprehended rationally, nor understood deductively.

    Palmer has no problems admitting that his view is ridiculous and foolish and illogical. This is because he believes that Scripture is not rational and does not make sense. The exegesis (can we even use that word of the Van Tillians?) that comes from such a position is but superficial. Therefore many contradictions will be assumed.

    Two introductory articles on this is very good reading:

    The Westminster Confession of Faith and Logic

    and

    Why I Am Not a Van Tillian

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Saturday, January 20, 2007 1:56:00 PM  

  • This is funny Antonio, as you are now apparently given to the rantings of hyperCalvinists. They were discussed by Palmer under solution B that talked about mere human wisdom.

    In other words Antonio, they are the extremists that go the other way than you do, but for the exact same reasons....mere human reasoning that cannot accept mystery.

    Since you say that you have read the book you should know this since it is something he talked about in the section directly before the part where you take him out of context.

    As for the posts you made at my place, they have already been answered.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Saturday, January 20, 2007 3:55:00 PM  

  • Oh, the "given to the rantings of hyperCalvinists" has to do with the two links you gave.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Saturday, January 20, 2007 3:57:00 PM  

  • Doug,

    my case has been made and the observer is now entitled to consider our positions on the "Palmer" text.

    Palmer is explicit. He takes his view of divine sovereignty and human responsiblity, "in the face of all logic" (pg 85)

    Therefore, he ADMITS and REALIZES that his position is illogical, ridiculous, nonsensical, and foolish.

    He has called a spade a spade. And frankly the logical implications of his view of Scripture, that it contains many "apparent" contradictions, is that one cannot rationally understand the bible.

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Saturday, January 20, 2007 5:57:00 PM  

  • You bring up a new charge (falsely) now.

    Regardless, you have been told the truth of the situation, of what he was talking about. The fact that you claim to have the book and yet continually misrepresent him is astounding. In fact, it speaks volumes.

    By Blogger Gojira, at Monday, January 22, 2007 2:58:00 AM  

  • Yeah, I am crazy, Rose knows me to well ;~) . . . I'm back again, with stipulations (as you'll see in my post). I really don't do this for the attention, when I delete my blogs :), I really do have all the intentions in the world to quit blogging--but I just can't.

    find me at: http://bobbygrow.blogspot.com

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tuesday, January 23, 2007 2:53:00 AM  

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