Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The God of Calvin

The God understood through the lens of Calvinism is not vindictive or cruel, but is merciful and loving. As the statement "He predestined us," is often misrepresented as a standalone, it places a negative light on the true mercy and love that is God's foreknowledge of us, if, truly, God is a holy God who must punish evil. Since we all are destined for the depths of eternal fire, who but a loving and merciful Yahweh could choose not only to disallow fallen man to swallow the harvest of his deeds, but, prior to the creation of the universe, agree to eat and drink in plenty that which ought to be placed before us, becoming our redemptive penal substitution? In view of the common grace shed upon the elect saints, it seems evident at the least that we are not merely 'chosen', but, rather, saved. 'For it is by grace that you are saved,' that before an inkling of sin was before your eyes, our sweet Messiah drank the wine of your iniquity, thenceforth cleansing you from all unrighteousness.

God's Wrath Indeed Hath Been Poured

As such, it stands to reason that, though God's just wrath indeed has been poured out upon Christ to punish the sinfulness of the elect, the un-chosen absolutely must be without cause of salvation. Yahweh is a just God, not a nearsighted vigilante. Logically, it is beyond the wrath of the Father to punish the same sinfulness twice. Therefore the grace given to you and me is indeed exclusive. However, I demand a little room to ponder the full extent of this exclusiveness; It may be, however unfathomable (as our God is prone to be), that this true exclusiveness fully extends to some around you who have not yet tasted of the riches of God. Because of this, we are charged with the stewardship of the Kingdom, that we may pray "Your kingdom come and Your will be done" into the evangelism and mission of the fellowship in Christ: Love God, love your neighbour, go forth, making disciples and baptizing, teaching them to obey.

Not By Our Choice or Un-Choice

To this end, our purpose ensues, that we are not merely gripping the edge of grace by our choice or un-choice, but, rather, that grace is truly gripping us, and continues to reach out to grip others, to whom we are (or ought to be) used as the hammer that shatters the hardened heart to opened eyes and ears to perceive and hear of the grace that so engulfs us, inside and out. Indeed, that "nothing in all creation can separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord," may we understand and accept that the supralapsarianistic perception that God's decrees to save the elect are truly not for the purpose of condemnation, but for the purpose to save those already condemned, we understand, in a new light, that John Calvin in no way portrayed a stone cold killer, but a spring of liberation and life, from which we, hell-bent on destruction, may be altered and saved, "so that no man may boast of his deeds."

-N. Laughter

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