Alpha & Omega Ministries Apologetics Blog
London Televised Predestination Discussion #6
07/31/2007 - James WhiteContinuing the discussion from back on May 16th in London on predestination. I actually got to make a comment on the universalist caller here as the first hour came to a close. Tony Lane of the London School of Theology had to leave after this portion, so the rest of the discussion was between myself, Edward Buama, and the callers. Remember that I already posted the call in the second hour with the Jehovah's Witness.
Archive to all the Critiques on Steve Gregg
07/30/2007 - Alan KurschnerI have placed here a collection of all the Dividing Line Radio shows with James White responding to Steve Gregg's claims and interpretations. If you know anyone who follows Gregg's teachings, send them this link so they can be provided this thorough critique.
1. Introduction to Gregg's synergism; and John 6. Here.
2. Gregg's ignorance of standard Reformed literature; his misrepresentations of the Reformed understanding of God's nature, God's love, justice, and the topic of assurance. Here.
3. His errors of Greek grammar; his misrepresentations on predestination; 1Peter 2:8; Acts 13:48. Here.
4. Full discussion on Acts 13:48 and responding to Gregg's errant interpretation of this text. Here.
5. Exposition on Romans 9. Here.
6. Part 1 - Critique of his interpretation on Romans 9. Here.
7. Part 2 - Critique of his interpretation on Romans 9. Here.
Radio Free Geneva Video Redub
07/29/2007 - James WhiteJaiotu posted this on YouTube. I almost used the Gregg clip about the tractor beam in my own theme mix, but decided not to, and had forgotten that Hunt clip where he called me John White. Maybe that keeps happening because they mix John Piper's name into mine somehow? Anyway, I thought I'd share this.
London Televised Predestination Program (#5)
07/29/2007 - James WhiteNow, this is something you won't see very often. I don't get to say a word in this clip. But, I said a few things with just my face. Watch me as I figure out this caller is a universalist before he makes that explicit.
London Televised Predestination Discussion #4
07/27/2007 - James WhiteI'll be honest, trying to get something accomplished once the phone calls start in a context like this is...very difficult. But, I give it the ol' college try.
London Televised Discussion of Predestination (#3)
07/24/2007 - James WhiteOne of the odd things about this particular program was that smack dab in the middle of a sentence, they switched the digital channel they were on. You'll see that appear in this clip.
The Televised London Predestination Conversation
07/23/2007 - James WhiteThe London predestination discussion continued.
The London Televised Discussion of Predestination
07/21/2007 - James WhiteWith many thanks to Martin, our UK DL listener and friend, I recently received a recording of the discussion I did on "Revelation TV" with London School of Theology professor Tony Lane (Ph.D., Oxford) and Edward Boamah (graduate of Trinity Seminary) on May 16th, 2007. I will be posting hopefully useful sections here on the blog.
Happy Birthday, Jean Cauvin
07/10/2007 - James WhiteJean Cauvin, aka, John Calvin, was born July 10, 1509 in Noyon, France. Today is Calvin's 498th birthday.
I have often said that the ink of Calvin's writings smudges. That is, he had the ability to write in a timeless fashion, in a way that speaks to generation after generation. His was a rare gift.
I could pray that God would raise up more Calvins in our day of desperate apostasy in the West, but that would be a blessing we truly do not deserve. So on this Calvin's 498th birthday, a voice from the past that speaks clearly still:
Again, it is certain that man never achieves a clear knowledge of himself unless he has first looked upon God's face, and then descends from contemplating him to scrutinize himself. For we always seem to ourselves righteous and upright and wise and holy -- this pride is innate in all of us -- unless by clear proofs we stand convinced of our own unrighteousness, foulness, folly, and impurity. Moreover, we are not thus convinced if we look merely to ourselves and not also to the Lord, who is the sole standard by which this judgment must be measured. For, because all of us are inclined by nature to hypocrisy, a kind of empty image of righteousness in place of righteousness itself abundantly satisfies us. And because nothing appears within or around us that has not been contaminated by great immorality, what is a little less vile pleases us as a thing most pure -- so long as we confine our minds within the limits of human corruption. Just so, an eye to which nothing is shown but black objects judges something dirty white or even rather darkly mottled to be whiteness itself. Indeed, we can discern still more clearly from the bodily senses how much we are deluded in estimating the powers of the soul. For if in broad daylight we either look down upon the ground or survey whatever meets our view round about, we seem to ourselves endowed with the strongest and keenest sight; yet when we look up to the sun and gaze straight at it, that power of sight which was particularly strong on earth is at once blunted and confused by a great brilliance, and thus we are compelled to admit that our keenness in looking upon things earthly is sheer dullness when it comes to the sun. So it happens in estimating our spiritual goods. As long as we do not look beyond the earth, being quite content with our own righteousness, wisdom, and virtue, we flatter ourselves most sweetly, and fancy ourselves all but demigods. Suppose we but once begin to raise our thoughts to God, and to ponder his nature, and how completely perfect are his righteousness, wisdom, and power -- the straightedge to which we must be shaped. Then, what masquerading earlier as righteousness was pleasing in us will soon grow filthy in its consummate wickedness. What wonderfully impressed us under the name of wisdom will stink in its very foolishness. What wore the face of power will prove itself the most miserable weakness. That is, what in us seems perfection itself corresponds ill to the purity of God. (Institutes I:I:2)
Synergism Belongs in a Car Dealership, not in Divine Salvation.
07/05/2007 - Alan KurschnerThe "Calvinist vs. Arminian" debate throughout church history is substantially a debate between what is called "synergism" and "monergism." It is impossible for there to be any third option (well, ok, if one is willing to be a Pelagian). For those who are new to the Calvinist-Arminian debate, the following is an instructive primer on the two perennial branches of theological systems in Christianity. Or to put it another way, there are two very different ways for believers to view their salvation.
In general, the first type (the Arminian-Synergist) affirm what is called "synergism." They believe that two forces in the universe are necessary to bring about regeneration in the life of the sinner. In specifics, the two forces at work (cooperation) that are necessary to bring about regeneration, or spiritual life, is the will of man and the Holy Spirit (grace).
To put it another way, the work of the Holy Spirit is dependent on the creature’s will, hence, “synergism” (working together). These individuals will sincerely say, “I believe in grace alone.” But in reality, they believe that grace is not alone (sufficient), but that man’s will is necessary for regeneration to be effective.
It could be said that these individuals are “functional” Arminians because even though some will deny the label, their theology functions synergistically (thus, how they identify themselves is inconsistent with what they teach and believe).
The second group of believers (the Calvinist-Monergist) affirm what is called “monergism.” They believe that there is only one force in the universe (grace alone) that brings about regeneration in the life of the sinner. In specifics, because of the deadness of man’s spiritual state, his moral inability, the Holy Spirit performs the miracle of spiritual resurrection (regeneration) in that person, hence, “monergism” (one work). Grace is sufficient to be effective, and does not depend on some action of man.
In other words, the Holy Spirit does not merely whisper in the hardened sinner’s ear and hopes that the rebel sinner will “cooperate”; rather, while the sinner is in a state of hardness and rebellion, the Holy Spirit penetrates in the will of man and performs the miracle of spiritual life (regeneration). That is grace alone. Faith does not precede regeneration, regeneration precedes faith.
But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions– it is by grace you have been saved. Ephesians 2:4-5
Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.” John 1:12-13
He who belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.” John 8:47Arminians cannot affirm monergism (grace alone); they must always have the creature’s will as the final determiner of their destiny, not God. I must give Arminians some credit though. Invariably, they pray (without knowing) Calvinisticly, “God, change my unbelieving relative’s heart.” I have never heard them pray, “God, only whisper in my relative’s ear, but don’t change their heart unless you’ve been given permission.” But the Calvinist prays and affirms biblical truth consistently.
For further reading on this subject, see this copious source.