[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)

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Matthew, the Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, is a Calvinist

Classical Arminianism

I was looking at recent links to this blog and I discovered this one. According to the writer, Matthew is an "overzealous, and no doubt young and immature, Calvinist." I laughed out loud. We have been called Arminians by the Calvinists and now Calvinists by the Arminians.

27 Comments:

  • Welcome to the frozen chosen, Matthew, the group that chooses you! ;)

    By Blogger VA ~Susan, at Saturday, October 27, 2007 11:50:00 AM  

  • Matthew,
    Do you consider yourself chosen by God before the foundation of the world to be conformed to image of Christ?

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Saturday, October 27, 2007 2:08:00 PM  

  • Rose, I think overall our theology is influenced by the Reformed tradition.

    Even Dispensationalism had its origins among Calvinists.

    Arguably we are deviant Calvinists.

    God Bless

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Sunday, October 28, 2007 1:41:00 AM  

  • Va-Susan, does this mean I have to start wearing a kilt?

    I dont mind eating lots of Haggis.

    Or am I a French Calvinist like Calvin?

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Sunday, October 28, 2007 1:43:00 AM  

  • Wayne, yes, but I would understand that rather differently to you.

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Sunday, October 28, 2007 1:43:00 AM  

  • Matthew,
    I understand it the way Romans 8:28-30 and Eph. 1:4-5 teach it. How do you understand it?

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Sunday, October 28, 2007 7:06:00 AM  

  • Wayne,

    I am sure that Matthew understands it the way those and many other verses teach it also.

    Thing is, that his understanding of those verses do not share your Calvin-fatalistic interpretation, I am sure.

    By Blogger Antonio, at Sunday, October 28, 2007 9:01:00 AM  

  • Wayne, can you not ask me about rapture timing or whether angels have bodies?

    I believe in the election and predestination of those who are in Christ by faith to being made conformable to our blessed Saviour.

    God Bless

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Sunday, October 28, 2007 9:20:00 AM  

  • Matthew,
    Yes, so you have (cough) told me. Non-Calvinism is born out of (sneeze) Calvinism. hehehe

    By Blogger Rose~, at Sunday, October 28, 2007 12:04:00 PM  

  • Matthew,
    You said...... I believe in the election and predestination of those who are in Christ by faith to being made conformable to our blessed Saviour.

    Matthew from this statement, you seem to affirm that all who are in Christ experience some measure of sanctification (Romans 8). Have you now adopted this lordship sanctification view?

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Sunday, October 28, 2007 12:21:00 PM  

  • No.

    Ultimately all Christians will be conformed to the image of Christ when they are resurrected or changed.

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Sunday, October 28, 2007 12:25:00 PM  

  • Matthew,
    Don't you then think your comment needs clarification? It seems to indicate (and I agree) that all who are in Christ by faith show conformity which is in agreement with Rom. 8. Romans 8 shows that all that are saved are in Christ and are indwelth by the Holy Spirit. Also all that are indwelt by the H.S. are led by the H.S. and are sons of God. If one does not follow, one is not being led. Therefore, clearly all who are saved by being in Christ follow Christ.......

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Sunday, October 28, 2007 1:02:00 PM  

  • Wayne, I do not accept your interpretation of Romans 8.

    Being lead by the Spirit is the mark of a believer who is walking after the Spirit. A believer has the power to do so, by virute of His being in Christ. In being lead by the Spirit, the spiritual believer reveals her sonship. That is why it says 'as many are lead by the spirit, they are the sons of God.'

    But Romans 8 also affirms the possiblity of a believer walking after the flesh.

    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.

    The Christian is positionally in the Spirit and so able to walk in the Spirit, but still posesses a fleshly nature and so has the potential to be carnally minded.

    As regards my comment:

    "I believe in the election and predestination of those who are in Christ by faith to being made conformable to our blessed Saviour."

    All believers will be conformed to Christ at the resurrection.

    I am sure you see that as the ultimate realisation of conformity to Christ.

    I am sure you could not point to many who come close now.

    However, as we have a new nature, we have the power to live a life that is lived in the Spirit and that is Christ-like. But as I said above, we have a nature that is fleshly and this can lead us towards death if we do not realise by faith our position in Christ.

    God Bless

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Sunday, October 28, 2007 1:22:00 PM  

  • Matthew,
    v. 9 You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.

    How do you reconcile v. 9-11 with your view. V.13 is comparing non-believers with believers or else v 9-11 makes no sense........

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Sunday, October 28, 2007 2:39:00 PM  

  • Matthew,

    I am a Calvinist, too! (of the 0 point variety).

    Antonio

    By Blogger Antonio, at Sunday, October 28, 2007 2:42:00 PM  

  • Wayne, the problem with applying v13 to unbelievers is that this is applied to 'ye' the readers, who are also said to be'in the spirit.'

    Verse 9 is a matter of position, verse 13 is a matter of condition.

    The Roman believers are in the Spirit (indwellt by Him and posessing a new nature born of the Spirit).

    However, the realisation of the outworking of this position depends upon their walking in the Spirit.

    In the previous chapter, Paul had revealed his struggles with the irredeemeable flesh crying 'Who shall deliver me from this body of death?' This was the cry of a Christian who had not yet come to realise his new position in Christ through the Spirit.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Monday, October 29, 2007 1:30:00 AM  

  • Antonio, Bob Wilkin was rather more diplomatic, saying there is truth in all of the five points accept the L.

    But given that I do not agree with unconditional election, I cannot really agree with him.

    God Bless

    Matt

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Monday, October 29, 2007 1:32:00 AM  

  • Matthew,
    In your preferred KJV
    Romans 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.

    Matthew, here Paul assumes that his readers are redeemed, but clearly with the word *IF* he explains that all that are redeemed have the Spirit dwelling in them. Further, he says if a man has not the Spirit he is "none of his". He is speaking of unredeemed that do NOT have the Spirit.

    Romans 8:10-14

    (10)And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.

    (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.

    (12)Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.

    (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.

    (14)For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.


    Only those who have the indwelling Spirit are redeemed and v. 13 distinguishes between life after the flesh (unsaved) and life after the Spirit (saved). Remember in v. 9 he clearly says if you are redeemed ye are not in the flesh but in the Spirit. V. 14 then states, the redeemed (saved) not only have the Spirit as v. 9 stated, BUT they are led by the Spirit. To be led by anything means that a person is following. No following means not being led. If it were possible for redeemed people to never follow in any way, this verse would be wrong and have to be restated. If some of the redeemed never follow, then the verse would have said, “Most of the sons of God are led by the Spirit of God.” With this text, there is no wiggle room or possibility for a Christian not to be led by the Spirit. Not led by Spirit= not a son God= not saved.

    I believe Paul’s point in Chapter 7 is comparing the futility of justification by law keeping with the fact that grace saves completely through the Spirit. Enter chapter 8 and the POWER of God. The power of God in redemption is highlighted in Chapter 8 and it is shown that the will of man does not overpower the indwelling Spirit.

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Monday, October 29, 2007 7:31:00 AM  

  • Wayne

    "Matthew, here Paul assumes that his readers are redeemed, but clearly with the word *IF* he explains that all that are redeemed have the Spirit dwelling in them. Further, he says if a man has not the Spirit he is "none of his"."

    Paul makes clear that if a man has not the Spirit, he is unsaved. But he does not suggest this is a possibility of his readers in the way he suggests they may die through walking in the flesh.

    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.

    The 'ye' are redeemed and in the Spirit. The 'any man' (not the readers) may not have the Spirit of Christ.

    In contrast, it is said of the reader that 'if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die', the same ye that is in the Spirit.

    It is vital to distinguish between position and condition.

    "V. 14 then states, the redeemed (saved) not only have the Spirit as v. 9 stated, BUT they are led by the Spirit."

    Paul does not say this is necessarilly the condition of his readers.

    He does not say that everyone who has the Spirit is lead by the Spirit.

    Nor does he resrict sonship to those who are lead by the Spirit.

    Rather those who are lead by the Spirit manifest their sonship.

    If the verse meant what you think it means, it would have to say:

    'Those who are sons are lead by the Spirit most of the time'.

    The fact is that Christians are not always lead by the Spirit.

    When we fall into sin, we are not being lead by the Spirit.

    Your view actually reduces being lead by the Spirit to a pretty miserable level.

    "The power of God in redemption is highlighted in Chapter 8 and it is shown that the will of man does not overpower the indwelling Spirit."

    So when the Christian sins, she is doing the Spirit;s will?

    A Christian who sins is following the Spirit?

    You see, your view offers high pretensions as to the nature of sanctification, but it has to compromise the nature of that sanctification to make it fit the Christian experience.

    "I believe Paul’s point in Chapter 7 is comparing the futility of justification by law keeping with the fact that grace saves completely through the Spirit."

    I totally disagree.

    If the passage were dealing with justification, it would need to be revealing the condition of an unsaved person.

    See what Paul says:

    22 For I delight in the law of God after the inward man:

    Is this the condition of a legalistic Jew who is seeking to be justified by the law?

    An unsaved person does not delight in the law after the inward man. He despises the law of God in his inward man.

    Romans 7 deals with sanctification.

    It reveals the condition of the man who is trying to keep the law. That is futile because the flesh resists the things of God.

    It is only by the Spirit that a person can be sanctified. Attempts to keep the law through obediance will fail.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Monday, October 29, 2007 7:49:00 AM  

  • Good discussion guys. Wayne is asking good questions and Matthew is giving cognizant answers.

    God bless,
    Jim

    By Blogger Jim, at Monday, October 29, 2007 10:20:00 AM  

  • Matthew,
    You said……….
    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.

    The 'ye' are redeemed and in the Spirit. The 'any man' (not the readers) may not have the Spirit of Christ.

    In contrast, it is said of the reader that 'if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die', the same ye that is in the Spirit.

    It is vital to distinguish between position and condition.


    Matthew, if all of the ‘ye’ are redeemed and in the Spirit, Paul would not have included the if clause of “if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you.” But he added the if clause to let them know that he did not know for sure if they were all true believers. Therefore, he added the if clause. He was telling them Ye are in the Spirit, IF you have the indwelling Spirit. ILLUSTRATION: (Ye are not going to hell, but to heaven, if you have faith in Christ. Now if any man have not faith, he is none of his). If we can accept the straight forward literal language of John 6:47, why can’t we accept the straight forward literal language of Romans 8:9?

    Jim thank you for the comment. I realize Matthew is very knowledgeable.

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Monday, October 29, 2007 1:26:00 PM  

  • Matthew,
    If your meaning were correct, it seems Paul would have said in verse 9, "since the Spirit of God dwells in you" instead of "if."

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Monday, October 29, 2007 2:05:00 PM  

  • Wayne,

    "why can’t we accept the straight forward literal language of Romans 8:9?"

    It is your own interpretation that is ignoring the straightforward language of the passage.

    Ther 'if' in verse 9 indicates the contingency of the results on the fact of their being indwellt.

    Let's take a closer look at verse 13.

    Notice the verse that precedes it:

    (12)Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.

    Who is the 'if' addressed to
    brethren.

    So we could paraphrase verse 13:

    "For if my brethren live after the flesh, they will die"

    An unbeliever is not among the brethren. An unbelieving reader of this verse would not be included in it.

    Now these persons who may die after living after the flesh, what is said of them-

    'but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.'

    Only a born-again person could fit this.

    Can an unbeliever choose between living after the flesh and mortofying the the deeds of the body through the Spirit?

    Does an unbeliver have the power to mortify the deeds of the body through the Spirit?

    This is not teaching about the differences between unbelievers and believers; that makes nonsense of the passage.

    This is teaching as to how the Christian should live.

    Every Blessing in Christ

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Tuesday, October 30, 2007 4:12:00 AM  

  • Matthew,
    I am in quite a hurry today, but I did notice your paraphrase of v. 13 brings "brethren" into a verse where brethren is not mentioned. v. 12 where brethren is mentioned actually precludes the possibility of a Christian living after the flesh. V. 13 then sets life (salvation) through the Spirit verses death (unsaved) of living after the flesh.

    To claim that this is just a here and now temporal death is just not consistent with our experience. We see many devout Christians and missionaries die young and many apostates live to ripe old ages. If Paul were just speaking of pyhsical death, then the only conclusion would be that this was an empty threat and the Bible is wrong. Paul did not say ye may die, he said ye shall die.

    Paul is comparing the results of a regenerated Spirit led life verses an unregenerate life.

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Tuesday, October 30, 2007 6:49:00 AM  

  • Matthew,
    Sometimes other Scripture such as 1 John and James are useful in understanding these issues.

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Tuesday, October 30, 2007 6:51:00 AM  

  • Wayne, absolutely and I can think of a number of verses in James and the epistles of John that I would quote in support of my view of that passage.

    God Bless

    Matthew

    By Blogger Dyspraxic Fundamentalist, at Tuesday, October 30, 2007 8:23:00 AM  

  • Matthew,
    Yes, I have heard those unique explanations. Take care.

    By Blogger jazzycat, at Wednesday, October 31, 2007 7:02:00 AM  

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