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What brought you to a Calvinistic Theology? #53291
Fri Mar 03, 2017 11:34 AM
Fri Mar 03, 2017 11:34 AM
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JesusFan Offline OP
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Mine was reading mainly Hodge and calvin, and then following up with Berkhoff, how about you?

Re: What brought you to a Calvinistic Theology? [Re: JesusFan] #53292
Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:06 PM
Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:06 PM
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Pilgrim Offline

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Reading the Bible was how God brought me to the doctrines of sovereign grace, aka: Calvinism. This revelation (illumination by the Spirit) was later confirmed through Berkhof's Systematic Theology, The Works of Jonathan Edwards, and The Works of John Owen.


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Re: What brought you to a Calvinistic Theology? [Re: Pilgrim] #53295
Fri Mar 03, 2017 4:03 PM
Fri Mar 03, 2017 4:03 PM
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Have not yet read owens/edwards, where to start?

Re: What brought you to a Calvinistic Theology? [Re: JesusFan] #53297
Fri Mar 03, 2017 8:15 PM
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Pilgrim Offline

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Originally Posted by JesusFan
Have not yet read owens/edwards, where to start?

Usually the "Introduction" or "Preface" moving on to page 1 and continuing on to the end of the volume. John Owen's Works are 16 volumes, btw and not easy reading. It might take you awhile to complete that set. wink Even J.I. Packer wrote that it took him several readings of just "The Death of Death in the Death of Christ" (contained in vol. 5) before he was able to grasp Owen's thinking. I concur as I had to read it through 3 times before I was able to follow Owen's complex logic, which is 100% sound. But it well worth the effort and I benefited from it immensely. An easier read is Owen's The Glory of Christ BigThumbUp

Jonathan Edwards' Works are challenging as well. His treatise on church membership goes 80 pages but it is magnificent.


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Re: What brought you to a Calvinistic Theology? [Re: Pilgrim] #53303
Sat Mar 04, 2017 3:30 PM
Sat Mar 04, 2017 3:30 PM
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Have started the Glory now, and you are right in stating that he is very deep!
Neither gentlemen would be on the Christian bestsellers list today, as many would find them to hard to read and grasp, and instead go to stuff like "good morning Holy Spirit"

Re: What brought you to a Calvinistic Theology? [Re: JesusFan] #53309
Mon Mar 06, 2017 3:12 AM
Mon Mar 06, 2017 3:12 AM
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Tom Offline
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God

Re: What brought you to a Calvinistic Theology? [Re: JesusFan] #53312
Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:47 AM
Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:47 AM
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The answer I gave earlier "God" though true, were given because of my mood at the time.

Basically though I had heard of Calvinism before and actually very early in my Christian walk an older couple tried to teach both my mom and I about the Calvinism. However, for whatever reason neither of us comprehended what they were trying to teach us.
It was not until years later when I was looking for a Christian board that I found 'The Highway'. At that time, believe it or not I thought a Calvinist was just a person who believed "once saved, always saved."
Boy oh boy was I in for a rude awakening when God brought me to 'The Highway'. I began to see over time the complexities of Calvinism and how it was a lot more than just the doctrines of grace.
I must admit though I had a thirst for the truth, which caused me not to let go of trying to find out the truth. I fought hard against what I was seeing, and it caused me many a sleepless night and stress in my family. Even after I embraced these doctrines, I did so not because I liked them, rather because I could not argue against how biblical they were. I knew deep down that it did not matter if I liked Calvinism, it mattered whether they were biblical or not.
I think it was only after I was reading Romans 9 concerning election, that a light went on concerning why I didn't like these doctrines. Basically, I was looking at them through a worldly sense of what I thought was fair. Rather than through the eyes of my sovereign God.
So 'The Highway" is where I cut my Reformed teeth and just like a baby who is teething it hurt!

Tom

Re: What brought you to a Calvinistic Theology? [Re: JesusFan] #53313
Tue Mar 07, 2017 5:46 AM
Tue Mar 07, 2017 5:46 AM
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Reading the scriptures brought me to the doctrines of grace, though I didn't know it had a name. I had been warned in my SBC and AOG churches about "cold-hearted, head-knowledge-only 'Christians'" known as "Calvinists."

"The worst sort of people, who don't believe in evangelism and missions, Calvinists are to be avoided and kept at a distance!"

Yet the Scriptures point so clearly to the doctrines of grace that they are unavoidable. Asking my pastor about the things I was finding in scripture was no help at all, and in our last such meeting he accused me of having been "in cahoots with some damned Calvinist."

I left determined not to go go back, and not to tithe another penny to a church that wasn't even willing to search the scriptures. And I wondered, "Are my discoveries in the bible Calvinist?" And I looked up Calvinism and was like, "Omygosh, what have I become?"

I was someone who accepted what the bible says, no matter how distasteful to my EGO, to my FLESH, to my high opinion of myself and other fallen, corrupt, thoroughly evil sinners, deserving only the justice of a thrice-holy God. And here's the big difference for me:

The doctrines of grace give ALL the credit and ALL the glory to GOD ALONE. Redeemed sinners do not share the credit as if they "chose to become alive" from death and "chose a new Master" while still in chains, bound by sin, guilt, fear, and their own corruption. Salvation begins and ends with God, who shares His glory with no creature. All we have and ever will have is what our sovereign King gives. Whether we receive His justice for our sin or His mercy, is entirely at His discretion, and was decreed before the worlds were created.

Soli Deo Gloria!

Re: What brought you to a Calvinistic Theology? [Re: JesusFan] #53314
Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:04 AM
Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:04 AM
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I fully bought in when I realized Martin Luther was a Calvinist (see Bondage of the Will)....and reading up on the great ecf Augustine that referenced Scriptures often to combat early free will controversies.

Also, consider how many great reformers & theologians were Calvinist....check out Amazing Grace: History of Calvinism DVD....not perfect, but love the presented church history

Last edited by AJ Castellitto; Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:09 AM.
Re: What brought you to a Calvinistic Theology? [Re: Robin] #53315
Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:05 AM
Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Robin
Reading the scriptures brought me to the doctrines of grace, though I didn't know it had a name. I had been warned in my SBC and AOG churches about "cold-hearted, head-knowledge-only 'Christians'" known as "Calvinists."

"The worst sort of people, who don't believe in evangelism and missions, Calvinists are to be avoided and kept at a distance!"

Yet the Scriptures point so clearly to the doctrines of grace that they are unavoidable. Asking my pastor about the things I was finding in scripture was no help at all, and in our last such meeting he accused me of having been "in cahoots with some damned Calvinist."

I left determined not to go go back, and not to tithe another penny to a church that wasn't even willing to search the scriptures. And I wondered, "Are my discoveries in the bible Calvinist?" And I looked up Calvinism and was like, "Omygosh, what have I become?"

I was someone who accepted what the bible says, no matter how distasteful to my EGO, to my FLESH, to my high opinion of myself and other fallen, corrupt, thoroughly evil sinners, deserving only the justice of a thrice-holy God. And here's the big difference for me:

The doctrines of grace give ALL the credit and ALL the glory to GOD ALONE. Redeemed sinners do not share the credit as if they "chose to become alive" from death and "chose a new Master" while still in chains, bound by sin, guilt, fear, and their own corruption. Salvation begins and ends with God, who shares His glory with no creature. All we have and ever will have is what our sovereign King gives. Whether we receive His justice for our sin or His mercy, is entirely at His discretion, and was decreed before the worlds were created.

Soli Deo Gloria!

I love the term 'Doctrines of Grace'.....well said!

Re: What brought you to a Calvinistic Theology? [Re: Tom] #53322
Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:28 PM
Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:28 PM
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Mine was while in the Assemblies of God church, as was a teaching Elder, trained in their school, and yet never bought into their second act of grace, Baptism in Holy Ghost, and wanted to learn more on theology, so here i was , a Pentacostal christian, ordering theology by Charles Hodge!

Re: What brought you to a Calvinistic Theology? [Re: JesusFan] #53325
Tue Mar 07, 2017 1:59 PM
Tue Mar 07, 2017 1:59 PM
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Tom Offline
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A teaching elder that didn't buy into their teaching?
First why would you become a teaching elder if you didn't buy into it?
Second, why would they allow you to become a teaching elder?

Re: What brought you to a Calvinistic Theology? [Re: Tom] #53335
Wed Mar 08, 2017 10:26 AM
Wed Mar 08, 2017 10:26 AM
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I was a Pentecostal sort of, as did hold to the spiritual gifts in operation for today, and that tongues was one of them, but NOT the sign of having the "Baptism in Holy Ghost", as did not buy into that second act of Grace. What happened is that eventually my conviction was so strong from scriptures that was forced to resign from the Church, but did leave in good standing, as the pastor recommended my to next church for membership, and he did attend my fathers funeral several years after I had left!


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