Sunday, February 27, 2011

Calvin's Contradictory, Illogical Writing

The quote below is from John Calvin's Institutes, Book III, chapter XXIII, verse 8. In the first sentence that begins in bold (mine) notice that Adam fell because God "deemed it meet" which means this is what God thought best (predestined, foreordination). The first underlined section highlights three things that are typical Calvinistic defensive positions used after stating something that is unscriptural and illogical:
  1. Claim mystery or paradox - "we know not."
  2. Rush to God's known character to hide - "it was just"
  3. Always end with God's being glorified no matter how stupid your logic in getting there is - "His own glory would thereby be displayed."
Whatever!? It is a strategy that has worked for 500 years because for me, a mere mortal Bible reader, to disagree with Calvin's statement, "The first man fell because the Lord deemed it necessary," means that I must claim to:
  1. Know the mysteries that even Calvin himself dared not explain
  2. Challenge God's character and blasphemously say God's actions are not "just"
  3. Steal God's "glory" to satisfy my own fallen pride and self-glory 
Who would dare do these things. It is best not to face the Romans 9 rebuke: "Who are you, O man, to talk back to God?" Yet, I will talk back to Calvin and his morbid theology.

The second bold sentence is a beautiful example of a Calvinistic contradiction:
  1. Man Falls
  2. Divine Providence Ordained Man's Fall
  3. It is Man's Fault
How can God deem it necessary and ordain man's fall, then while man has no chance of avoiding the fall, God blames man. After God's will has been done, man is guilty, even damned because of God's will? But, again we hear from the Calvinist, "Who are you, O man, to talk back to God?"

Then notice the final underlined sentences. All of these lines stress the mystery of God's ways and actually say that those of us who want to understand these things and expect God to be logical are "a species of madness." Here, Calvin demands that I subject my intellect, my will, my curiosity, my logic to the "boundless wisdom of God." We know from history that a search into the "boundless wisdom of God" in Geneva in the 1500's ended with banishment or death for those who would challenge, not just the Bible, but this book that the quote below comes from, Institutes by Calvin.

Is this were we should quote Paul's doxology at the end of Romans 11? - "O, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God." or, should we continue to pursue truth and reject Calvin and Calvinism?
The first man fell because the Lord deemed it meet (necessary, fitting) that he should: why he deemed it meet (necessary, fitting), we know not. It is certain, however, that it was just, because he saw that his own glory would thereby be displayed. When you hear the glory of God mentioned, understand that his justice is included. For that which deserves praise must be just. Man therefore falls, divine providence so ordaining, but he falls by his own fault. The Lord had a little before declared that all the things which he had made were very good (Gen. 1:31). Whence then the depravity of man, which made him revolt from God? Lest it should be supposed that it was from his creation, God had expressly approved what proceeded from himself. Therefore man's own wickedness corrupted the pure nature which he had received from God, and his ruin brought with it the destruction of all his posterity. Wherefore, let us in the corruption of human nature contemplate the evident cause of condemnation (a cause which comes more closely home to us), rather than inquire into a cause hidden and almost incomprehensible in the predestination of God. Nor let us decline to submit our judgment to the boundless wisdom of God, so far as to confess its insufficiency to comprehend many of his secrets. Ignorance of things which we are not able, or which it is not lawful to know, is learning, while the desire to know them is a species of madness.
Galyn Wiemers
Generation Word