Friday, November 21, 2008

This Week in Blogworld 11/21

Timmy Brister considers the irony (?) of Paul Washer preaching at FBC Woodstock only a couple weeks after the John 3:16 Conference.

Calvinists are often considered to hold to their particular soteriology because of "rational reasons", Michael Patton challenges this with Calvinism is the Least Rational Option.

John Piper tells us how to approach God when feeling rotten.

Colin Adams gives us 10 Ways to Ruin a Day Off. I think I have broken most of those--I wonder if the list is different for those in vocational ministry?

You can download Mark Driscoll's book Porn-Again Christian for free.

How can a miscarriage be used by God to rip idolatry out of our hearts? Read here.

Bob Kauflin Encourages Spontaniety with our worship at church.

CJ continues his series on procrastination.

Thabiti asks Do You Enjoy Your Church Gatherings?

Mama Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Pastor's:

(HT: Thabiti)


  1. I didn't think Patton's analysis was all that helpful, really. He is really being polemical with the Arminian stuff - no Arminian is going to say that logic precedes exegesis. They are going to say that they have exegetical reasons for their stance, but ALSO find the Calvinistic stance untenable b/c of its logical deficiency (not to mention the fact that they think Calvinism has moral deficiency in that it attributes all sin to God's decision).

    So, I would have said this on his page, but he had 102 comments and no doubt mine would have got lost in the shuffle. So since I found the link to him on your post, I thought I'd let you know I think he was being terribly unfair.

    I don't know why, but for some reason when someone disagrees with 'my' stance on this issue (no matter the side), they seem to always assume the other one is buying into a theological of logical system prior to the reading of the text. Why can't we just say that we have DIFFERENT understandings of the text itself. We need not always accuse one another of being biblically unfaithful. Wrong...maybe. Unfaithful...probably not. I'm not a Calvinist, so I think Calvnism is wrong. But I do not accuse my many Calvinist friends of being unfaithful to the text b/c I know their hearts are in the right place. I fear we cannot move beyond where we are in this discussion until we stop dealing in polemics and paper-tigers.

  2. Tom,

    Thanks for your comments...they are always thoughtful as well as welcome. I hope all is going well with you and your family.

    A couple of points in response:

    1) I agree that Patton edges on being too polemical at times. But as I read it, I didn't sense it nearly as strong as it seems you are.

    2) I understand that few (probably as you assert none) Arminian's (or even Semi-Pelagian's for that matter) would assert that logic precedes exegesis. But that's really not what Patton is addressing--He is claiming that by the Arminian's theological system this is what he is doing.

    3) Again, though, I think he could have stated it in a little better terms...and I agree with you that calling into question someone's interpretive integrity is a pretty serious charge--and if you make such a claim should go to quite a few pains to prove such a charge.

    4) Lastly, I appreciate your final paragraph. I would wish that Calvinist, Arminians, Amyraldians, etc. would be far less polemical and deal with things in a more fraternal way.

    What makes it really difficult though is when your view of soteriology is attacked as Calvinism often is in the SBC. (Again I understand that Calvinists can be just as crude to Arminians). Calvinists and Arminians both need to rise above the sins against us and not attack unfair speculation with more unfair speculation. I'm just waiting for that day when there are no Calvinists or Arminians (at least in label) but we are all worshipping Jesus as he is fully known.

  3. Thanks for the response, Mike. I appreciate your graciousness.

    per #2 - I understand that that's what Patton is doing - I just think it's underhanded. That is, if no Arminian is going to say it, then he needs to, instead of arguing for what he thinks they're doing, he needs to argue with them about their view of certain texts.

    I say this, primarily, b/c I think philosophy guides both sides of this discussion to some degree. Scripture first, then making it logically fit into a system. That's how everyone on this topic works - whether they recognize it or not.

    So, I guess I'm saying I still don't think the accusation is fair - I could turn it around and make the same claim about him, but he wouldn't find it fair either. So, I think he should be more careful.

    per #3 - I agree and thank you for affirming my comment.

    per your last paragraph - that's really interesting to me. b/c as an Arminian I am finding it increasingly difficult to operate within the SBC. It seems to me that everyone's gone Calvinist. There are a few Arminians left (and most of them are ignorant of the issues, as you've pointed out), but there are few genuine and thoughtful Arminians in the SBC (Dr. Lonnie Nelson is one). So, I don't know if I can stay SBC much longer. B/c the abuse you take from some for being Calvinist is the abuse I take from some for being Arminian. It seems both sides are acting really ungodly in this.

    Cheers to you my friend. I hope you had a good Thanksgiving.



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