Sunday, January 23, 2011

The Either/Or Fallacy

Here is a portion of the information that will eventually be part of a chapter called "Paradoxes, Illogical Assumptions, Contradictions and Either/Or Fallacies." The information comes from the study of predestination.

An either/or fallacy is when an artificial range of choices is present. It is an attempt to force believers into choosing the Calvinistic position by presenting only two possible options. One choice is the Calvinistic position and the other is an unscriptural alternative. Often the choices force you to choose one extreme or the other. But, in reality there may actually be three or more choices. Here are some of the either/or fallacies that have been presented to me this last week through audio or books concerning predestination:

1. It is either a God ruled universe or a man ruled universe.
2. Either God is causing salvation or Man is working for salvation.
3. Either Christ died only for the elect so that only the elect are saved, or Christ died for everyone and everyone is saved.
4. Either man’s free will is completely dead and can not respond to God or man does not have a sin nature and is inherently good.
5. Either God controls nations just like a man controls a staff and breaks them down, gives them peace, sends them famine as he pleases or God is a mere spectator in the Universe.
6. Either God is in control and he decides all the details or man has free will and God can not control him.
7. Either the affairs of men are in the hands of a God of infinite power, wisdom, holiness and love or they are left to fate, chance, natural law or short-sighted people. (Boettner, The Reformed Doctrine Predestination, p. 32.)
8. Either history is controlled by the sovereignty of God who predestines, or history is controlled by the autocracy of human will. (Boettner, The Reformed Doctrine Predestination, p. 33.)
9. What God foreknows is fixed and certain. But, if man has free will then nothing God foreknows can be certain. (Boettner, The Reformed Doctrine Predestination, p. 42.)
10. Either future events are foreordained by a wise, heavenly father, or future events are the result of blind, physical fate. (Boettner, The Reformed Doctrine Predestination, p. 42.)
11. Foreknowledge implies certainty and certainty implies foreordination. But, the free will of man must deny foreknowledge. (Boettner, The Reformed Doctrine Predestination, p. 44.)
12. Calvinism loses itself in the adoration of the grace and omnipotence of God. But, belief in the free will of man loves to admire the dignity and strength of men. (Boettner, The Reformed Doctrine Predestination, p. 49.)

It would seem we are missing some of the information if these are the only choices we have. 

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