Today’s blog is more on the personal side. It is an observation stemming from a post bible study conversation with a brother. After this study, a brother from a Reformed Church said to me, are you a Calvinist? I asked why he would say that. He said because I gave a Calvinistic explanation for some verses that clearly spoke of God’s sovereignty in salvation. I said,”Really? So, if I say what the texts of Scripture says when it clearly speaks of God’s sovereignty, that makes me a Calvinist? Really?”
Amazingly, another brother from an Arminian background came up to me after another study that clearly spoke of human responsibility to choose this day whom you will serve and said, Pastor Ray, you are an Arminian, aren’t you. I said to him, “Really?”
Since when are the Scriptures the personal possession of either Calvinists or Arminians? No denomination or system of theology can franchise the Holy Scriptures, any more than any denomination or system of theology can claim sole ownership of God. Unless you are a cult! But that is another blog for another day. Christ didn’t die on the cross to make us Calvinists, or Arminians, or Koinonians, or Baptists. He died on the cross to pay the debt of our sin, and make us His witnesses in a fallen and broken world. He died that we might be Christians. He died that we might be followers of Christ, not men, nor any particular systems of theology. And I am not advocating loose or heretical doctrine. Christians are those who are chosen by God. Redeemed by Jesus. Sealed with His Spirit. They repent of their sin and confess Jesus Christ as Lord. Christians are those who love Christ, adore The Father and seek to live a holy life in the power of God’s Spirit.
Now do not get me wrong. I have dear friends who are Calvinists, a Baptists, Arminians..the whole nine yards!! Love ’em with all of my heart. But when I “enter” the glory and splendor of the heavenly scene, whether it be Isaiah 6 or Revelation 4 and 5, I’m not hearing the praises or worship of Calvinists or Arminians, I am hearing the language of those who have been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb. Really!