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Calvinism

Why saving grace must be irresistible

The fourth point of Calvinism is Irresistible Grace.  This doctrine says that when God calls us to faith in Jesus he calls effectively; he always succeeds in his purpose to save us.

The Bible distinguished between the general call of God to all sinners to come to Jesus (e.g. Jesus saying “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest”) and the specific call or summons God gives to his elect (e.g. Romans 1:6…you also are among those who are called to belong to Jesus Christ…)
Categories
Calvinism

Why I believe in Limited Atonement

Who did Jesus die for? What did Jesus’ death actually achieve?

These two questions point to the heart of the third so-called point of Calvinism1, “Limited Atonement2“. Most Christians would say that Jesus died for all the sins of every person in the entire world.   In other words, Jesus paid the price for each sin of every person and we apply that forgiveness to us personally when we put our faith in Jesus.

Categories
planning ahead Proverbs

To plan or not to plan?

Most of us don’t have a plan. No plan for our life, no plan for our finances or health and no plan for our spiritual growth. Proverbs says that we are acting foolishly. Proverbs tells us that we should plan ahead. Proverbs 21:5 says, “The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.”
We should plan because God has a plan. God has a plan for each of our lives (Psalm 139:16), Jesus was part of God’s plan (Acts 4:26-27) and even our salvation is included in God’s master plan (Ephesians 1:11). God is a planner and we strive to be like him.

The first part our plan should be to follow Jesus, as Proverbs tells us “the fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom”.  Next, as we plan, we should ask ourselves four questions:

1. What does the Bible say about this?
This is a question or righteousness. To make a plan contrary to biblical principles or in disobedience to what the Bible says, would be sin. What does the Bible say about earning money or who to marry. As you begin your plan, chech out biblical principles.

2. What does wisdom say?
This is not a question of right or wrong, but of wisdom and foolishness. Just because a plan may not be sin, does not mean that its wise. It may not be a sin to plan to accept a particular job offer, but it may not be wise.

3. What do other mature Christians say?
Proverbs 15:22 says “Without counsel purposes are disappointed: but in the multitude of counsellors they are established.”
4. What do I prefer?
When you’ve answered out all the above questions (and spent time in prayer), the last issue is your preference. If what you are doing is not a sin, if its wise and you have the backing of other Christians, you are free to use the natural preferences and likes God has given you. E.g. you might prefer a Toyota to a Honda after planning that buying a car in this price bracket would be the wisest thing to do to get to work to earn some money to provide for your family.
Do you have a plan? If not: Submit to God, study the bible, speak to others, pray, and use your God-given brain to plan!
Categories
Calvinism

Free Will vs. Total Depravity

Can we choose God? Would we ever want to choose God? Do we have free will?

These questions have caused controversy amongst Christians throughout church history. The reformed doctrine of Total Depravity speaks to this.