Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Word, A Song and an Observation

Why do some Arminians and their kin act like Calvinists have never seen
John 3:16?
The difference is in what is emphasized.
The Arminian stresses (or stretches) the "whosoever".
The Calvinist emphasizes the "whosoever BELIEVES'
shall not perish but have everlasting life.
Does God love the world? Certainly! He is the Creator of ALL!
Does God have a special love for His Bride?
You better believe it! He redeemed her for His own!
The Bride in Heaven will have no missing toes or fingers.
In other words, no one will be missing.

Matthew 1:21 says,  "She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus,
for he will save his people from their sins.”


Here is a "hymn" a pastor sent me recently. I asked if I could use it on my blog and give him full credit but, he wanted to donate it to the cause, without official credit: 

To Me Be the Glory
(An Arminian Version of a Once Flawed Hymn)

To me be the glory, great thing I have done;
So loved I my God that I’ve chosen His Son,
Who yielded His life an atonement for sin,
And opened the life gate that ALL may go in.


Praise myself, praise myself,
I have made a good choice!
Praise myself, praise myself,
Such a cause to rejoice!
I’ve chosen the Father, and Jesus the Son,
Now give me the glory, a great thing I have done.

O perfect decision, which adds to His blood,
It causes salvation, or so hopes our God;
The vilest offender who we cause to agree,
That moment from Jesus a pardon receives.


Great thing I’ve accomplished, in subduing my sin,
And great my rejoicing through my decision;
How pure, and how high, and how great I must be
It’s mostly of Jesus, but some is by me.



And now for a simple observation. You may have noticed this before...I just noticed it this morning while doing some anagrams. "Earth" and "Heart" both contain the same letters. I thought that went well with John 3:16.

And now, I close with a quote from Bruce Ware:
"As a wife is to relish, not resist, the exclusive love her husband has for her alone, so God’s people only know His deepest human-directed love as we relish, not resist, the fully unmerited and undeserved exclusive love that God has for His people alone.  These are the people of His making, of His redeeming, whom He has called by name, and who are called by His name.  To know the saving love of God in Christ is to know not merely the universal love of God for all people, but it is to know especially and most deeply this redemptive-covenantal love that God has exclusively for His own people.  As we close, hear afresh these precious words of comfort and admonition from 1 John:  “See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and such we are.  For this reason the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared as yet what we will be.  We know that when He appears, we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is” (1 John 3:1-2) “In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (1 John 4:10) 
So, embrace this special love, this redemptive-covenantal love of God for His own. Be humbled by it, be filled with joy over it, and be empowered to live lives that express the depth of our dependence upon and gratitude for such unspeakably lavish, costly, and undeserved love.


  1. Wonderfully simple explanation of the Reformed understanding of John 3:16...makes so much sense. Truly, because salvation is all of grace, God deserves ALL the glory.

  2. I am a proponent of K.I.S.S.
    (Keep It Simple, Saint)

  3. Awesome post, Eddie.

    The Arminian version of Fanny Crosby's song reminded me of something Challies posted on his blog awhile ago:

  4. Great post, and how interesting to see the logical end of that reasoning.

  5. I read some of the articles on the Society of Evangelical Arminians' web site (the one that commenter "Jake Herman" links to from his name). They seem to reason like this: "We don't understand how God could write the script for redemptive history where God is Sovereign, yet man is responsible. Therefore, He couldn't have done it."

    We Calvinists don't understand how He did it either, but we recognize that it is what the Bible teaches. And we are filled with awe and wonder at His wisdom and His ways.

    "O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!

    For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor?

    Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again?

    For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen."

    (Romans 11:33-36)

  6. I wonder why "Jake Herman" never noticed that. : \

  7. Eddie, you had 311 followers when you posted this and now you have 309. Why can't you just be a little more Arminian for goodness sake?

  8. Wow -

    May I use this on my blog and link back to here?

  9. Of this I am sure - salvation is a gift that must be received by the recipient. Now whether that gift can be refused I will let you all debate that. But if that gift cannot be refused then it seems that salvation is something other than a gift in the way that I understand gifts.

    As for me, I will simply worship the Giver with all my heart.

  10. Ephesians 2:8 states -
    "For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God."

    ...note that it doesn't read -
    "For by faith you have been saved through grace..."

    ...even our faith is a gift.

  11. No argument there Eddie. The question is whether that gift of faith can be refused. If not then my understanding of gifts is askew.

  12. Could you reject the gift of life when you were first born?
    Could Lazarus reject his gift of resurrection?

    A gift according to Wikipedia is a transfer of something without the expectation of receiving something in return.

    I could leave a gift on a grave and it still would be a gift.
    When we preach the Gospel we are preaching to the living and the dead (spiritually speaking).

    The spiritually dead don't care...those that are quickened by the Spirit receive and rejoice.

  13. Thanks Eddie for giving the other side of the proverbial coin. My wife and I were discussing that idea of life being a gift this morning. Using that analogy then all are saved because all have been given the gift of being made in the image of God. using that line of thought one could argue that all have been given the gift of faith when they are born.

    And perhaps Lazarus received the gift of physical life as he was still alive spiritually.

    And I suggest that those graveside flowers are in no way a gift to the deceased. How can there be a giver when there is no recipient?

  14. ...and as crazy as it sounds, Ezekiel preached to a bunch of dry bones and it was successful.
    We are born spiritually dead.
    We need a new birth, a new creation, a spiritual resurrection before we can do anything that would be acceptable to God. The flesh profits zip.
    When Christ drew me to Himself...I really didn't WANT to say no.
    He made me willing.
    He made me want Him.
    ...and I have no complaints.

  15. "We are born spiritually dead."

    Sounds like you are saying that man is not made in the image of God.

  16. We still retain the image of God though fallen. But, the fall not only morphed the world as it was then, but changed every human being since.

    "And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest."
    (NASB) Ephesians 2:1-3

    The lost are the walking dead.
    We were slaves of Satan and sin.
    Only God can give life to the dead.
    Only God can give us that "want to" when it comes to embracing the Lord Jesus Christ.

  17. My thinking is that people who do not have the gift of faith will have an excuse on that last day. How can they be required to believe when it is not possible for them because they were not ever given that gift.

    As for me I believe that no one has an excuse because all people have the ability to receive the gift by saying a simple yes to the Gift of God. Call that "yes" a work if you must but it does not seem to be one to me.

  18. If God did not elect some, all would be damned.

    Because man hates God, and he would never choose God. Never. Not without regeneration.

  19. "If God did not elect some, all would be damned."

    Using that logic it would seem appropriate for God to elect all. If it is all up to God then why not go all the way like the Christian Universalists do? Sending some to eternal conscious torment when they have been given no ability to believe seems odd at best.

    And on the flip-side I am wondering how I got into this dialog. I am not all that passionate about this stuff the way some are.

  20. Oop! I keep checking this thread every few hours to see if the humor has started yet. : )

    Let's see what I can come up with. (This will be at the expense of us Calvinists.)

    Moe: On the way home today I saw a Calvinist on the corner. Poor guy must really be down on his luck.

    Flo: (pause) Okay, I'll bite. So HOW could you tell that he was a Calvinist?

    Moe: Well, he was holding a cardboard sign that had "Will argue and debate for food" written on it.

  21. @Stranger: the reason I love this blog is that it's just fun!

  22.'s also true and thought-provoking, but without all the grumpy seriousness of some other blogs. It gets old reading:
    "Yes it is."
    "No it isn't."
    "Yes it is."
    "No it isn't."
    "Yes it is."
    "No it isn't."
    "Yes it is."
    "No it isn't."

  23. @John Shearhart

    I admit that on occasion I feel compelled to wax elephant on a point of theology; but mostly I just try to make someone laugh. That, and enjoy the good humor from Eddie and the commenters.

    ("good humor." That reminds me; we're out of ice cream.)

    Craig B


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