One point Calvanist?

Posted: April 5, 2010 by doulos tou Theou in Christian Theology, Christianity, Reformed Theology

Some have %-points of Calvinism and you might hear people say, ” I’m a 3pont, 4point, 5point Calvinist.

Packer here I think is trying to show us the One thought that can under-gird “how and why and who” you believe does ministry.

What do I mean by that you might ask. Thank you for asking.

First the “who” is the Holy Spirit working in man to accomplish the seeing & Glorifying of Jesus.

The “how” is by the Grace and Mercy of God through the redemptive work of the Christ on the cross accomplishing God’s plan of salvation.

The “why” is because  God has accomplished something at the Cross with the death of Jesus for the salvation of sinners (you and me) and God gets all the Glory.

Now that should free you and give you confidence to share the Gospel with everyone everywhere.

J.I.  Packer said, “The very act of setting out Calvinistic soteriology [the doctrine of salvation] in the form of five distinct points (a number due, as we saw, merely to the fact that there were five Arminian points for the Synod of Dort to answer) tends to obscure the organic character of Calvinistic thought on this subject. For the five points, though separately stated, are inseparable. They hang together; you cannot reject one without rejecting them all, at least in the sense in which the Synod meant them. For to Calvinism there is really only one point to be made in the field of soteriology: the point that God saves sinners.

“God – the Triune Jehovah, Father, Son and Spirit; three Persons working together in sovereign wisdom, power and love to achieve the salvation of a chosen people, the Father electing, the Son fulfilling the Father’s will by redeeming, the Spirit executing the purpose of Father and Son by renewing.

“Saves – does everything, first to last, that is involved in bringing man from death in sin to life in glory: plans, achieves and communicates redemption, calls and keeps, justifies, sanctifies, glorifies.

“Sinners – men as God finds them, guilty, vile, helpless, powerless, unable to lift a finger to do God’s will or better their spiritual lot. God saves sinners – and the force of this confession may not be weakened by disrupting the unity of the work of the Trinity, or by dividing the achievement of salvation between God and man and making the decisive part man’s own, or by soft-pedaling the sinner’s inability so as to allow him to share the praise of his salvation with his Savior. This is the one point of Calvinistic soteriology which the “five points” are concerned to establish and Arminianism in all its forms to deny: namely, that sinners to not save themselves in any sense at all, but that salvation, first and last, whole and entire, past, present and future, is of the Lord, to whom be glory for ever; amen.”

J.I. Packer, “Introductory Essay,” in The Death of Death in the Death of Christ, by John Owen (London: Banner of Truth, 1959) 4-5.

Comments
  1. […] Excerpt from J.I. Packer, “Introductory Essay,” in The Death of Death in the Death of Christ, by John Owen (London: Banner of Truth, 1959)    HT Awakening Grace […]

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