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Author Topic: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?  (Read 13760 times)

Reformer

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #30 on: April 24, 2012, 01:55:24 AM »
it could mean anything including simply a Christian.

 I'm an evangelist!  :)


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I looked it up and it is a Greek word which means the proclamation of the good news of salvation to lost men.

That could also be a politician at election time.  ...just kidding!  :P


Rich Aikers

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #31 on: April 24, 2012, 12:43:14 PM »
I looked it up and it is a Greek word which means the proclamation of the good news of salvation to lost men.

That could also be a politician at election time.  ...just kidding!  :P

You mean Politicians can't save us? They Lie?   ;)


Reggie Matthews

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #32 on: April 24, 2012, 02:07:26 PM »

On the other hand, those of us of the Reformed faith in the doctrines of Grace, believe God commands evangelism all throughout the bible.

Mark 16:15
 "And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature."


Now I'm confused. Are you separating Calvinists from Reformed Theologians?  Aren't they one and the same?

"Where the word of a king is, there is power: and who may say unto him, What doest thou?" -Ecclesiastes 8:4

billnjune

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #33 on: April 24, 2012, 04:44:08 PM »

Now I'm confused. Are you separating Calvinists from Reformed Theologians?  Aren't they one and the same?

These terms are loosely used. 

To say that you are Reformed means that your heritage was from the reformation or the break off from the Catholic Church.

And to say that you are Calvinistic means that you follow the teachings of John Calvin.

Of course I donít fell that I am a break off of the Catholic Church nor do I follow Calvin, but I guess that we need a word to define us, so I often use the word Sovereign-Gracer. 

The disciples and others before 1000 AD were neither Reformed nor Calvinistic but they did believe in the Sovereignty of God and the doctrines of Grace, which separates them from the Arminians or the Free-Willers.

Presbyterians are clearly Reformed, but I am Reformed Baptist and I do not claim anything to do with the Reformation nor the Catholic Church.  NO, not Reformed Baptist but I should say Sovereign-Grace Baptist :)

Really it is no big deal.  We just need a term to clearly define ourselves.

Bill
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Reformer

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #34 on: April 25, 2012, 02:57:06 AM »

On the other hand, those of us of the Reformed faith in the doctrines of Grace, believe God commands evangelism all throughout the bible.

Mark 16:15
 "And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature."


Now I'm confused. Are you separating Calvinists from Reformed Theologians?  Aren't they one and the same?


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Now I'm confused. Are you separating Calvinists from Reformed Theologians?

I don't know if he is, but I am.

Those who find some satisfaction in being called Calvinists or Puritans tend to have a certain "grandfathered in" bunker mentality and mindset of arrogance, a little conceit and most of all smugness. That's my opinion! Reformed theologians by contrast are more humble, less resistant to supporting scriptures, and tend not to have that "high and mighty elitist opinion" of themselves that Calvinists/Puritans do.

Lu 16:15 And he said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God.


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   Aren't they one and the same?

Well, I'll catch heat for saying this I'm sure, but No, not really. At least, not in my mind, which is the only one I've got ;)

We're all somewhat vain, but Calvinists/Puritans are "generally" more vain, glory in their own knowledge and are decidedly more proud of being Calvinists/Puritans than honored to be servants and evangelists of God. No, you won't find many Calvinist Evangelists IMHO! While Reformed theologians tend to have an open mind to scripture, glory more in the truth of the Bible itself than election, and consider it a privilege to serve and spread soteriology.

I'm speaking in general, but Calvinists/Puritans tend to focus more on presuming to explain the unexplanable, superlatives, regurgitating other Calvinist/Puritan author's thoughts, and clinging to traditional creeds and such over a strict biblical authority and interpretation. While most Reformed theologians will lean more upon the bible interpreting itself, and a strict scripture alone system that might even contradict the creeds (Gasp!!!). When I say that, I mean actual Sola Scriptura as opposed to the lip service of Calvinist/Puritans. Reformed theologians lean less upon the works of others and more upon "the word" itself.

Moreover, to some degree Calvinists/Puritans often neglect the great commission of evangelism in favor of personal growth through social and intellectual edification, with a bent towards building from where others have already laid brick, rather than from the foundation up or strictly from the bible. Reformed theologians tend more towards growing not through tradition or joying in worshiping John Calvin and other Reformed church fathers or  intellectual stimulation, but in the grace of God, with more compassion, service and the charity more in line with the good Samaritan

No, I wouldn't say they are one and the same, but I'm sure a host of others will :)


James Heckman

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #35 on: April 25, 2012, 09:14:36 AM »
I think you're being really unfair. Who exactly do you consider a Calvinist and who Reformed? Wasn't Spurgeon a Calvinist?

billnjune

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #36 on: April 25, 2012, 09:43:21 PM »

Bill on his Soapbox

I think you're being really unfair. Who exactly do you consider a Calvinist and who Reformed? Wasn't Spurgeon a Calvinist?

James,

You are correct and we are just having a technical frenzy with the definition of words.

The everyday usage of Calvinism and Reformed is that they hold to the 5 points of Calvin or the TULIP. 

The technical meaning of Calvinism is to be a follower of Calvin and I donít think that too many fall into that category.

The technical meaning of Reformed is that your heritage was derived from the reformation movement.  The word Reformed Baptist is really a contradiction of terms, but everyone knows what is meant when you say Reformed Baptist, meaning that it is a Baptist that holds to the 5 points of Calvin. 
   
The strange thing is that all Baptist prior to about 1800 were 5 point Calvinistic.  The problem lies in that the Baptist church has become so apostate, that very few understand that today.  There is a group of Baptist called the founders (www.founders.org ) with the goal of bringing the SBC back to its roots.

Sorry for the off-topic chatter
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James Heckman

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #37 on: December 29, 2012, 04:26:04 PM »

James,

You are correct and we are just having a technical frenzy with the definition of words.

The everyday usage of Calvinism and Reformed is that they hold to the 5 points of Calvin or the TULIP. 

The technical meaning of Calvinism is to be a follower of Calvin and I donít think that too many fall into that category.

Don't get Tony Warren started again :)



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The strange thing is that all Baptist prior to about 1800 were 5 point Calvinistic.  The problem lies in that the Baptist church has become so apostate, that very few understand that today.

That's a very unfair comment.

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There is a group of Baptist called the founders (www.founders.org ) with the goal of bringing the SBC back to its roots.


My point exactly.

R. Anspach

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #38 on: March 27, 2016, 11:23:59 AM »
I have two questions concerning Reformed Theology. The first is if election precludes evangelism? In other words, if God's people are already chosen, why would anyone have to go out and be fishers of men? Because if election is true, they're going to be saved anyway. The second question, is election based upon God's foreknowledge that certain individuals will come to faith in Christ, or is it based upon Godís sovereign choice to save them? Different Christians have different views of election.
"But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith." Galatians 3:11

Tony Warren

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #39 on: March 28, 2016, 06:07:43 PM »
>>>
I have two questions concerning Reformed Theology. The first is if election precludes evangelism? In other words, if God's people are already chosen, why would anyone have to go out and be fishers of men? Because if election is true, they're going to be saved anyway.
<<<

It's "what" they are chosen to. They're chosen vessels used of God to accomplish His glorious salvation plan in this world, and in the world to come everlasting life. Election and evangelism are not mutually exclusive. They go hand in hand just like faith and our fruits. Evangelism is actually the product of election. In other words, who would evangelize if not for the Spirit of God working within them to bring forth that spirituaal fruit? No one, not one would evangelize if not chosen (elect).

Psalms 14:2-3
  • "The LORD looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God.
  • They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one."

So then none would do good and obey God to go forth and evangelize without election, which is God choosing them unto this glorious work. It is God who moves Peter, Paul, you and I to plant the seeds of the gospel, and it is God who brings forth the increase or growth of that planting. We are but vessels God uses to get His work done. So the reason we need to evangelize is because we are led by the Spirit to joy in the obedience of Christ in doing the will of God.

1st Peter 1:12
  • "Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into."

Without this joy in well doing, evangelism, or preaching the gospel, where is the evidence that we are even truly saved?? His divine plan is that we go to the ends of the earth preaching the gospel as chosen vessels of His salvation to the whole world. Our election (being chosen) of God doesn't make His command to us to preach the gospel to all creatures null and void. Truly, it assures it. And those who have no desire unto the gospel, should endeavor to make their calling and election sure.


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>>>
The second question, is election based upon God's foreknowledge that certain individuals will come to faith in Christ, or is it based upon Godís sovereign choice to save them? Different Christians have different views of election.
<<<

Of course, but there is only "one" correct view of election, and that is God's sovereign right to choose whomever He wants, for any reason He wants, without man questioning its propriety or His righteous conduct or fairness in doing so.

Romans 9:19-21
  • "Thou wilt say then unto me, Why doth he yet find fault? For who hath resisted his will?
  • Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?
  • Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?"

For some to claim God would be unfair to choose/elect anyone without some foreknowledge of their own choice to choose Him, is declaring God cannot be sovereign. It is man deciding God has to choose those who choose Him, rather than have mercy on whomever He wants. And that is exactly the objection God is anticipating in Romans 9 in saying, who are you to argue with me about my judgments concerning election. I will have mercy on whoever I want. Unfortunately, Man just doesn't get it. It seems they refuse to understand what Sovereignty actually means.

Ephesians 1:4-6
  • "According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
  • Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
  • To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved."

That says God He has chosen us that we should be holy, not because he saw that we were or would be holy. Clearly, election is not based on His foreknowledge that we would be good and obedient (God says none are), but "so that" we would come to Christ and do good and be obedient.

John 6:44
  • "No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day."

So then, how would God have by forelknowledge seen we would come to Him or seen we would do good when His holy word clearly teaches that no one was or could be gooid (we were all in bondage or slavery to sin) and no one can come to Him unless first drawn of God?

Your two questions are good and topical questions, but the fact is, without election there is no such thing as effective evangelism. It would be just words spoken in the wind. Predestination that some would hear is what makes evangelism effective. Without the predetermined action of God there are none that would come to Christ, none who would do good, none that would listen to the gospel unto salvation, no not one. The great commission would be a dismal failure and all would all be left dead in their sins. So when people say they don't believe in election or predestination, what they are "really" saying is that they don't believe that God is truly sovereign. They are saying that He gives man control over who God can and cannot have mercy on. There's no other way to put it and be accurate. Either God is sovereign in salvation or he is at the mercy of man accepting it.


"nosce te ipsum"
 
Peace,
Tony Warren
"I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah. -Psalms 32:5"

Trevor

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #40 on: March 29, 2016, 11:02:26 AM »
Welcome R. Anspach,
The idea that unconditional election hinders evangelism and church mission is erroneous. It's based on the false premise that if we cannot change anyone's heart, why should anyone evangelize? The obvious answer is, "because Christ told us to go out and evangelize all the nations (Mat. 28:18-20), and as faithful Christians how could we refuse to obey? Moreover, as Tony already said, without God's unconditional election of individuals, evangelism would be utterly useless. It only works because God has ordained it to work on those He has chosen and called out of the darkness of the world.

"But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light:" I Peter 2:9

Chosen means elected. The Bible makes it perfectly clear that even though God will certainly call and renew all his elect from every nation, he has designed to do so through the proclamation of the gospel (Rom. 10:13-17) through Christians. By this we know that the doctrine of God's sovereign election, which overcomes the impossible barriers such as bondage to sin where no one would seek God, is the most necessary footing for evangelism.
A Mind For Truth
Dr. C. Trevor Bavinck
New York, NY

R. Anspach

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #41 on: March 31, 2016, 01:20:43 AM »
Thank you Trevor and Tony for those insights. I have in the past struggled with the idea of Godís sovereignty, election and evangelism because a lot of people think, and I had been taught, that it makes the activity of evangelism worthless or useless. I think the church should do a better job of explaining it because many people believe one contradicts the other. Can anyone explain this passage.

How, then, can [people] call on the one they have not believed in? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard. And how are they to hear without someone preaching. And how are they to preach unless they are sent? (Rom. 10:14ó15)

Many say that this teaches that without evangelism, no one would be saved, and tat precludes election. Because if no one is saved if people don't preach, how can there be any predestination?
"But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith." Galatians 3:11

Dan

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #42 on: April 02, 2016, 07:45:05 AM »
What is evangelism anyway? Reformed people don't evangelize, evidenced by this dead forum. Christ centered Christians evangelize because they don't presume predestination, they work.

Mark 13:34
"it is as a man gone out of the country, having left his house and given to his bondmen the authority, and to each one his work, and commanded the doorkeeper that he should watch".

God gave each to watch and work, not to watch only. The Reformed camp gave the latter.


Tony Warren

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #43 on: April 03, 2016, 01:28:18 AM »
>>>
What is evangelism anyway?
<<<

Evangelism is Christians going forth preaching the gospel or good news of salvation in Christ Jesus.  The word comes from the Greek [euaggelion], composed of [eu] meaning good and [aggelion], meaning message. It's the gospel, the good news or message of Christ--and it is preached and believed through the Holy Spirit. Efficacious by His works, not ous.

1st Peter 1:12
  • "Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into."

The gospel or good message was and is accompanied by the power and influences of the Holy Spirit bearing witness to those truths to the heart, and confirming them in the saints. Evangelism is not a product of man, but of God who gives ears to hear the word and eyes to see the signs. Without which, not one would be saved, no not one.


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Reformed people don't evangelize, evidenced by this dead forum.
<<<

This dead forum notwithstanding, the Reformed faith and evangelism go hand in hand. I'll grant you that some people who call themselves Christian and take the moniker of Reformed have a tradition of not evangelizing. However, to say Reformed Christians don't evangelize is like saying Baptist Christians don't baptize. Evangelism is an integral part of Reformed theology and always has been. If they didn't evangelize, you wouldn't have all the Reformed preachers, books, writings and mission papers concerning Christ and the gospel message. So that's a very uniformed comment. Knowing that we are elect and predestinated does not equate to "not" performing the work of an evangelist.

2nd Timothy 4:5
  • "But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry."

Do some self-proclaimed calvinists not make full use of their ministry? Of course. But that has nothing to do with Reformed Theology, that has to do with spirit, traditions, motivation, cliques, indolence and world-centered individuals. Moreover it is present in any and all sects and camps of Christianity. It's not exclusive to Reformed Theology.


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>>>
Christ centered Christians evangelize because they don't presume predestination, they work.
<<<

True Christ centered Christians are endowed with charity [agape], the love which is selfless. They evangelize because God loves them, and so they don't presume that "they can work" apart from Christ's Spirit moving them. Rather that Christ works within them that their will is to do God's good pleasure. Now that's truly Christ-centered, as opposed to giving lip service to being all about Christ. Grace=Christ in us.

Philippiams 2:13
  • "For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure."

Because we actually have faith in and believe the word of God, we know that the very disposition to work to His glory, as well as every act of our obedience, comes from His Spiritual influence and agency. We don't presume we can be or do good apart from His sovereign working. For the record, predestination is not a presumption or belief supported by probability as you suppose. It's a biblical fact to anyone having faith in the authority of the Bible. And it was according to His will, not ours. That's what a truly sovereign God is, rather than a God that leaves Himself dependent upon us to do His will on our own.

Ephesians 1:5
  • "Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,"

We were predestinated through Christ, not through our foreseen actions, and it was according to His will rather than our own merit. Just another Biblical exposition of the cause and eternal election, by which God is said to have chosen us through Christ,


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Mark 13:34
"it is as a man gone out of the country, having left his house and given to his bondmen the authority, and to each one his work, and commanded the doorkeeper that he should watch".
<<<

Mark 13:34
  • "For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch."

This represents Christ as ascending into heaven and assigning His servants (the church) their duties without telling them when He would return. Therefore they are to watch! What you fail to grasp is that His kingdom was not entrusted to them without the work of the Spirit of truth and the power to accomplish the tasks that He entrusted to them. That may be your logical conclusion, but it is a fallacy.

John 15:26
  • "But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:"
John 16:13
  • "Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come."
Acts 1:8-9
  • "But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
  • And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight."

When the Son of man went away to His far journey and entrusted His servants with the work of His house, it was not without power to accomplish it--indeed, it could only be accomplished through this power. So when you say work, we say through the power of Christ, not ourselves.


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God gave each to watch and work, not to watch only. The Reformed camp gave the latter.
<<<

The debate is not that God gave His servants to work (we all agree on that), but how that work gets accomplished. Are we ordained vessels chosen by the will of God through the power of the Holy Spirit to work, or are we working because we have free will and we have freely chosen to do so? That's the real difference between Reformed Theology (Biblical Reformed Theology) and the theologies of men masquerading as Christian. True grace of God versus our pseudo-christian corrupt works. Are we truly Christ centered, or is that merely lip service?

1st Corinthians 15:10
  • "But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me."

Reformed Theology versus Free will theology. Was it I who worked or was it the grace of God that was effectual in moving me to work? Or to put it another way, is the word of God my authority, or are our doctrines built upon manipulating Scriptures or the words of men? Scriptures reveals God's grace was the sole cause of the Apostle's marvelous conversion and subsequent works, and so it is with us today. We watch and work "only" because of our new birth wherein we have the Spirit of Christ. Not of our own works, lest any man can boast.


"nosce te ipsum"
 
Peace,
Tony Warren
"I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah. -Psalms 32:5"

Anne

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Re: Does Election Preclude Evangelism?
« Reply #44 on: April 04, 2016, 08:48:22 PM »
What is evangelism anyway? Reformed people don't evangelize

Really? I guess all the Reformed missions should just shut down then.  )thinker(

 


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