My pastor friend Michael at Oak Leaf has broken his rule about commenting on critical web sites about his church. He has been very nice in his responses, but the Calvinist of the world are uniting against him. I am no theological expert by far… but there are some things that these guys are saying that absolutely scare me. I just got finished reading Romans not to long ago (I wish I would have been to the mens crack of dawn bible study).
9That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. 11As the Scripture says, “Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame.”[e] 12For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”[f]
14How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? 15And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!
If you boil down what some of these Calvinist are saying… they are saying that God is really mean! They say he has already selected an elect group of people that get to go to heaven, and then all the other people he has chosen for them to go to hell. I’m sorry… but I just don’t see how if anyone can call on the name of the Lord and be saved, then have problems understanding that. Anybody can receive a new heart by accepting Christ as savior and making him Lord of their life.
I am not a theologian – so I might be wrong. I just feel that fighting over if somebody was actually saved or not is a waste of our energy. I am afraid that many of these guys need to examine themselves. I am afraid they are calling out Michael because they are jealous of his ministry at Oakleaf growing while their elect flock is dying out. I don’t know these guys hearts so I can’t tell. They might really think they are ridding the world of false doctrine. I don’t mean to come off mean, but this has just been a trend that has been disturbing me lately. I could go on more and more about Puritan reading (Anybody heard of the Salem Witch trials?) and things like that, but I really don’t think this is the place. I am no expert so what I say is purely opinion. I think I am going to have to put one of those disclaimers on my blog saying “Any opinions, conclusions or hints of wisdom expressed on this site do not necessarily reflect the views of ______________, or any of the staff members.”