Monday, December 06, 2004

Get Off the Fence

A friend of mine is contemplating whether to move towards Calvinism or Arminianism. He asked me to review an article by the Calvary Chapel folks which asserts the benefits of a neutral position.

You've probably heard the argument before...both Arminians and Calvinists have good proof texts supporting their position and both sides have godly men we respect, so we can't decide. What we'll do is be charitable to both while affirming neither.

This is just a nice way of saying that Scripture isn't clear enough on the atonement of Christ, the nature of God, and the nature of man to decide between two polar opposite positions like Calvinism and Arminianism. The issue is the clarity of Scripture.

Yes, there are proof texts for both sides. The mistake people make is not realizing that proof-texting has its limits--and almost anything can be proof-texted.

Foundational doctrines are by definition 'whole Bible' doctrines which means to understand them rightly you have to do more than find a couple of verses that support your position.

I hope this helps my friend get off the fence, it gets uncomfortable after a while.

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