"Gotcha" verses

Theo1689

Well-known member
Every so often a non-Calvinist starts a new thread by posting what they think is a "gotcha" verse, a verse that they think completely refutes Calvinism, and they expect the entire theology to come crashing down like a house of cards.

Here's what I think is happening... I think many non-Calvinists believe that Calvinism is a completely invented theology, separate from the Bible. I think they think we made up some artificial theology that we "want" to believe (are you kidding me?!), and once the theology was invented, then we went to the Bible to try to support it with a handful of "proof-texts".

What is really happening... I've shared my testimony on here before, and I guess I'm going to have to do it again. I was a very strong "free-willer" (I wasn't aware of the term, "Arminian" at the time) when I ran into my first Calvinist, in a "Mormonism" discussion forum of all places, and who just happened to be James White. And I was disgusted with his ideas of "predestination" and "election" and so forth, and we went at it tooth-and-nail. He turned me into an "anti-Calvinist". But I was still a Christian, and I loved God's word, and I continued to devour it daily. But I started to see the teachings of "Calvinism" on just about every page of the Bible that I read. I couldn't get rid of it. I tried to do what anti-Calvinists do, namely twist the Scriptures to try to get away from the plain meaning, but it kept happening over and over, I started feeling dishonest twisting God's word to try to make it say something other than what it actually said. I couldn't disrespect God by abusing His word in that way any more. I had to come to terms with the fact that the Bible clearly and undeniably taught the doctrines nicknamed "Calvinism". It was a hard pill to swallow. But I had a very strong testimony in God's word, and so I had to accept what it taught. And once I surrendered to God's teaching, it was a great weight had been lifted of my shoulders. And it caused me to appreciate God's holiness a million times more, and in turn caused me to realize my sins a million times more, and God's grace a million times more. God is TRULY amazing!


So Back to the "Gotcha!" Texts:

There have to be HUNDREDS of texts in the Bible supporting Calvinism, if not thousands (I haven't catalogued them all).

But a poster suddenly comes around and basically says, in not so many words,

"I know you must be completely ignorant of the Bible, and I'm going to show you a verse you've obviously never seen before, and when you read it, your eyes will be opened, and your mind will be blown away. You will suddenly see how false Calvinism is, because that's what I believe, because I have taken this verse and I have personally interpreted in a way so that I think it contradicts Calvinism, and I refuse to allow any interpretations other than what I have demanded it must mean."

Sorry, but I'm not impressed.

As I said, there are hundreds of supporting texts for Calvinism in the Bible. It is found on pretty much every page. And so the Bible has caused the building up of a very THICK plate of armour. And this "gotcha" text is like a tooth-pick projectile. It does no damage whatsoever.

Further, if I was to be swayed by this "proof-text" and change my beliefs, then I suddenly have HUNDREDS of proof-texts which are problematic for THAT view, which is what prevents me from going to your view in the first place.


Calvinists are NOT ignorant of the Bible.
If anything, they are more devoted to studying the Bible than non-Calvinists, both because they more greatly value the Bible, and because we tend to prefer "expository preaching" through the Bible, chapter by chapter, verse by verse, to "topical" preaching.

There are NO verses of the Bible that we are unaware of, both because of our own Bible study, because of the preaching in our churches, and because of the Biblical arguments our enemies present.

I'm not saying you shouldn't provide your "proof-texts", only that you be reasonable in your expectations, and not insultingly assume we are ignorant.
 

ReverendRV

Well-known member
I describe the age old debate like this; one Christian shows a verse saying the sky is blue, and another Christian shows a verse saying the sky is pink. The first Christian says 'What? The sky "IS" blue; the pink verse must be understood as feminine'. But later, the first Christian drives home at Dusk and sees the most beautiful pink sky. Then he realizes the sky will be black soon, and tomorrow it will be grey because it is going to rain all day. The first Christian now realizes the verse that says the sky is pink is true, true, true...

That's Compatibalism; we don't ignore any verse; we believe them all...
 
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Oldsaint24

Active member
Just curious, how do you explain the parable of the unforgiving servant (Matt. 18). Is the servant whom the master had pity on and forgave all his debt analogous to a forgiven child of God? I say yes. If you agree.....where is the unforgiving child of God being sent to?
 

Theo1689

Well-known member
Just curious, how do you explain the parable of the unforgiving servant (Matt. 18). Is the servant whom the master had pity on and forgave all his debt analogous to a forgiven child of God? I say yes. If you agree.....where is the unforgiving child of God being sent to?

I'm not sure how your question relates to the OP of this thread.
If you wish to discuss Matt. 18, you are free to start your own thread, instead of trying to hijack someone else's.
 

Oldsaint24

Active member
I'm not sure how your question relates to the OP of this thread.
If you wish to discuss Matt. 18, you are free to start your own thread, instead of trying to hijack someone else's.
The parable refutes Calvinism. Where is the totally forgiven but unforgiving being sent who had his debt restored being sent? And if he could not pay his debt in the first place how is he going to pay it while in prison?
 

Oldsaint24

Active member
Ok, just thought the title of the thread was sufficient for the question......and to refute the very subject of the thread......question, text....refutes Calvinist dogma.
 

Joe

Active member
In the short time that I've returned to the board after many years away, I can see there is very little discussion going on. I agree there a tactic of using gotcha verses, and no interest in learning why others think and believe differently. There is very little meaningful dialogue.
 

armylngst

Active member
The parable refutes Calvinism. Where is the totally forgiven but unforgiving being sent who had his debt restored being sent? And if he could not pay his debt in the first place how is he going to pay it while in prison?
This parable does not refute Calvinism. (not sure where you go that crazy idea from.) I guess you thought you had a "gotcha verse", huh? The whole basis for the parable is in Peter's question, and Jesus response. The idea is that we, as believers, are to have mercy on others, because God had mercy on us. As He has forgiven us, so we should forgive others. To not do so is a sin, and it stands between us and God in our relationship with Him, but does not sever said relationship. You will notice that two different punishments were mentioned. The first, the servant and his whole family, and everything he had were to be sold and the money given to the king. (So self and family sold into slavery, and all that was owned, sold off.) The second punishment was to be thrown into prison until the debt was paid. (Basically, the family would have to work extra hard.)
 

Oldsaint24

Active member
This parable does not refute Calvinism. (not sure where you go that crazy idea from.) I guess you thought you had a "gotcha verse", huh? The whole basis for the parable is in Peter's question, and Jesus response. The idea is that we, as believers, are to have mercy on others, because God had mercy on us. As He has forgiven us, so we should forgive others. To not do so is a sin, and it stands between us and God in our relationship with Him, but does not sever said relationship. You will notice that two different punishments were mentioned. The first, the servant and his whole family, and everything he had were to be sold and the money given to the king. (So self and family sold into slavery, and all that was owned, sold off.) The second punishment was to be thrown into prison until the debt was paid. (Basically, the family would have to work extra hard.)
First, the basis of the parable as you correctly point out is to and for children of God and not unregenerate children of men. As for the two separate punishments, the first is while living here on earth, yes, our families often pay for the sins of other family members; the second punishment is hell or prison for those who do not like the thought of going to hell. The parable most certainly refutes Calvinists perseverance of the saints.
 

armylngst

Active member
First, the basis of the parable as you correctly point out is to and for children of God and not unregenerate children of men. As for the two separate punishments, the first is while living here on earth, yes, our families often pay for the sins of other family members; the second punishment is hell or prison for those who do not like the thought of going to hell. The parable most certainly refutes Calvinists perseverance of the saints.
Wow, are you mansplaining a parable to God? That's incredible. I'm going to stay as far away from you as I can so as not to get caught in the back blast area. This has absolutely NOTHING to do with perseverance of the saints. Jude 24-25 does, and it claims that it is due to God's ability. Is there a reason why you believe God to be incapable, or to be more precise, that God is unfaithful?
 

Oldsaint24

Active member
Wow, are you mansplaining a parable to God? That's incredible. I'm going to stay as far away from you as I can so as not to get caught in the back blast area. This has absolutely NOTHING to do with perseverance of the saints. Jude 24-25 does, and it claims that it is due to God's ability. Is there a reason why you believe God to be incapable, or to be more precise, that God is unfaithful?
"mansplaining a parable to God?" What are you talking about? As for the Jude verses, they apply to obedient Spirit filled children of God, not disobedient, foolish, unforgiving, etc. children of God who do not have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. How 'bout the unfruitful children of God that the Father removes from the True Vine? The Father cuts them out, they wither and die and men gather them up and cast them into the fire. Did these persevere?
 

armylngst

Active member
"mansplaining a parable to God?" What are you talking about? As for the Jude verses, they apply to obedient Spirit filled children of God, not disobedient, foolish, unforgiving, etc. children of God who do not have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. How 'bout the unfruitful children of God that the Father removes from the True Vine? The Father cuts them out, they wither and die and men gather them up and cast them into the fire. Did these persevere?
Why do you believe they are children? How about the parable of the wheat and the tares? Did the master say not to cut down any because some of the tares might become wheat, or the wheat might become tares? No. If you look at it next to life, it is that new young believers do not appear that different from the world until they mature. The master was saying, before mistakes are made, let the field mature where one can clearly see the distinction between wheat and tares. Nothing about wheat becoming tares or tares becoming wheat. What was sown remained to be reaped, and if tares, burnt in fire, if wheat, gathered into the barns. The Bible also speaks of sheep and goats. The sheep are the saved, and the goats are not. No where does it say that the goats become sheep, or the sheep become goats. In fact, there are two different types of sheep. The lost/stray, and the found. Jesus doesn't go looking for goats to make into sheep, He looks for the sheep of His fold, those the Father has given unto Him. If you do not have the Spirit, you are not truly a child of God, and never were. Obviously salvation changes that, but that is how it is.
Jude 24-25 is for all believers.
 

Oldsaint24

Active member
Why do you believe they are children? How about the parable of the wheat and the tares? Did the master say not to cut down any because some of the tares might become wheat, or the wheat might become tares? No. If you look at it next to life, it is that new young believers do not appear that different from the world until they mature. The master was saying, before mistakes are made, let the field mature where one can clearly see the distinction between wheat and tares. Nothing about wheat becoming tares or tares becoming wheat. What was sown remained to be reaped, and if tares, burnt in fire, if wheat, gathered into the barns. The Bible also speaks of sheep and goats. The sheep are the saved, and the goats are not. No where does it say that the goats become sheep, or the sheep become goats. In fact, there are two different types of sheep. The lost/stray, and the found. Jesus doesn't go looking for goats to make into sheep, He looks for the sheep of His fold, those the Father has given unto Him. If you do not have the Spirit, you are not truly a child of God, and never were. Obviously salvation changes that, but that is how it is.
Jude 24-25 is for all believers.
I say they are children (of God) because Jude tells us he is writing to "them that are sanctified by God the Father and preserved in Christ..." also the writer contrasts the readers to those "...having not the Spirit." the readers obviously do... and identifying them as those "praying in the Holy Ghost."
Many children of God do not have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Children abiding in the True Vine have the Holy Spirit. Children that love Jesus and keep His commandments have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Disobedient, foolish, non-overcoming, unforgiving lawless, etc. children of God do not have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. When these children of God die......they will be weep and gnashing their teeth. At least that is what Jesus tells us.
 

armylngst

Active member
I say they are children (of God) because Jude tells us he is writing to "them that are sanctified by God the Father and preserved in Christ..." also the writer contrasts the readers to those "...having not the Spirit." the readers obviously do... and identifying them as those "praying in the Holy Ghost."
Many children of God do not have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Children abiding in the True Vine have the Holy Spirit. Children that love Jesus and keep His commandments have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Disobedient, foolish, non-overcoming, unforgiving lawless, etc. children of God do not have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. When these children of God die......they will be weep and gnashing their teeth.
There is so much you apparently don't understand about salvation, and I don't know that much. This I do know. Paul was quite clear. His Spirit (Holy Spirit) testifies with our spirit (His Spirit has to be indwelling for that to happen) that we are children of God. So you don't have children of God without the spirit. So I am not sure where you get your understanding of children of God from, but it doesn't mean what you think it means. Even Paul marks salvation by the sealing of the Holy Spirit. That is the Holy Spirit dwelling within the believer. (Ephesians 1:13). "13 In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit," Children of God has been used to represent His chosen people, that is Israel, whether saved/believers, or not saved/nonbelievers, but that is not the same as what you are stating.

Also, are you a legalist? I mean, you sound like a legalist. So are you a legalist? As you said -"...keep His commandments have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit." I mean, there is sanctification, but that doesn't determine whether one has the Holy Spirit, or if one is going to heaven.

Those who have known the grace, the mercy, and the blessing of God, and have known of His truth, and the truth of His glory, will be cast into the outer darkness where they will be weeping and gnashing of their teeth, because having known all of this, they failed to believe in His Son. They know exactly what they missed. Their torment will be great.
 

Oldsaint24

Active member
Also, are you a legalist? I mean, you sound like a legalist. So are you a legalist? As you said -"...keep His commandments have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit." I mean, there is sanctification, but that doesn't determine whether one has the Holy Spirit, or if one is going to heaven.
I think this will address much of what you wrote. No, I am not a legalist as most children of God speak about legalism. I was simply quoting what Jesus taught about how the child of God receives the promise of the Holy Spirit. In John 14 Jesus is teaching His disciples and future children of God how to receive the promise of the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit. "If you love me keep my commandments and......" v15 and "he that has my commandments and keeps them......". v21. And please notice that the next chapter 15 Jesus, the True Vine, makes clear that not all children of God abide in Him.
 

armylngst

Active member
I think this will address much of what you wrote. No, I am not a legalist as most children of God speak about legalism. I was simply quoting what Jesus taught about how the child of God receives the promise of the Holy Spirit. In John 14 Jesus is teaching His disciples and future children of God how to receive the promise of the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit. "If you love me keep my commandments and......" v15 and "he that has my commandments and keeps them......". v21. And please notice that the next chapter 15 Jesus, the True Vine, makes clear that not all children of God abide in Him.
Your understanding is way to simplistic then. It is much more complicated then that. Perhaps that is why as Christians mature in faith, they start becoming calvinistic? They come to understand what the Bible is saying. I see Armianism/calvinism to be views of scripture according to the big picture. It isn't the gospel, but a way of understanding scripture. No one should ever be going to someone with the gospel simply because they believe that God has chosen them. I mean, then most Christians would spend their time in Hollywood with their favorite celebrity. TULIP explains man's condition, God's position in Creation, salvation, and God's part in salvation. (among other things). Reading just two verses of Calvin's commentary on Ephesians was an eye opening experience. It contradicts what non-calvinists say that calvinists believe, proving that non-calvinists don't have a clue what they are talking about.
 

Oldsaint24

Active member
Your understanding is way to simplistic then. It is much more complicated then that. Perhaps that is why as Christians mature in faith, they start becoming calvinistic? They come to understand what the Bible is saying. I see Armianism/calvinism to be views of scripture according to the big picture. It isn't the gospel, but a way of understanding scripture. No one should ever be going to someone with the gospel simply because they believe that God has chosen them. I mean, then most Christians would spend their time in Hollywood with their favorite celebrity. TULIP explains man's condition, God's position in Creation, salvation, and God's part in salvation. (among other things). Reading just two verses of Calvin's commentary on Ephesians was an eye opening experience. It contradicts what non-calvinists say that calvinists believe, proving that non-calvinists don't have a clue what they are talking about.
So, are you saying that loving Jesus more than ones self and KEEPING His commandments is ....not.....the way the children of God receive the promise of the Holy Spirit?
 

Buzzard

Active member
Is.1:1
The vision of Isaiah the son of Amoz,
which he saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem
in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah,
kings of Judah.

2 Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth:
for the Lord hath spoken
I have nourished and brought up children,
and they have rebelled against me.

3 The ox knoweth his owner,
and the ass his master's crib:
but Israel doth not know,
(and)
my people doth not consider.
:unsure:

Is.4:1
And in that day seven (7) women shall take hold of one man,
saying, We will eat our own bread,
and wear our own apparel:
only let us be called by thy name,
to take away our reproach.
 

Redeemed

Well-known member
Just curious, how do you explain the parable of the unforgiving servant (Matt. 18). Is the servant whom the master had pity on and forgave all his debt analogous to a forgiven child of God? I say yes. If you agree.....where is the unforgiving child of God being sent to?
That's an easy one, why he's sent to where the skies not blue.:giggle:
 
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