Thursday, June 22, 2006

Can Calvinists and Arminians Be Together for the Gospel?

Mark Dever thinks these theological differences are less important than how we put our theology into practice.
Consider what you and I will do to the Gospel message in our churches if we continue to change the "presentation" of the Gospel until we begin to get a response.

Pursue faithfulness and relevance. Know that the Gospel is always relevant. NEVER assume the Gospel.
I think there's certainly truth in his observations, but I'm wondering if the Arminian view of God is so fatally flawed that it invariably affects the presentation. On the other hand, I've heard professed anti-Calvinists preach (apparently by accident [Or should I say "by providence"?]) thoroughly God-centered evangelistic messages.

What do you think?

2 comments:

tjp said...

Ben,

You ask, "Can Calvinists and Arminians Be Together for the Gospel?"

The quick answer is, no.

Historically, Calvinists have never dwelt peaceably with those who reject the hyper-schema of predestinarian theology.

In this matter Cals are much like secondary separationists; that is, they adopt an all or nothing attitude.

It makes for a pretty sound bite for Mohler and Patterson to talk about unity and cooperation, but there is neither unity nor cooperation. Oil and water don't mix.

Prepare for the coming brawl.

(See my recent blog for lots of anti-Calvinist comments: Liver-and-Onions.blogspot.com)

Keith said...

Ben,

I'd say that the quick answer is yes, of course. The reformed are catholic -- all whose faith is in Christ are brothers.

One example: Francis Schaeffer was a calvinist who worked with Jerry Falwell for goodness sakes.

Of course there will be struggles -- humans always find a way to create struggles. And, sometimes there will be division (see Wesley and Whitefield).

But, the question was CAN they work together not WILL they always.

Keith