Twelve Myths About Calvinism

1. Calvinism is not a system of theology that denies God’s universal love.

While there are some Calvinists who do deny God’s universal love for all men, this is certainly not a necessary or a central tenet of Calvinism. Calvinists do, however, believe that God has a particular type of love for the elect (an “electing love”), but most also believe that God loves all people (John 3:16). It is a mystery to Calvinists as to why he does not elect everyone. (More on this here.)

2. Calvinism is not a belief that God creates people in order to send them to hell.

Again, this is not representative of normative Calvinism. While supralapsarians do believe that God creates people to send them to hell, the majority of Calvinists are not supralapsarians. (More on this here.)

3. Calvinism is not a belief that God is the author of evil.

Because of Calvinism’s high view of God’s sovereignty, many mistakenly believe that Calvinists hold God responsible for sin and evil. This is not true. There are very few Calvinists who believe that God is the author of evil. Most Calvinists believe that to ascribe responsibility for evil to God is unorthodox.

As John Calvin put it:

“. . . the Lord had declared that ‘everything that he had made . . . was exceedingly good’ [Gen. 1:31]. Whence, then comes this wickedness to man, that he should fall away from his God? Lest we should think it comes from creation, God had put His stamp of approval on what had come forth from himself. By his own evil intention, then, man corrupted the pure nature he had received from the Lord; and by his fall drew all his posterity with him into destruction. Accordingly, we should contemplate the evident cause of condemnation in the corrupt nature of humanity-which is closer to us-rather than seek a hidden and utterly incomprehensible cause in God’s predestination. [Institutes, 3:23:8]”

4. Calvinism is not a belief in fatalism.

A fatalistic worldview is one in which all things are left to fate, chance, and a series of causes and effects that has no intelligent guide or ultimate cause. Calvinism believes that God (not fate) is in control, though Calvinists differ about how meticulous this control is.

5. Calvinism is not a denial of freedom.

Calvinists do not believe that people are robots or puppets on strings. Calvinists believe in freedom and, properly defined, free will. While Calvinists believe that God is ultimately in control of everything, most are compatibilists, believing that he works in and with human freedom (limited though it may be). Calvinists believe in human responsibility at the same time that they hold a high view of God’s providential sovereignty. (More on this here.)

6. Calvinism is not a belief that God forces people to become Christians against their will.

Calvinists believe in what is called “irresistible grace.” This might not be the best name for it since it does not really communicate what is involved. Calvinists believe that people are dead in their sin (Eph 2:1), haters of God, with no ability to seek him in their natural state (Rom 3:11John 6:44; 1 Cor 2:14). Since this is the case, God must first regenerate them so that they can have faith. Once regenerate, people do not need to be forced to accept God, but this is a natural reaction—a willing reaction—of one who has been born again and, for the first time, recognizes the beauty of God. That is an action that they will always choose due to their new inclinations.

7. Calvinism is not a belief that you should only evangelize the elect.

No one knows who the elect are. I suppose that if there was a way to find out, both Calvinists and Arminians (the main alternative to Calvinism) would only evangelize the elect (since Arminians also believe only the elect will be saved even though they understand election differently). Since we don’t know, it is our duty to evangelize all people and nations. Some of the greatest evangelists in the history of Christianity, such as Charles Haddon Spurgeon and Jonathan Edwards, have held to the doctrine of unconditional election.

8. Calvinism is not a belief that God arbitrarily chooses people to be saved.

Calvinists believe that God elects some people to salvation and not others and that this election is not based on anything present or foreseen, righteous or unrighteous, in the individual, but upon God’s sovereign choice (Rom. 9:11). But this does not mean that the choice is arbitrary, as if God is flipping a coin to see who is  saved and who is not. Calvinists believe that God has his reasons, but they are in his mysterious secret will.

9. Calvinism is not a system of thought that follows a man, John Calvin.

While Calvinists obviously respect John Calvin, they simply believe that he correctly understood and systematized some very important Apostolic teachings concerning election, man’s condition, and God’s sovereignty. However, much of this understanding did not originate with John Calvin, but can be seen in many throughout church history such as Aquinas, Anselm, and Augustine. Ultimately, Calvinists will argue, they follow rightly interpreted Scripture.

10. Calvinism is not a system that has to ignore or reinterpret passages of Scripture concerning human responsibility.

Calvinists believe that all people are responsible to do what is right even though, as fallen children of Adam, they lack the ability to do what is right (in a transcendent sense; see below) without God’s regenerating grace. Therefore, God’s call and commands apply to all people and all people are responsible for their rejection and rebellion. It is upon this basis that judgement takes place.

11. Calvinists do not believe that no one can do any good thing at all.

Calvinists believe in what is called “total depravity” (as do Arminians). However, total depravity does not mean that people cannot ever do anything good. Calvinists believe that unregenerate people can do many good things and sometimes even act better than Christians. But when it comes to people’s disposition toward God and their acknowledgment of him for their abilities, gifts, and future, they deny him and therefore taint all that they are and do. An unbeliever, for example, can love and care for his children just as a believer can. In and of itself this is a very good thing. However, in relation to God this finds no eternal or transcendent favor since they are at war with him, the Giver of all things. Therefore, it might be said, while all people can do good, only the regenerate can do transcendent good.

12. Calvinists do not necessarily believe that God predestines (wills) everything, including the color of socks I chose this morning.

There is a spectrum of belief about God’s sovereignty in Calvinism. The one thing that unites all Calvinists is their belief in God’s sovereign choice to elect some people to salvation and not others. However, Calvinists differ concerning God’s involvement in other areas (for more on this, see here). Some Calvinists believe in what might be called “meticulous sovereignty,” where God has not only predestined people to salvation, but he has also predestined everything that occurs. As the old saying goes, “There is not a maverick molecule in the universe.” However, most Calvinists believe in what might be called “providential sovereignty.” Here, Calvinists would distinguish between God’s permissive will and his sovereign will. In his permissive will, many things happen that he permits, but is not necessarily bringing about as the first cause. In his sovereign will, many things happen because of his direct intervention (for more on this, see here).

166 Responses to “Twelve Myths About Calvinism”

  1. Amen to these! Here is some real “neo”-Calvinism! I hope many people will peruse these!

  2. While there are some Calvinists who do deny God’s universal love for all man, this is certainly not a necessary or a central tenet of Calvinism. Calvinists do, however, believe that God has a particular type of love for the elect (an “electing love”), but most also believe that God loves all people (John 3:16).

    I’m sure I have stated this before, but truly this is one of my major problems with Calvinist theology.

    Is not the nature of love to desire the very best for the one that is loved? Or is that only a myth?

    A love that loves enough to give life and breath but makes the very deliberate choice to refuse what is needed the very most is a very strange kind of love it seems to me.

  3. Ultimately, the mystery of God’s electing love, is not found in any “humanism” itself, though God In Christ is surely fully human, but always God…”He being one Son (Divine), dual in nature, not dual in Person. Wherefore, we do confess, preaching the truth that Christ our God is perfect God and perfect Man.”

  4. Cherylu,

    Just more Calvinist double speak in my opinion.

  5. That’s funny, my quote was from an Eastern Orthodox, actually!

  6. Indeed the Bible is actually full of Judeo-Christian mystery! As Paul was a Jewish Hellenist and Greco-Roman. See, Gal. 4: 4-7.

  7. Note, and Paul uses the Greek word “musterion” i.e. mystery for the Gospel! (Col. 1: 26)

  8. I love my Calvinist brothers and sisters, but Calvinism leaves me cold.

    There’s no real assurance. Their Confessions of faith clearly address the problem of assurance by telling the believer to go inside and look within for evidence. Ha!

    We look to the external Word and sacraments …alone. In that we can have complete and utter assurance without going where the trouble started in the first place.


  9. For the most part classic Calvinism is indeed well endowed with God’s “musterion”! Always seeing God’s great “transcendence” and “immanence”, and certainly no “double speak” here, but only great mystery!

  10. Assurance, even for the Calvinist, certainly the “neo”-Calvinist, is always “Christ Jesus”! Risen, Ascended, the One and Only Mediator! (1 Tim. 2: 5-6)

  11. Again, note Paul asks us, as the Corinthians, to look “inside”…”Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you – unless indeed you fail the test?” (2 Cor. 13: 5) “yourselves” three times in this verse! “Christ in you, the hope of glory.” (Col. 1: 27)

  12. #9 in the original post says:
    “Calvinism is not a system of thought that follows a man, John Calvin”

    Isn’t that the truth! If he could come back and see what passes for Calvinism now, he would send people packing!

    All this does raise the question, “What IS Calvinism?” I suppose it’s a particular combination of doctrines. (Can’t you see the chart now? (: Essentials and Nonessentials of Calvinism in the 21st Century)
    It is pointed out that several prominent men held beliefs that sync with Calvinism, but it would be dishonest to say that these men held to be true all of what Calvinism holds true today. I think Calvin held a NEW combination of beliefs, never before seen in the history of Christendom until his time.

  13. And how are you doing, Fr. Robert?

    Passing the test?

    We look to what He has done, is doing, and will yet do for us. Totally apart from anything that we do, say, feel, or think.

    Calvin was alright. But Luther blew him right out of the water when it came to trusting in the external Word and sacraments.

  14. 1. There’s room for discussion about whether damning you to hell, and then letting a little sunshine fall on your head in the interim is really love.

    2. Supralapsarianism has got to do with God’s pre-fall intentions, and whether damnation to hell logically comes before the fall. Not all Calvinists are Supralapsarians, but yes all Canvinists believe God creates people to damn them to hell. The internal calvinist dispute is only about whether this happened logically before or after the fall.

    3. There is room for discussion about whether this is sophistry and whether Calvinism really does teach God is the author of evil.

    4. No, fatalism does not require no intelligent guide or cause. Calvinism IS fatalistic.

    5. There is room for discussion about whether this is sophistry and whether Calvinism really does teach there is no freedom.

    6. Since Calvinism teaches that God changes your will, then yes he does convert you against your prior will (although not your changed will).

    8. There may (or may not!) be secret reasons, in Calvinist thinking. But it IS arbitrary from the point of view that it nothing in us. If I flipped a coin to decide whether to kill you, there would be a reason (the result of the coin toss). Or if I killed people whose names began with “A”, there would be a reason. But by most measures, we would consider that “arbitrary”.

    11. But if you can do various good things, one has to ask by what logic it is denied that you can do the one thing of turning to God. Total Depravity depends on taking an extremist interpretation to some verses saying we can’t do good. But as soon as you admit you can do good, that kinda falls apart.

    12. True, but I think most Calvinists end up at meticulous sovereignty. Many of the verses Calvinists tend to quote about salvation predestination would mean meticulous sovereignty if you want to interpret it for salvation sovereignty. To hold off on meticulous, would be to abandon the proof texts for…

  15. Irene is correct, and CMP,as much as I love your work, it is the observation that cuts the legs out of Calvinism there is no such thing as Calvinism, because as you point out yourself, every calvinist believes that which is right in their own eyes. What it has become is a shield by which they ride their theological hobbyhorses behind, while in many cases taking positions diametrically opposed to what Calvin taught

  16. Calvinist rhetorical pattern:

    1. Paint yourself into a corner with doctrines that contradict various scriptures, contradict our common sense, etc.

    2. When the problems are pointed out, point to scriptures about “mystery.” Hope that no one notices that you are creating the “mysteries” through your strange doctrines, and the passages refer to mysteries that predate Calvinism.

  17. Anyone that knows anything about John Calvin himself, knows that Calvin was himself something of an Augustinian. Lot’s of mystery in Augustine’s doctrine of God, and thus too Calvin, even also Luther. GOD is always first Himself Transcendent and Totally Other for all of these men! But it would be true to see that todays “Calvinists” had a fresh dose of God’s Transcendent character & mystery (“musterion”)… Btw, one of St. Paul’s favorite Greek words to describe the doctrine of God! (1 Cor. 4: 1)

  18. @TOA: I see that your NOT reading Paul’s Text of 2 Cor. 13: 5. This verse surely destroys your idea that Luther and Lutheranism, does not care about the interior Christian life! Sorry mate, but the Holy Scripture is always our way and guide, and not OUR neat packages of theological ideas! As Luther said, ‘Let God be God’!

  19. I was raised in arminian independent Baptist churches. I prayed the sinner’s prayer at age 5 and I knew I wasn’t saved. But I started reading through the gospel of John and I realized that I could not be saved unless God chose me.
    Just before my 7th birthday, I rode my bicycle around the block, wondering why God would have chosen me. Foreseen faith? No-that means God would have learned something so that won’t work…..then I prayed my own prayer and as I felt God’s peace wash over me, I knew the Lord had just saved me and had given me His confirmation in my spirit.

    If Calvinism is just a mental construct, then how could I have possibly come to these conclusions at the age of 6 apart from the Holy Spirit?

  20. @Lora: Nice, and great point! The historical conversion statements of Augustine himself are also very similar!

    Btw, strange how quite ignorant many of our Arminian friends are of Augustine! He does not fit their theological model for sure! I am not sure I can remember seeing a quote from Augustine in the Wesley brothers? And I like them somewhat, since they were Anglicans!

  21. Fr. Robert,

    You’re right! We really don’t focus on the inward life. We live OUTWARD!

    Christ has taken care of (is taking care of) all the “interior stuff.

    We DO NOT get any assurance from looking within. We’ll leave all that stuff to the Catholics, Baptists, and Calvinists.

    Wherever we might look at our interior self, we do so for confirmation that we are not up to it and that we need a Savior.

    Like I said. Calvinism leaves me cold. I take a look at what a dour place Geneva was under Calvinism and I look at all my Calvinist friends who have no assurance that they are of the elect without having to kid themselves that they are exhibiting evidence by what they ‘do’, ‘feel’, ‘say’, or ‘think’.

  22. @TOA: Indeed, I have always loved Luther, heck I did one of my doctorates on his work and theology of the Cross! And I am an Anglican. But, I must confess I am not a “Lutheran” per se! ;) And if we follow ANY historical group itself, we will all be left cold!

    Btw, YOU are most certainly “dodging” many Texts, that are speaking about our own interior life as Christians! I have given just two, and from Paul. This has always been one of the problems of some overt classic Lutheran theology! But note, Calvin knew that both Justification & Sanctification were closely connected, though strictly speaking Justification is always first. – But see and note, 1 Cor. 6: 11!

    In closing, we must never diminish our responsibility as “Disciples” of Christ, and here indeed we always encounter the Lordship of Christ, Himself! “And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say? (Luke 6: 46) Indeed the true Christian seeks to follow and obey Christ! And though this is certainly never perfect, nor surely alone the way we achieve Christ, WE still must follow HIM! Like St. Peter, let us too “follow” Christ!

  23. Just what part of 1 Corinthians 15:22 “For as in Adam all [πάντες] die, so also in Christ all [πάντες] will be made alive.” (NASB) do the Calvinist not get? Ah, that Fr. Robert [Anglican] would see the light of his fellow Anglicans J. R. W. Stott and C. S. Lewis. :-)

  24. @James-the-lesser: I have seen the Light, and HE is Christ! Note, I am surely a “neo”-Calvinist, I hope you know the “distinction”? And there are quite better Anglicans than either Stott or Lewis, and here I am speaking of course “theologically”! ;)

    Note, try reading Austin Farrer, though not a Calvinist, neo or otherwise, he is/was a grand thinker/theologian!

  25. Fatalism: a doctrine that events are fixed in advance so that human beings are powerless to change them (from Webster’s)

    And how is Calvinism not fatalistic?? I mean you can redefine “fatalism” so that its not, but according to any generally accepted understanding of the word in philosophy Calvinism is fatalistic. It is irrelevant whether the determining force is some type of physical cause and effect or an intelligent external force.

  26. Keep working at it Robert, one of these days truth will nudge you closer to the knowledge that there is indeed a universal atonement available not just for the lucky few. :-)

  27. It simply always amazes me that people often who post, simply don’t read the original post, nor the comments, first, before they post!

    Note, “Infralapsarianism” : the theological position that God’s decree to save “follows” logically (not temporarily) the decision to create and permit the fall.

  28. @James: Note, I believe – like as John Calvin, that the Atonement, is surely Sufficient or really General for all, but it is biblically “efficient” or Efficacious, alone for the “election of grace”! Yes, this might be a bit scholastic, but none-the-less appears to be the most Biblical to my mind!

    Keep on Truck’in! ;)

  29. “I have always loved Luther…”

    I know that you do.

    I just think Calvin missed the boat a bit when it comes to the sacraments and assurance.

    I think there’s a lot more Christian freedom to be had than in Calvinism.

    Thanks. Off to work.

  30. @TOA: I am an basically an Evangelical Anglican, though I am somewhat eclectic in a few High Church kinda aspects. Such as Mary as the Theotokos! (Council of Ephesus) And I am somewhat towards Luther on the Sacraments, but I do appreciate Calvin here also! So I am NO card-carrying Calvinist for sure, but as I keep saying I am more of a “neo”-Calvinist, and always a classic Anglican with the Thirty-nine Articles. And one that certainly loves Dr. Luther! Sadly Luther is really little read these days!

  31. #10 in the original post says:
    “Calvinism is not a system that has to ignore or reinterpret passages of Scripture concerning human responsibility.”

    This may be so. But Calvinism does have to ignore or reinterpret passages of Scripture concerning Christian responsibility. In other words, even if a Calvinist can support #10 when the passages are exhortations or commands to humanity in general, a Calvinist cannot support the claim of #10 when the passages are exhortations or commands to baptized Christians.

    Think of all the passages where Christians are given responsibilities or tasks to accomplish in the course of their salvation. These are in a different category than the commands directed at everybody, for which the Calvinist will say, “We fulfill these demands through Christ.” The commands directed at Christians, already baptized, already “saved” people, are the ones harder for a Calvinist to brush away. Off the top of my head, I think of:
    –The parable of the sower.
    –The parable of the ten virgins.
    –The warnings to the churches in Revelation.
    –Paul’s stated determination to discipline himself, lest he be disqualified himself.
    –Those who have shipwrecked their faith.

    These and similar passages must be either ignored, or interpreted in light of Calvinism. And so when a Calvinist comes to one of these problem passages, the answer is “Well, you must remember that [such and such theological point].” The Scriptures end up being interpreted while presupposing Calvinism to be true, rather than the Scriptures forming the doctrine, as the claim goes.

    Now, I actually do not fault Calvinists for interpreting Scripture in light of Calvinism. (I just blame them for claiming not to.) All Scripture interpretation is accomplished according to ‘something’. The interpreter must interpret by some standard, or else not interpret.

  32. Claiming Calvinism is not those things does not make it true. You may believe whatever you like but are those beliefs justified? Calling something a myth does not make it disappear.

  33. Fr. Robert (Anglican) you posted: “I am somewhat eclectic in a few High Church kinda aspects. Such as Mary as the Theotokos! (Council of Ephesus) And I am somewhat towards Luther on the Sacraments.”

    All I have to say is “right on!” Why are we Protestants so reluctant to refer to her as the Theotokos? That’s what she did. She was also the anthropostokos, too-that is, the mother of Jesus. I am utterly appalled at the nonchalant and casual way that Evangelicals, and yes all those in-between, treat Communion. I most often get the feeling that it is a routine that most Protestants feel they must perform and the quicker they get it over with and out the door the better. If there is nothing sacred in the act whether in the wafer or wine or simply the presence of Christ then why then did Paul say,

    “For he who eats and drinks, eats and drinks judgment to himself if he does not judge the body rightly. For this reason many among you are weak and sick, and a number sleep.”(?) 1 Cor. 11:29-31) Yes, keep on trucking! :-)

  34. One other comment. Some of you neo-Calvinist had better be careful because you are going to have to change your label one of these days to ersatz Armenians of the Jacobus Arminius variety. I’m just saying. :-)

  35. @Irene: I think your confused on your #31, I don’t have the time or the space, but your idea is easily refuted, good Calvinists know that God has common grace too, as well as elective sovereign, saving grace, that indeed perseveres with God In Christ unto the end, “Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.” (Jude 24-25; note too verse 1, “To those who are called, beloved in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ.” Wow…Amazing Grace!

    This too is for you “James”! :)

  36. And yes, we “neo”-Calvinists, are still very “Calvinist”! Or what we feel is really “Calvinism”! For me, this means a Calvin-Calvinist! i.e. that follows John Calvin! ;) And for me, this is not so much the Westminster Divines, see Calvin’s own Genevan Reformers! Theodore Beza, Francis Turretin, etc.

  37. Surely Francis Turretin is himself, the master of Reformed Divinity! But he follows his Genevan Brethren, Calvin and Beza…note Beza lived to an amazing 86 years of age! Calvin died at only 56.

  38. “While there are some Calvinists who do deny God’s universal love for all man, this is certainly not a necessary or a central tenet of Calvinism. Calvinists do, however, believe that God has a particular type of love for the elect (an “electing love”), but most also believe that God loves all people (John 3:16). ”

    So, is sending rain upon the garden of a man while letting him heading to hell a mark of love?

    Why should he care about twenty years of happiness if he’s going to spend 1000000000000000000……. years of unbearable torment in hell?

    Along with Dave Hunt, I’ve the right to ask: “what love is this?”

    And what did cause the fall if libertarian free will can be ruled out?

    If everything is determined one cannot get God off the hook.

  39. “Calvinism” has a deep biblical, theological and a real heritage of & in Divinity! He who has not read Calvin’s own personal Letters, is missing a treat and a great Man of God! See, John Calvin’s Tracts And Letters, (7 Vol. Banner of Truth Trust, 2009)

  40. I’m too lazy to comment on all of the points, however:

    #1 “most also believe that God loves all people (John 3:16).” Well shock me right off the bat! You mean Calvinists understand “the world” in John 3:16 as meaning “all people” after all? I’ll try to take your word for it, while suggesting you re-think limited atonement.

    #2 Supra or Infra doesn’t really seem to make much difference as the non-elect are created and condemned with no possibility of salvation either way. I wonder if Infras aren’t just Supras who flinch.

    #4 & #12 Well, no, that’s not necessarily the definition of fatalism either. Whether one views events as fixed in advance, with human choice making no difference, by the will of God or by impersonal force one is effectively fatalistic. Maybe the Calvinists who lean toward more rather than less meticulous control by God are simply the more logically consistent ones – though I will happily agree more with the “less meticulous” side.

    #10 – Well at some points they kinda do need to.

  41. “For thus God loved the world (the kosmos= the world as created, ordered and arranged), that the Son, the Unique & Only One, He gave, that everyone believing in Him may not perish but have Life Eternal.” (John 3: 16, Lit. trans)

  42. But “believing in Him” is not a human choice by itself, but a gift to him from a Sovereign Loving God, (Eph. 2: 8-9-10). Indeed any way ya slice it, GOD Is the Savior!

  43. This must be the fr. Robert thread

  44. It’s an open blog mate, hack-way with the rest of us! Note, the subject matter is a wee bit close to me heart! ;)

    And btw david, if ya listen? You just might learn something! ;)

  45. As usual Robert you are an arrogant Calvinist that makes me want nothing to do with your Christian God.

  46. And I know who this “Margaret” is, also! The one that cannot believe really anything positive! And I say this sadly, for far too many people have sought to placate your unbelief! And this is surely not really personal, but biblical and theological! And the problem is really between you and God!

  47. John 3:16 was the verse selected to support the claim that Calvinism does not deny God’s love for all people. If the world God loves in John 3:16 is “the world as created, ordered and arranged” rather than people in particular then apparently most Calvinists have missed the point as badly as the rest of us. Or else the claim made on their behalf in “Myth” #1 above is a false one.

  48. Indeed I for one don’t believe God loves all men or people in the same way! This is not about the quality of the Atonement, as I have written I believe as Calvin did, that the Atonement or Death of Christ has a general nature. But, it’s sufficiency is not the same as its efficacy! So God’s has a common grace, and an elective grace, in John 3: 16 the elective is seen in the “whosoever” or really just “everyone believing”! For surely, some are going to “perish”!

    In Romans 9: 11 surely comes into play here! As too the rest of the chapter, noting especially Romans 9: 15 thru 24, and most certainly the character and man of Pharaoh verse 17! But again Romans 9: 11 is central in this whole chapter! The latter part of the chapter deals with the Nation of Israel 27-33. But the “sumblingstone and rock of offense” is always going to be Christ! (Chapter 10)

  49. God ‘orders’ and ‘controls’ all things, but do not blame Him when things go exactly according to His plan because sinful people do sinful things. But don’t sinful people do the sinful things that God has ‘ordered,’ ‘planned,’ and ‘directed’? ‘Well, yes,’ says the Calvinist, ‘but God is still not to blame.’ Why? ‘Because we said so, and that settles it!’ Oh, I see

  50. But can John 3:16 be used to demonstrate that God loves anyone, elect or otherwise? If not, it doesn’t support the point Patton was trying to make. Of course neither does it support the point if it can only be used to demonstrate that God loves the elect.


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    […] 12 Myths about Calvinism – 12. Calvinists do not necessarily believe that God predestines (wills) everything, including the color of socks I chose this morning.  There is a spectrum to belief about God’s sovereignty in Calvinism. The one thing that unites all Calvinists is their belief in God’s sovereign choice to elect some people to salvation and not others. However, Calvinists differ concerning God’s involvement in other areas (for more on this, see here). Some Calvinists believe in what might be called “meticulous sovereignty”, where God has not only predestined people to salvation, but also he has predestined everything that occurs. As the old saying goes: “There is not a maverick molecule in the universe.” However, most Calvinists believe in what might be called “providential sovereignty.” Here, Calvinists would distinguish between God’s permissive will and his sovereign will. In his permissive will, many things happen that he permits, but is not necessarily bringing about as the first cause. In his sovereign will, many things happen because of his direct intervention (for more on this, see here). – C Michael Patton […]

  11. In Case You Missed It… (8/10/13) | - August 10, 2013

    […] Twelve Myths About Calvinism – pretty self-explanatory. […]

  12. The Three Things You Need to Read this Week (08/10/13) | Apologetics Forum - August 10, 2013

    […] Twelve Myths about Calvinism by C. Michael Patton.  Credo House also house a good article on the Twelve Myths about […]

  13. Best of My Reading List Today – Twelve Myths About Calvinism | Speaking Out - August 11, 2013

    […] Check out the whole post at Parchment and Pen […]

  14. Grace Crossing Church | Twelve Myths About Calvinism And Arminianism - August 12, 2013

    […] Twelve Myths About Calvinism […]

  15. Sola Wednesday: 8/14/2013 | Going to Damascus - August 14, 2013

    […] 1) Twelve Myths About Calvinism […]

  16. Around the Blogosphere | resolved to reason - August 19, 2013

    […] at Credo House Ministries, C. Michael Patton writes regarding ‘Twelve Myths About Calvanism‘. I was especially delighted to see this as number […]

  17. C. Michael Patton – Twelve Myths About Calvinism » Christian Apologetics & Intelligence Ministry - August 25, 2013

    […] Continue Reading […]

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