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Friday, March 18, 2011

The Differences: Semi-Pelagianism, Rome, Orthodoxy, Arminianism, and Calvinism

As seen from the Theologica Forums.


Thanks, I hope he doesn't mind if I interact with it. I agree with what he said about the first one (Pelagianism). I disagree slightly with the second. And it goes back to what I said previously.

Quote:

Semi-Pelagianism

All people are in the water drowning. They are born drowning. This is the natural habitation of all humanity since the first man and woman jumped into the water. Their legs are cramping and they cannot swim to safety on their own. However, they may desire salvation on their own. Though they cannot attain it, they can call, with a wave of their arm, to God who is eagerly waiting on the edge of the boat. At the first sign of their initiative, God will then throw out the life preserver (grace). If they respond, they will be saved (synergism)."

What I underlined is where the common flaw is. If he said "However, some may desire salvation on their own. Though they cannot attain it, they can call, with a wave of their arm, to God who is eagerly waiting on the edge of the boat. At the first sign of their initiative."

If he said it like that then it would of been extremely accurate. If we paint the picture that everyone was able to take the first initiative. Then we distort their view. Saint John Cassian gave the example of the thief on the Cross that was able to take the first initiative, he also said some things about prayer in regards to King David and the first initiative. But he gave other examples of people in Scripture of where that wasn't the case. In his other examples he shows how God took the first initiative. And when we look at what he had to say elsewhere in the infamous 13th constitution/conference we see that he makes use of Augustine's idea of God taking the first initiative. As seen from the Conferences:


Quote:
"From which we clearly infer that the initiative not only of our actions but also of good thoughts comes from God, who inspires us with a good will to begin with, and supplies us with the opportunity of carrying out what we rightly desire: for "every good gift and every perfect gift cometh down from above, from the Father of lights,"

But he didn't see that as being the case for all people. When we look at Canon 8 of the local western council of 2nd Orange we see this:

Quote:

CANON 8. If anyone maintains that some are able to come to the grace of baptism by mercy but others through free will, which has manifestly been corrupted in all those who have been born after the transgression of the first man, it is proof that he has no place in the true faith. For he denies that the free will of all men has been weakened through the sin of the first man, or at least holds that it has been affected in such a way that they have still the ability to seek the mystery of eternal salvation by themselves without the revelation of God. The Lord himself shows how contradictory this is by declaring that no one is able to come to him "unless the Father who sent me draws him" (John 6:44), as he also says to Peter, "Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jona! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven" (Matt. 16:17), and as the Apostle says, "No one can say 'Jesus is Lord' except by the Holy Spirit" (1 Cor. 12:3)."

The Canons of 2nd Orange often attack Saint John Cassian and what he said in various places in the Constitutions/Conferences. But they also rejected double Predestination and they advocated a doctrine of Synergy after Regeneration. As seen from 2nd Orange:

Quote:
"CANON 13. Concerning the restoration of free will. The freedom of will that was destroyed in the first man can be restored only by the grace of baptism, for what is lost can be returned only by the one who was able to give it. Hence the Truth itself declares: "So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed" (John 8:36).


As well as in the conclusion:
Quote:
"According to the catholic faith we also believe that after grace has been received through baptism, all baptized persons have the ability and responsibility, if they desire to labor faithfully, to perform with the aid and cooperation of Christ what is of essential importance in regard to the salvation of their soul."


And so they brought Free Will back (which is something the Reformed don't do). This is why 2nd Orange is called moderate Augustinianism. Or what I sometimes call Semi-Augustinian.

(going back to read what he said about Rome and EO)

Ok, I slightly disagree with what he said about us.

Quote:
Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy

All people are in the water drowning. They are born drowning. This is the natural habitation of all humanity since the first man and woman jumped into the water. Their legs are cramping and they cannot swim to safety on their own. God, standing on the edge of the boat, makes the first initiative by throwing a life preserver to them (prevenient grace). Upon seeing this act, they make a decision to grab a hold (faith) or to swim away. If they grab a hold, God will slowly pull the rope connected to the life preserver. But they must do their part by swimming along with God’s pull (grace plus works; synergism). If at any time they let go or quit swimming, they will not be saved.

1.) We don't see anything wrong with visible things or the physical world in general being used as a means of grace. And so what maybe seen as works to some Protestants is seen as Grace to us.

2.) Salvation in both Rome and Orthodoxy is dynamic(I was saved, am being saved, and will be saved). It is not a one time event and so when looking at how we see things one must not only look at what happens before Water Baptism(Regeneration), but also after as well, all the way to our very last breath. For that is when the race is over.

3.) From what I know about Rome, they not only believe in the Augustinian doctrine of Total inability, but they also believe Grace(I'm ignoring the issue of created grace vs uncreated grace) to precede every human animation, and so it would be inaccurate to say grace plus works. As seen from 2nd Orange, we know that the Christian West eventually advocated the view that free will was restored and Rome believes in grace infused works or works prompted by grace. It's a very Augustinian idea. Also, when looking at Rome, you have to be careful for She has multiple schools of thought when it comes to the issue of Grace and Free Will. And so you would have to look at the various schools of thought within Rome. That's if one wants to be as accurate as possible.

a.) Augustinian school of thought

b.) Thomistic school of thought

c.) Congruent school of thought

d.) Molinistic school of thought

4.) Orthodox Christianity doesn't like to use the term Prevenient grace, even though we made use of the Latin term in the 17th century. We don't believe in different species of Grace. And so the differences is in regards to each individuals depth in the Grace of God. We believe God's Grace to not only be everywhere, but we also believe it permeates all things. There is no place in where God's Grace is not. And so there is no place our wills can exist in where His Grace is not already present. And so when we make use of the latin term "Prevenient", it has to be looked at within this context. And so our understanding of Synergy is one of simultaneous co-operation.

Acts chapter 17:27-28 "so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; 28 for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring."

However, in every day speech it is difficult to communicate in a way that would express simultaneity.

(Going back to read what he had to say about Arminianism)


Quote: Arminianism
All people are floating in the water dead in their natural condition (total depravity). They are born dead because that has been the condition of humanity since the first man and woman jumped into the water and died (original sin). Death begets death. There must be intervention if they are to be saved. God uses his power to bring every one of them back to life (prevenient grace), but they are still in the water and in danger of drowning. With the regenerated ability to respond to God, now God throws the life preserver to them and calls on them all to grab hold of it. They then make the free-will decision on their own to grab a hold of the life preserver (faith) or to swim away. If they grab a hold, they must continue to hold as God pulls them in (synergism). They don’t need to do anything but hold on. Any effort to swim and aid God is superfluous (sola fide). They can let go of the preserver at any time and, as a consequence, lose their salvation.



Ok, I slightly disagree in some areas. There are different forms of Arminianism and so I would just say that for most Classical Arminians, especially the modern free will Baptists. One can loose their salvation if they loose faith. Other Classical Arminians believe in a form of Once Saved Always Saved. James Arminius himself was unsure about the issue.

For the Wesleyan and Charles G. Finny Holiness Arminians one can loose their salvation not only by a lose of faith, but also by bad fruit as well. There is a Justification through Sanctification within these schools of Arminian thought. Other than that I'm pretty much in agreement with what he said up above.


(Going back to read what he had to say about Calvinism)

Quote: Calvinism
All people are floating in the water dead in their natural condition (total depravity). They are born dead because that has been the condition of humanity since the first man and woman jumped into the water and died (original sin). Death begets death. There must be radical intervention if they are to be saved. While God calls out to all of them (general call), due to his mysterious choice, he brings back to life (regeneration) only certain people (election) while passing by the rest (reprobation). He does not use a life preserver, but grabs a hold of the elect individually and immediately pulls them onto the boat (monergism). They naturally grab a hold of God as a consequence of their regeneration (irresistible grace; sola fide). They forever stay on the boat due to their perpetual ability to recognize God’s beauty (perseverance of the saints)."

One Question. I could be wrong, but I thought some Calvinists believe in an active reprobation? Especially the High Calvinists? Other than that I pretty much agree with what he said up above. Well wait, he should of added C.P.R. along with individually pulling a select number of individuals out. That way, after the C.P.R. they would be able to naturally respond back.


Dave Z said:

CMP offers definitions and illustrations here.

25 comments:

Drake Shelton said...

So then post lapse man applies himself to salvation and God comes afterwards to help him continue on the path of salvation. So then natural post lapse man of himself pleases God and spurs God to help him in contuing on the path of salvation. I have one verse for you: Rom 8: 7because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, 8 and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

You say,
"Quote:
"From which we clearly infer that the initiative not only of our actions but also of good thoughts comes from God, who inspires us with a good will to begin with, and supplies us with the opportunity of carrying out what we rightly desire: for "every good gift and every perfect gift cometh down from above, from the Father of lights,"

But he didn't see that as being the case for all people. When we look at Canon 8 of the local western council of 2nd Orange we see this:"

If it isn't the case for all people then you must exclude the freedom of the will from the essential predications of human nature.

"The Canons of 2nd Orange often attack Saint John Cassian and what he said in various places in the Constitutions/Conferences. But they also rejected double Predestination and they advocated a doctrine of Synergy after Regeneration. As seen from 2nd Orange:"

What does post regenerate man have to do with the context of the Calvinism-Orthodoxy debate?

"And so they brought Free Will back (which is something the Reformed don't do)."

This is an assertion. Show me the quotation from the westminster confession or some other major reformed writer that says this. If you are saying that post redemption man can't lose his salvation on the reformed view then in that sense no we don't believe that man has the freedom that is the external object of full apostasy to choose from. That doesn't infer that he has no plurality of external objects to choose from though. He can go either sin or good post redemption.


"1.) We don't see anything wrong with visible things or the physical world in general being used as a means of grace. And so what maybe seen as works to some Protestants is seen as Grace to us."

Can you show where Calvinistic soteriology posits that there is something morally wrong with the physical world? If by this you mean that "matter" is God bearing: 1. What is matter? 2. What does it mean for matter to bear God? Is this not a union of nature to nature? Related to relics and icons, doesn't that posit a Eutychian view of Christology? [Nature to nature union, ergo a Christic nature/theanthropic nature]

"2.) Salvation in both Rome and Orthodoxy is dynamic(I was saved, am being saved, and will be saved). It is not a one time event and so when looking at how we see things one must not only look at what happens before Water Baptism(Regeneration), but also after as well, all the way to our very last breath. For that is when the race is over."

This is a straw man. We see salvation as having three parts justification sanctification and glorification. Justification is a one time thing sanctification is a process and glorification is in the future and so we can say the same thing, I was saved (justified) am being saved (sanctified) and will be saved (glorfied).

Drake Shelton said...

"Also, when looking at Rome, you have to be careful for She has multiple schools of thought when it comes to the issue of Grace and Free Will."

As do you. John of Damascus holds a different view of energy than Palamas if I am not mistaken and synergy has multiple defintions as you have proved from your own statements here.

"it has to be looked at within this context. And so our understanding of Synergy is one of simultaneous co-operation"

But earlier you had the man applying himself first and then God reciprocates.

"However, in every day speech it is difficult to communicate in a way that would express simultaneity."

If you cannot define your terms you do not have truth. Truth is propositional and if you do not have the proposition you do not have a position. Just like I thought. This is why farrell doesn't deal with the issue in his book isn't it? The East doesn't even have a theory of post lapse man's internal ability does it?

"One Question. I could be wrong, but I thought some Calvinists believe in an active reprobation? Especially the High Calvinists"

Never read one myself. The WCF 3.VII. The rest of mankind, God was pleased, according to the unsearchable counsel of his own will, whereby he extendeth or withholdeth mercy as he pleaseth, for the glory of his sovereign power over his creatures, TO PASS BY, and to ordain them to dishonor and wrath for their sin, to the praise of his glorious justice.

To the arbitrariness objection of Dabid P a while ago I offer this quote by Girardeau,

I am reading John L Girardeau’s Calvinism and Evangelical Arminianism. I found this quote quite devstating to the Arminian and Eastern objection against arbitrariness, responsibility and God’s justice:

"The Calvinist says, God finds men already disobedient and condemned, and leaves some of them in the condition of disobedience and condemnation to which by their own avoidable act they had reduced themselves. The Arminian represents the Calvinist as saying, God decrees to reject some of mankind from eternal salvation, and their disobedience follows as a necessary consequence. That is to say, if the language mean anything, God’s decree of reprobation causes the disobedience of some men, and then dooms them to eternal punishment for that disobedience. But who would deny that to be unjust." pg. 186.

This is precisely the argument that I have read from the best Arminian and Eastern Orthodox apologists. This answers their objection from arbitrariness and responsibility.

Drake Shelton said...

So then post lapse man applies himself to salvation and God comes afterwards to help him continue on the path of salvation. So then natural post lapse man of himself pleases God and spurs God to help him in contuing on the path of salvation. I have one verse for you: Rom 8: 7because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, 8 and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

You say,
"Quote:
"From which we clearly infer that the initiative not only of our actions but also of good thoughts comes from God, who inspires us with a good will to begin with, and supplies us with the opportunity of carrying out what we rightly desire: for "every good gift and every perfect gift cometh down from above, from the Father of lights,"

But he didn't see that as being the case for all people. When we look at Canon 8 of the local western council of 2nd Orange we see this:"

If it isn't the case for all people then you must exclude the freedom of the will from the essential predications of human nature.

"The Canons of 2nd Orange often attack Saint John Cassian and what he said in various places in the Constitutions/Conferences. But they also rejected double Predestination and they advocated a doctrine of Synergy after Regeneration. As seen from 2nd Orange:"

What does post regenerate man have to do with the context of the Calvinism-Orthodoxy debate?

"And so they brought Free Will back (which is something the Reformed don't do)."

This is an assertion. Show me the quotation from the westminster confession or some other major reformed writer that says this. If you are saying that post redemption man can't lose his salvation on the reformed view then in that sense no we don't believe that man has the freedom that is the external object of full apostasy to choose from. That doesn't infer that he has no plurality of external objects to choose from though. He can go either sin or good post redemption.


"1.) We don't see anything wrong with visible things or the physical world in general being used as a means of grace. And so what maybe seen as works to some Protestants is seen as Grace to us."

Can you show where Calvinistic soteriology posits that there is something morally wrong with the physical world? If by this you mean that "matter" is God bearing: 1. What is matter? 2. What does it mean for matter to bear God? Is this not a union of nature to nature? Related to relics and icons, doesn't that posit a Eutychian view of Christology? [Nature to nature union, ergo a Christic nature/theanthropic nature]

"2.) Salvation in both Rome and Orthodoxy is dynamic(I was saved, am being saved, and will be saved). It is not a one time event and so when looking at how we see things one must not only look at what happens before Water Baptism(Regeneration), but also after as well, all the way to our very last breath. For that is when the race is over."

This is a straw man. We see salvation as having three parts justification sanctification and glorification. Justification is a one time thing sanctification is a process and glorification is in the future and so we can say the same thing, I was saved (justified) am being saved (sanctified) and will be saved (glorfied).

Jnorm said...

Drake,

When I said that the Reformed don't bring free will back, what I meant was that they leave man stuck in either hard or soft determinism.

You see, you guys believe:

1.) Man had free will before the fall.

2.) Free will was lost/destroyed at the fall. This is where determinism comes in. The idea that one can only choose according to their nature. And the whole idea of a sin nature in general. According to this view, man can only choose evil. Or he could only choose to sin.

3.) Regeneration (in 2nd Orange they bring free will back. What was lost is now restored) The problem with the reformed view is that they never bring free will back. The Reformed tradition keeps Regenerated people stuck in either Hard Determinism or Soft Determinism (what some call Compatibilism).

If I sounded mean or rude by saying this please let me know. Sometimes I can't tell. It is not my intent to be mean, but sometimes it hard to control my emotions when typing.


Drake said:
"Can you show where Calvinistic soteriology posits that there is something morally wrong with the physical world?"

I mostly have in mind Baptists and nondenominationals that have a Baptist ethos. There are a number of Reformed Baptist that seem to have a hard time with water Baptism as being a means of grace and so they call it works righteousness. Some may also have a hard time with the Eucharist as well.



Drake said:
"If by this you mean that "matter" is God bearing: 1. What is matter? 2. What does it mean for matter to bear God? Is this not a union of nature to nature? Related to relics and icons, doesn't that posit a Eutychian view of Christology? [Nature to nature union, ergo a Christic nature/theanthropic nature]"


What we believe about water Baptism and the Eucharist predates the Eutychian and Chalcedonian conflict. Water Baptism as being a means of grace is seen by Rome and Lutherans as well......it's not just us, and it's not just the Oriental Orthodox. Water Baptism as being a means of grace should be embraced by all Christians.



Drake said:
"This is a straw man. We see salvation as having three parts justification sanctification and glorification. Justification is a one time thing sanctification is a process and glorification is in the future and so we can say the same thing, I was saved (justified) am being saved (sanctified) and will be saved (glorfied)."

Are you sure you guys put Sanctification in the Salvation category? If you can't loose your salvation then how can you put Sanctification in the Salvation category? I understand why Wesleyan Arminians believe in Justification through Sanctification, but I thought the Reformed tradition rejects that idea.

Jnorm said...

Drake said:
"But earlier you had the man applying himself first and then God reciprocates."


I was quoting Saint John Cassian.


Drake said:
"If it isn't the case for all people then you must exclude the freedom of the will from the essential predications of human nature."


In quoting 2nd Orange, I was looking at the response of the moderate/semi- Augustinians.



Drake said:
"If you cannot define your terms you do not have truth. Truth is propositional and if you do not have the proposition you do not have a position. Just like I thought. This is why farrell doesn't deal with the issue in his book isn't it? The East doesn't even have a theory of post lapse man's internal ability does it?"

Our view of the fall isn't as drastic as Saint Augustine's. But, with that said. I personally find myself agreeing with what Saint Augustine said in his middle years in this regard. Let me find it.

Quote:
Quote:"it surely follows that it is God who both works in man the willing to believe, and in all things prevents us with His mercy. To yield our consent, indeed, to God's summons, or to withhold it, is (as I have said) the function of our own will. And this not only does not invalidate what is said, "For what do you have that you did not receive?" 1 Corinthians 4:7 but it really confirms it. For the soul cannot receive and possess these gifts, which are here referred to, except by yielding its consent."

On the Spirit and the Letter Chapter 57 (around the year 412 A.D.)
http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/1502.htm


At least in his middle years he believed in a measure of free will. We see his determinism beginning around the year 396 A.D. and it pretty much fully takes over in his later years. Well, I shouldn't say fully takes over, but we do see a hardening in that direction in his older years.



Drake said:
"Never read one myself. The WCF 3.VII. The rest of mankind, God was pleased, according to the unsearchable counsel of his own will, whereby he extendeth or withholdeth mercy as he pleaseth, for the glory of his sovereign power over his creatures, TO PASS BY, and to ordain them to dishonor and wrath for their sin, to the praise of his glorious justice."

I ran into a few

Jnorm said...

Drake said:
This is precisely the argument that I have read from the best Arminian and Eastern Orthodox apologists. This answers their objection from arbitrariness and responsibility."

Are you an Infra or a Supra? My answer will depend on how you answer this.

Drake Shelton said...

"1.) Man had free will before the fall."

This is not the essential element to man's will; that is his ability to will spiritual good. Man's spontineity is the essential element. The ability to choose spiritual good can be lost without the loss of human nature. In neither case post nor pre lapse can man's will be forced.
"If I sounded mean or rude by saying this please let me know. Sometimes I can't tell. It is not my intent to be mean, but sometimes it hard to control my emotions when typing."

I don't think I have ever read anything you have said that came across mean or rude. I think you are possibly the easiest person I know to debate with and quite frankly I respect you greatly and am constantly built up, challenged and edified by our debates. I get really upset when you argue against Calvinism from straw men and propaganda that you probably got from Perry or Jay Dyer, but it's nothing personal.

"I mostly have in mind Baptists and nondenominationals that have a Baptist ethos. There are a number of Reformed Baptist that seem to have a hard time with water Baptism as being a means of grace and so they call it works righteousness. Some may also have a hard time with the Eucharist as well."

Agreed.

"3.) Regeneration (in 2nd Orange they bring free will back. What was lost is now restored) The problem with the reformed view is that they never bring free will back. The Reformed tradition keeps Regenerated people stuck in either Hard Determinism or Soft Determinism (what some call Compatibilism)."

Girardeau, Calvinism and Evangelical Arminianism,pg. 406
"As then effecacious grace. the fruit of election, RESTORES TO HIM THE LIBERTY TO WILL HOLINESS, SO FAR FROM BEING INCONSISTENT WITH THAT LIBERTY, IT IS PROVED TO BE ITS ONLY CAUSE."

"What we believe about water Baptism and the Eucharist predates the Eutychian and Chalcedonian conflict. Water Baptism as being a means of grace is seen by Rome and Lutherans as well......it's not just us, and it's not just the Oriental Orthodox. Water Baptism as being a means of grace should be embraced by all Christians."

Ok sacramental union is different than hypostatic. I am perfectly fine with a sacramental union of God to a sacramental emblem. What I cannot believe is that he is hypostatically united to the bread and wine. See this is eye opening for me. You guys use christological arguments for icons when really you should be using sacramental arguments or at least saying that is is sacramental.

Drake Shelton said...

"Are you sure you guys put Sanctification in the Salvation category? If you can't loose your salvation then how can you put Sanctification in the Salvation category? I understand why Wesleyan Arminians believe in Justification through Sanctification, but I thought the Reformed tradition rejects that idea."

WCF 8.1
"I. It pleased God, in his eternal purpose, to choose and ordain the Lord Jesus, his only-begotten Son, to be the Mediator between God and men, the prophet, priest, and king; the head and Savior of the Church, the heir or all things, and judge of the world; unto whom he did, from all eternity, give a people to be his seed, and to be by him in time redeemed, called, justified, sanctified, and glorified."

WCF 14. II. By this faith, a Christian believeth to be true whatsoever is revealed in the Word, for the authority of god himself speaking therein; and acteth differently, upon that which each particular passage thereof containeth; yielding obedience to the commands, trembling at the threatenings, and embracing the promises of God for this life, and that which is to come. But the principle acts of saving faith are, accepting, receiving, and resting upon Christ alone for justification, sanctification, and eternal life, by virtue of the covenant of grace.

Robert Shaw commenting on WCF 14. 2 says,

"5. That the true believer receives and rests upon Christ for a complete salvation. He trusts in Christ for salvation not only from wrath, but also from sin–not only for salvation from the guilt of sin, but also from its pollution and power–not only for happiness hereafter, but also for holiness here. In the language of the Confession, he rests upon Christ "for justification, sanctification, and eternal life;" and that "by virtue of the covenant of grace;" that is, as these blessings are exhibited and secured in that covenant."

"Drake said:
"But earlier you had the man applying himself first and then God reciprocates."

I was quoting Saint John Cassian"
So is he right or wrong? Which agent acts first?

"In quoting 2nd Orange, I was looking at the response of the moderate/semi- Augustinians."

So then are you saying that ALL people do have the ability to apply themselves to salvation and santified works or NO people?

"Quote:
Quote:"it surely follows that it is God who both works in man the willing to believe, and in all things prevents us with His mercy. To yield our consent, indeed, to God's summons, or to withhold it, is (as I have said) the function of our own will. And this not only does not invalidate what is said, "For what do you have that you did not receive?" 1 Corinthians 4:7 but it really confirms it. For the soul cannot receive and possess these gifts, which are here referred to, except by yielding its consent."

On the Spirit and the Letter Chapter 57 (around the year 412 A.D.)
http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/1502.htm"

As I showed earlier the WCF clearly says that man is not forced in the effectual call. I think we have common ground here.

"Are you an Infra or a Supra? My answer will depend on how you answer this."

Well, Robert Reymond entered into a Five Views essays debate where he construicted a supra construction that eliminated any arbitrariness on God's part yet placed the logical order of decrees begining with election and reprobation before the fall. It is unlike any infra or supra construction previously constructed. The book is called 5 Views Perspectivs on Election. I hold to his view and IMO he has solved the huge debate that has been festering in Calvinism for centuries. You can read his essay here: http://books.google.com/books?id=QM6f2m053bUC&printsec=frontcover&dq=five+views+on+election&hl=en&ei=wYyFTdv0KIGDgAfKmq2uDA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CCwQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false

Drake Shelton said...

From this quote I gave:

Girardeau, Calvinism and Evangelical Arminianism,pg. 406
"As then effecacious grace. the fruit of election, RESTORES TO HIM THE LIBERTY TO WILL HOLINESS, SO FAR FROM BEING INCONSISTENT WITH THAT LIBERTY, IT IS PROVED TO BE ITS ONLY CAUSE."


Now remember Jay Dyer's criticism:

"Monergism, the Calvinistic view, presupposing its Pelagian view of pre-lapsarian mandenies the possibility of anything fallen retaining a naturalwill, with its own natural energy. In thier view, the fall has erased the freedom of the will, and so it follows Christ cannot have a free human will, since He is supposed to be consubstantial with us. It must also then, deny that will is a property of nature, if Christ assumed our corruption (1 Cor. 15:35-57), whilst it denies that Christ had a fully human will. It’s one or the other: our view is orthodox: their view leads to the error of mon – energism, that in Christ there is only one will, the overpowering divine will. In this view, grace must replace nature, the human will is replaced by the divinewill. This makes sense, given their view of the fall. In conversion, there can be no natural human will raised effectually to the divine life, but a dead will, replaced by the divine will. Grace replaces nature. The Incarnational theology Chalcedon refused such a confusion of the divine with the human. Grace raises nature, and never replaces or destroys it. This is why synergism is always true, though God can effectualy move free will."

http://jaysanalysis.com/2010/05/02/monergism-one-energy-monothelitism/

Girardeau is clear. Man's natural will is retained but it only has the power to will sin and natural good not Spiritual good. The fall did not erase the will but disabled it. Grace is not replacing nature but giving the liberty to the same natural will to choose holiness. Effecacious grace then raises nature in Girardeau. Jay is dead wrong and never read any theological manuals that comment on the WCF.

Lvka said...

Man takes the "first" step in the context of an *already existent* and *God-given* conscience, plus *revelation* (if we're Christians or Jews)... so it's not good to take words or phrases [like 'the first step', etc] out of context.

Lvka said...

We did not create ourselves, nor did we create our conscience, nor did we "deduce" revelation (they were all given to us by God: life, existence, reason, conscience, and revelation). It's God that waits to see what we do "next", with the `talents` that He gave us *first*..

Jnorm said...

Drake Shelton,

What do you do with the Reformed that tell me that man is passive in the area of Justification? I think this is what Jay Dyer is getting at.

Drake Shelton said...

Jnorm said-"What do you do with the Reformed that tell me that man is passive in the area of Justification? I think this is what Jay Dyer is getting at."

Effectual calling is also passive.See WCF 10.2
10. 2
This effectual call is of God's free and special grace alone, not from any thing at all foreseen in man, who is altogether passive therein, until, being quickened and renewed by the Holy Spirit, he is thereby enabled to answer this call, and to embrace the grace offered and conveyed in it.

Not sure what u are getting at. Here in effectual call effecacious grace renews free will (ability to choose spiritual good) in the passive agent.

WCF 11.1
I. Those whom God effectually calleth, he also freely justifieth: not by infusing righteousness into them, but by pardoning their sins, and by accounting and accepting their persons as righteous; not for any thing wrought in them, or done by them, but for Christ's sake alone; not by imputing faith itself, the act of believing, or any other evangelical obedience to them, as their righteousness; but by imputing the obedience and satisfaction of Christ unto them, they receiving and resting on him and his righteousness by faith; which faith they have not of themselves, it is the gift of God.

Here in effectual call man is passive and is united to christ, the will is now free to choose spiriutal good and the basis of justification is laid, namely union with christ. Subsequently man man now uses his free will and performs the act of faith an act of free volition. God's justification is not arbitrary or baseless. The justification is proclaimed as God sees the elect sinner united to christ.

Drake Shelton said...

Lvka

How is your view of the salvific calling different than the pelagian?

Not clear how you are using the word revelation.

Jnorm said...

Drake,

In the book "Free Choice in Saint Maximus the Confessor", you will see that the Monothelites/Monoenergists thought that the human will of Christ was passive. This is why Perry, and Jay Dyer all said what they were saying. It's not that they are half read. Like you, they tend to read alot. They made the connection that Monoenergism (in the Christological debates) is similar to the Augustinian Monergy. Now I am one who believes that not all forms of Monergy is bad, for some schools of thought within Rome turns Monergy into Synergy. But Monergy can imply determinism.......just like Monoenergism/Monothelitism.


Drake,

What is the difference between what you quoted up above in regards to us being passive and that of Pyrrhus in his conversation with Saint Maximus? What's the difference?

The conversation I am talking about is in the book "Free Choice in Saint Maximus the Confessor".



Hmm, I might have to define what I mean by determinism. For Free Will and Determinism aren't the same thing. I might quote a book on it sometime in the near future.....probably tonight or tomorrow morning.

Drake Shelton said...

Give me a day or two on that request Jnorm on how effectual calling and the passive thing relate. . I am compiling my notes from reading that book and I need to write something on this to organize my thoughts before I continue.

PS I reject that jay ever embraced anything close to reformed. He was in some Quasi anabaptist group and if you notice he never actually quotes reformed authors in his polemics as I notice you don't do much either. He gathers some infered consequence from what he wants them to mean and then makes his living off clever straw men.

Jnorm said...

Drake,

You are a different kind of Calvinist. Back when I dated a woman who was PCA, her group over in Montgomery, Al were deeply into Jay Adams, and some other guys. The high Calvinists I mostly know now (online) are into:

1.) Gordan Clark
2.) Jay Adams
3.) R.C. Sproul Jr
4.) Vincent Cheung

Some others that I know online are into:
1.) R.C. Sproul
2.) John Macauthor
3.) John Piper
4.) Horton (the white horse inn)
5.) and a hand full of others

You seem to be different. You talk alot about Scottish Presbyterianism. I never ran into a Calvinist like that before. Also the Calvinists I know either believe in Monergy all the way through......Justification, Sanctification and Glorification or they will believe in Monergy only for Justification, while a little bit of synergy for Sanctification, only to jump right back to Monergy towards the end of Sanctification because of the doctrine of P.O.T.S.


Feel free to list books I need to read in order to understand why Scottish Presbyterianism is different from what I'm use to. But just know that's it's gonna take a while for I'm in the middle of writing a book. And that needs to come first.

Drake Shelton said...

I am still trying to get a specific definition for monergism and how it is used. I want to emphasize that I am into Gordon clark's philosophy. There are a few necessary overlaps into theology but for the most part I do not take his distinctive theological positions. I get my systematic theology from the Scottish divines though girardeau is so close to the Scottish theology that I quote him authoritatively. After the past two years I get all my triadology and christology from you guys, Cappadocian triadology and maximian christology is very strong. I guess I take from what I think each of these groups are the strongest on.

Drake Shelton said...

Jnorm,in reference to the passive thing and monotheletism:

WCF 10.2 "This effectual call is of God's free and special grace alone, not from anything at all foreseen in man, who is altogether passive therein, until, being quickened and renewed by the Holy Spirit, he is thereby enabled to answer this call, and to embrace the grace offered and conveyed in it."

Robert Shaw Commenting on this says,

7. That in this calling the sinner is altogether passive, until he is quickened and renewed by the Holy Spirit. Here it is proper to distinguish between regeneration and conversion; in the former the sinner is passive - in the latter he is active, or co-operates with the grace of God. In regeneration a principle of grave is implanted in the soul, and previous to this the sinner is incapable of moral activity; for, in the language of inspiration, he is "dead in trespasses and sins." In conversion the soul turns to God, which imports activity; but still the sinner only acts as he is acted upon by God, who "worketh in him both to will and to do."


Robert Shae cdomments upon conversion an co=operation are vital.

Drake Shelton said...

I am surprised (but really not) that you find me a different kind of Calvinist. I am simply quoting standard works of the Scottish Presbyterians. Robert Shaw's Commentary on the Confession has been the standard commentary on the confession in the scottish groups for about 200 years now.

"Also the Calvinists I know either believe in Monergy all the way through......Justification, Sanctification and Glorification or they will believe in Monergy only for Justification, while a little bit of synergy for Sanctification, only to jump right back to Monergy towards the end of Sanctification because of the doctrine of P.O.T.S"

POTS?

"Feel free to list books I need to read in order to understand why Scottish Presbyterianism is different from what I'm use to."

Well, Robert Shaw's Confession is the standard summary theological manual of the original westminster confession. Both of us You and I that is, have issues with his Scholastic triadology. The primary thing that distinguishes the Scottish groups from the American is the issues of worship and society. The Scottish divines [and this is indicative of the relationship John Knox had with Calvin in the mid 1500s when Knox came back to Geneva from debating the English prelates. At this point the worship of God is the Sine qua non of what it means to be reformed. Luther started to come around on this when he was debating the romanists over the sacraments. They would ask him, why not the other 5 sacraments and luther would respond that they were not commanded in God's word, i.e. reg. principle. Methinks if Luther would have lived 50 years longer he would have come around to the puritan views on this stuff. It was in Geneva in the 1550's that Calvin and Knox clearly saw the direction that Reformation doctrine logically led. Knox comes back to Scotland starts debating all the Roman Catholic Priests and withing a centuery Scotland was an Established Presbyterian Country.] considered worship to be the key issue and all worship traditions that had no warrant in the Bible were illegal, i.e. Christmas and all holy days except the observance of the Sunday Sabbath, sacrifice of the mass, no musical instrumentation in worship, only pslams were sung. This view of authority led immediatley to their view of government, ergo Rutherford's Lex Rex was written, Divine right of kings refuted and Western Civilization was changed probably forever. The problem for the Americans is that they took the benefits of Lex Rex but did not want the responsibility, namely, Christ as the sole authority of human government and all aspects of human society designed to serve the one and true sovereign Lord.

Drake Shelton said...

The Scottish financial theory was more socialistic than American red republicans. You can read Thomas Chalmer's Christian and Economic Polity of a Nation: with Special Reference to Large Towns. We have had our hyper calvinists and hyper monergists and there were debates over this stuff but the confession is clear and Robert Shaw methinks got most everything right. Also, Samuel Rutherford's Free Disputation was the key work against pluralism, theological scepticism and the defintions of heresy. It also laid the foundation for and succeeded in persuading scotland for about 3 centuries that mulitple religious institutions in a society is a bad idea and that a nation should strive in whatever capacity to work out theological problems and present to mankind one true church and religion. Very different than the American.


Systemtic Theology in General
Robert Shaw's Commentary on the Westmninster Confession

Worship:
Directory for Public Worship: Westminster Standards
George Gellespie-English Popish Ceremonies

Government and Economics
Samuel Rutherford's Lex Rex
Thomas Chalmer's Christian and Economic Polity of a Nation: with Special Reference to Large Towns

Ecclesiology
Samuel Rutherford's Free Disputation

The Westminster Assembly and Confession was dominated by the Church of Scotland and these American guys have mostly destroyed what was originally established in the 16 th and 17 th centuries in Scotland. To be reformed is to be Scottish Puritan at least in Systematic/Covenant, Worship, Government, and Ecclesiology. Just the whole American thing has pretty much ruined the Reformation and Rutherford warned this would happen.

Anonymous said...

Drake,

I was never an Anabaptist, I was raised Southern Baptist, but we rarely went. I attended an RPCUS church for 4 years and went to Bahnsen Seminary. I have a large reformed library, including John L. Girardeau, as anyone who knows me well will tell you.

Anonymous said...

-jay

Drake Shelton said...

Jay,
here: http://joshbrisby.blogspot.com/2008/01/debate-weastern-orthodox-part-1-jay.html
You mentioned being a baptist bible college student, and I remember you saying in some article i read a year and a half ago or so that you were in a reformed baptist church when you discovered that the early church was anchoretic . You confronted paul washer about it and on you went to rome. It was a while ago but i remeber the article pretty well. I also remeber you using arguments in the above linked article that the regulative principle was wrong because the scripture mentions something happening at the command of David, ignoring the explicity passages that say specifically that everything in the temple was given by command of God and second that David was a prophet. This showed me you never read John L Girardeau's book on instruments and that you haver read rudimentary material on the regulative principle. That sounds like an anabaptist to me.

Drake Shelton said...

Jay,

By my reply I am not suggesting you start in on this thread. I have read every theological article you have written and most of them multiple times. I know what you have to say and don't care to have any contact with you. From my earlier "experience" with you you don't come across like someone who cares to represent his opponent accurately, you only answer counter arguments you are confortable with and just like most other apologists I have encountered you completely ignore epistemic issues, which makes any conversation completely pointless. Your replies to me have been mostly the most insolent huberis I have ever read. What is jay's favorite reply, "you don't have a clue how clueless you are". Or no this is my favorite, when jay replies to me with how immature i am and how wise and learned he is with his ancient age of 31 or something.

I have been a christian for 12 years. I lost my woman, every friend I have had since i was in the third grade, my scholarship from school, my career which ended up costing me my health and any possibility to have a career and a family over christian theology and this insolent so called "christian" is going to tell me that I need to grow up before I am qualified to speak to him.

If you post here I'm no longer participating. Jnorm and I have a long standing dialogue and I would rather not ruin it because quite frankly i don't feel like much of a christian when jay is around.

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