Exposing The Truth

Hoppers Crossing Christian Church is a small home based church in the Western Suburbs of Melbourne. Over the past two to three years since inception, we have become concerned about the state of the Christian Church in western society and have therefore embarked on a mission to spread the truth about what we are seeing.

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Why do Calvinists often omit words from some verses?

Today we studied Ephesians 1:15-23 and in doing so, we looked back at verses 3 to 6 as we want to always ensure each passage in Ephesians is read in context and we are clear on who the different parties are who are mentioned.

If you look at verse 3 ‘Blessed (be) the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly (places) in Christ:’ verse 4 ‘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:’ verse 5 ‘Having predestinated us unto the  adoption by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,’ verse 6 ‘To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.’

Firstly, this is a sentence and it is directed to the saints at Ephesus and those who are faithful in Christ Jesus (who could potentially be the same group but could also be inclusive of other churches to whom this letter was to be distributed to). So verses 3 to 6 are talking to Christians, those already saved.

Secondly, verse 4 says he has chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame. Two truths here that I see are;

  1. Christians have been chosen in Christ (note the ‘in Christ’) before the foundation of the world; and
  2. the purpose was that Christians should be holy and without blemish.

It does not say we have been chosen for justification (salvation) because the context is more to do with the process of sanctification. It also does not say we were chosen ‘unconditionally’. That is sometimes an assumption made by Calvinists because they must ensure the bible supports their assumptions. Yes, there is an election and yes God chooses his people, but nowhere does it say he does it unconditionally. We see in Romans 8:29 and 1 Peter 1:2 that he chooses based on foreknowledge.

I brought your attention to the ‘in him’ or ‘in Christ’ before, and the reason is because interestingly, Calvin leaves these words out in his teaching on this ‘Blessed be God who hath blessed us in Christ, according as he hath chosen us before the foundation of the world.’ (Concerning the Eternal Predestination of God, Calvin p68).

Taking these two words out do somewhat change the meaning of the verse so that it says we were chosen before the foundation of the world. But the verse actually says we were chosen IN HIM before the foundation of the world. This is just another example of where the Calvinist has played around with scripture rather than accept what scripture says and fit our doctrines into what the bible says rather than make the bible say what our doctrines are.

The word used in Ephesians 1:4 for chosen is eklegomai and interestingly, the word used in 1 Peter 1:2  is eklektos (derived from eklegomai). It is clear that we were chosen by God before the foundation of the world. It is also clear that we were chosen based on God’s foreknowledge (consistency is a must).  Foreknowledge being that God knew who would accept salvation and believe the gospel and put their faith in God, and God choosing them. We cannot demand that God save us. Faith is believing in the character of God and his word, his promises. We believe that God exists, we believe that Jesus died and rose again for us to pay the price, we believe that God will save us, but we cannot demand this.

God knows all things from start to finish before the foundation of the world. To believe otherwise would be to limit God’s sovereignty. God is sovereign and can also give free will choices to us. To limit God from doing this is again, to limit his sovereignty. God chooses us and we choose him. This is completely in line with the bible.

Calvinists I think get a little confused when foreknowledge is awkward. Firstly, they discredit it because the Calvinist God has dictated all things or pre-ordained all things that will happen. So they cant accept foreknowledge and therefore have to change the meaning to something that doesn’t make sense anyhow.

I have heard a number of Calvinists talk about foreknowledge sarcastically as it is like God looking (or peering) into the future (or corridors of time), as if God has to get out his binoculars or telescope to pick out any detail (or those who would come to him), But they need to understand who God is. God is the great I AM. He is present at all points of time at all times. Jesus didn’t refer to himself as I was or I will be. He said I AM. Time is a panorama spread out before him from beginning to end. Why then is foreknowledge so difficult for Calvinism? Or perhaps their God is indeed limited and cannot effectively use foreknowledge? Then he isn’t the God of the bible.

Check out other articles on this website to see other examples of misinterpreting bible verses, taking them out of context, changing or removing words and applying rules incorrectly to verses. If Calvinism is really the truth, then why the need to change the bible? Why doesn’t the bible clearly state their doctrines?

Biblical truth versus calvinist doctrines

I have often put forward what the bible says on certain Christian doctrines to calvinists on my facebook page. Many of them like to post what sounds like a biblica truth, and usually quoted by a well known calvinist such as Paul Washer or John MacArthur or Sproul or Piper, etc. I firstly find it strange that many of the evangelical Christians I know, dont have an issue with posting anything from a calvinist such as MacArthur, yet its a no no to post a quote from a well known pentecostal. Whilst some of the quotes are often true or great bits of inspiration, those posting them probably arent aware if the person they are quoting, even agrees with them biblically, or is even a Christian.

Satan knows the bible well and he will appear as an angel of light. He wont appear to a Christian as some evil lying murderer as that would be too easy to spot. For some reason majority of Christians in Australia have such as lack of discernment to be able to understand spiritual warfare. Just because you are a Christian does NOT mean you cant be attacked by Satan. Any teacher or preacher telling you that you cannot be attacked by Satan and that spiritual warfare is between God and Satan only, is lying to you.

How does Satan attack solid evangelical biblically fundamental churches? Well for a start, he will use different tatics on each church depending on what weaknesses he can find. You may say, but the gates of hell cannot prevail against the church. Well that is true, but if the church invites Satan in then the gates arent going to keep him out now are they?

Same concept with our lives. If in our daily walk, we invite Satan into our lives through COMPROMISE and SIN, then he will gain some form of control. He gains that control through us giving him that right, through sin and compromise.  The first thing I believe Satan will take control of if we continue in sin or compromise is our discernment. It is a very dangerous weapon against Satan as with discernment, we can see through his evil schemes and lies. Without it though, we are not fully equipped for battle.

We gain discernment through reading and studying the Bible and through a close relationship with God. Even through fellowshipping with other like minded believers. The Holy Spirit gives us discernment. If we ignore the Holy Spirit and decide we are going to compromise through listening and accepting false doctrines or sin through whatever means, then how are we going to hear the Holy Spirit? I would like to study this more and there are so many answers in the Bible on all this, such as Ephesians 6 talking about the armour we are given by God and unless we wear that armour, we cannot fight effectively. If we werent in spiritual warfare, there would be zero need for armour right?

So onto calvinist doctrines (which I pray you have the discernment to see through any non-truths).  I often see someone talk about faith being a gift from God. I know straight away they are from a reformed belief when they say that, or else they are being led towards reformed. I then ask, ok so where in the bible does it say faith is a gift? I see many places it talks to faith being a response to God’s character, trusting in who He is and His promises, and a choice mind you, but I dont see anywhere in the Bible where it mentions faith being a gift.

The response is almost always either silence (as the believer doesnt really know why they believe that, they may have just been told it by their calvinist pastor), or else a ‘i’ll get back to you’ and so far they never have. You may have heard this verse quoted:

Ephesians 2:8: “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God” (NASB).

However, when you read this verse or if you study the greek and understand what it says, you will quickly find out that this verse does NOT say faith is a gift. It says that by grace you have been saved through faith, not of yourselves, it is the gift of God. The gift of course being by grace you were saved. Salvation is the gift. Is this consistent with the rest of the Bible? I say yes. Salvation as a free gift is spoken of many times in the Bible. The verse of course says that it is received THROUGH faith. Faith not being the gift. However, many calvinists will twist this verse to say faith is the gift. The verse doesnt say that. Is faith being a gift consistent with the rest of the Bible? I cant find anywhere in the Bible stating faith being a gift so I say no. If the doctrine conflicts with the rest of the Bible then throw it out. If it isnt found elsewhere, and there is a doctrine in that passage or verse that is consistent, then I would go with the one that is consistent elsewhere. The Bible does NOT contradict itself (contrary to belief by many non-Christians that it does – they just dont understand it).

Is the atonement limited to just the elect? Or another way to put it, did Christ only die for the elect? Calvinists usually believe in limited atonement. Evanglical Christians believe it is for all people for whom Christ died and therefore all can come. I wont go into the logic (or illogic) that calvinist go into to prove this one, but very simply, throughout the Bible there are numerous passages that say Jesus Christ died for the whole world, or all men, gentiles and jews. However calvinists will try and prove a verse says something else. Thing is, their proof means re-writing verses to suit the doctrine. Now that is a no-no and we know what the warning is to those who change the Bible.

1 John 1:9 to 1 John 2:2 say:

If we confess our sin he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.

Note that ‘our sins’ applies to the same group of Christians. So the same group of Christians for whom he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse from all unrighteousness, he is also the propitiation for the sins of. But then goes onto say BUT also for the sins of the whole world. So if ‘us’ is the Jewish Christians and the ‘whole world’ is the rest of the Christians (and not the whole world as the verse does actually say), then it gets a bit confusing given John only says the Jewish Christians have an advocate with the Father and not the rest of the Christians.

Again, consistency issue. John 3:16 backs up the reading of these verses in 1 John as that Christ is the propitiation for the sins of Christians and the whole world (all including non-Christians). It says that God so loved the WORLD that he gave his only begotten son, that whosover believes in him shall not perish but have everlasting life. According to the calvinists, they need to rewrite this one also as the world referring to the elect only. Apparently God didnt love the rest, the other 95% of the population. Yet He says He desires all men may come. So now we have an issue with God having two wills. See how changing the meaning of a verse creates all this confusion. God is NOT the author of confusion. Satan is. So in conclusion, I believe Calvinist theology, which has its roots in Augustine (father of catholic and lutheran beliefs as well), is a counterfeit alternative to church to catholicism and is from Satan himself. Just research Augustine and you will see he was certainly no role model. Neither was Calvin for that matter.

God bless. I pray that you do your own research and checking what I have written and checking anything on this website for Biblical consistency. Also test whatever you learn in church or from other sources. I do understand that knowing and spreading truth will often lead to a lonely life, one of suffering or persecution, even from those whom you would call Christian brothers and sisters, but for the short time we are here on earth, it is worth fighting the fight and standing firm on the Biblical truth.

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