We who preach the gospel must not think of ourselves as public relations agents sent to establish good will between Christ and the world. We must not imagine ourselves commissioned to make Christ acceptable to big business, the press, the world of sports or modern education. We are not diplomats but prophets, and our message is not a compromise but an ultimatum. A.W. Tozer
Therefore let God-inspired Scripture decide between us; and on whichever side be found doctrines in harmony with the word of God, in favor of that side will be cast the vote of truth. --Basil of Caesarea
Once you learn to discern, there's no going back. You will begin to spot the lie everywhere it appears.

I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service. 1 Timothy 1:12

Friday, August 15, 2014

Stimulating Thoughts

I just finished the book, “An A - Z of Christian Truth and Experience,” by J. Graham Miller.  It was given to me by a friend, and is a collection of quotations from various well-known Christians throughout history.  The book is published by “The Banner of Truth Trust,” which publishes Calvinist books.  That explains why probably half of the citations in the book are from Calvin himself.

Except for ONE citation from Calvin below, I had no use for things by Calvin, because they were all heavily TULIPed.  However, I think the rest of the citations below will stimulate thinking.  The one by Calvin I have to post to show the absurdity of some of his teachings!

John Calvin stated:  “The offspring of believers are born holy because their children, while yet in the womb, are included in the covenant of eternal life . . .  Nor are they admitted into the Church by baptism on any other ground than that they belonged to the body of Christ before they were born.”

Really?  Just because a child’s parents are Christians the child is thereby also a Christian?  So if that child grows up and chooses “the dark side” and lives a life of evil and wicked deeds and rejects God, he is still saved because his parents were?!?!  Can anyone show me this from Scripture?

Okay, now that I had my poke at Calvinists, let’s look at some thought-provoking citations.

“The more carnal and worldly a man is the more he has to bring up against the Word of God.”
Martin Luther

“Whatever contradicts the Word of God should be instantly resisted as diabolical.”
John Bunyan

“The nature of Christianity [is] conformity with Christ and . . . disconformity with the world.”
Robert Leighton

“The great source of error in religious matters is that men do not fully and honestly take the Word of God as their rule and standard.”
William Cunningham

“The family is the primary institution of God for killing the natural self-seeking of the individual.”
James Candlish.

“Sir, you often told me of Christ and salvation: why did you not oftener remind me of hell and danger?”
A hearer, to John Newton

“Love fears and is concerned for the beloved.  What is not loved is easily neglected.”
Martin Luther

“The devil is but God’s master fencer to teach us to handle our weapons.”
Samuel Rutherford

“It is dangerous to gather flowers that grow on the banks of the pit of hell.  They who play with the devil’s rattles will be brought by degrees to wield his sword.”
Thomas Fuller

And, no, I’m not keeping the book.


Anonymous said...

Calvin's statement was way off the mark and utterly unscriptural. Therefore, Miller's inclusion of Calvin's statement in his book on "Christian Truth" was itself an erroneous decision.

I also disagree with Candlish's statement. The Holy Spirit is the primary institution of God for killing the natural self-seeking of the individual, not the family. Plenty of people, sadly including Christians, have children and still are wholly self-centered and self-seeking as parents.

Family should be an institution of self-sacrificial love, but it often is not.

Appreciated Bunyan, Leighton, and Cunningham's remarks.


Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Hi Carolyn,

Well, the whole book was full of false teachings by Calvin, but it was a Calvinist publication, after all.

I think the context of Candlish's quote is the point - it was a comment in regards to the family. And in that regard, usually when people have a family, their self-centeredness has to give way. There are exceptions, of course, especially in our decaying society.

ali said...

Apparently both Jonathan winters and robin Winters could agree with Thomas Fuller statement, receiving their talent from demonic influences. Grieves my heart that tens of thousands, including the POTUS and media have paid their respects while allowing Christian Pastor Seaad Abodni in Iran and Marine Corp soldier Andrew both to rot in prison and makes no attempts to intervene - indeed we live in very troubling times.

Ralph M. Petersen-Always Right; Sometimes Wrong! said...

I'm sure Calvin was always right except when he was wrong; just like every theologian and preacher I have ever known.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Calvin was wrong every time he preached TULIPs