“My Dad hates God”

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A few months ago I ran into one of my ex-witnessing partners at Costco.  We talked for over an hour.  At one point the topic of the lost and Calvinism came up… because I brought up the subject of course.  I asked him if he was still a Calvinist, and he said he was.

The last time I spoke with him his father was not a believer.  I asked him, “Is your dad still an unbeliever?”

He said “Yes.”

I asked, “Why?” 

He paused for a moment and then said, “My father hates God and rejects Him.”

Hmmm…something isn’t adding up here.

Christ didn’t die for you

I said, “If your father continues to reject Christ until the day he dies that proves only one thing… Christ never died for your Father… so thats why your father is going to hell.  People go to hell because God didn’t die for them.”

He paused for a moment and basically repeated what he said, “People go to hell because they hate God and reject Him.  My father hates God and rejects Him.”

I responded “I know as a Calvinist you believe Christ died only for the elect, only for some people, not most people.  He did this because He eternally loves the elect, and doesn’t eternally love the unelect.  If your father is not one of the elect then its not because of anything your father has done, such as hating God as you say, its because Christ didn’t love him enough to die for him.  God made this decision before your father was born.  While its true your dad hates God, thats not why he is going to hell if Calvinism is true.” 

I continued, “Do you interpret Romans 9 as saying before Esau did anything good or bad God hated him?”   He said “Yes.”

“Ok then, does it matter if Esau hated God?”  My friend stared at me… it was almost as if he were …thinking… which is something good to see Calvinists do.

I continued, “God already hated Esau first!  Calvinism teaches before the universe was created God decided who He will hate and who He will eternally love.  Esau’s hatred of God makes no difference to God, and your father’s hatred of God makes no difference to God either.  God has already decided the fate of Esau and your father!  What Esau and your father do will not change what God has ALREADY DECIDED before they were born!”

“God has carried out this decision by refusing to die on the cross for Esau and your father.  Christ never died for them in the first place!  They aren’t rejecting salvation because salvation is not mean’t for them!”

You aren’t invited!

My Calvinist friend looked confused, and he should be since Calvinism is a convoluted mess.  Contradictions in a doctrine is a clear sign something is not true and those ideas should be discarded.

“Lets say I’m having a party and your not invited.  I don’t love you enough to invite you.  After the invitation is sent out I find out you hate me.  I really don’t care if you hate me because I already hated you before you were born, which is why I never invited you to the party.  I don’t want you at the party!  Are you rejecting my invitation because you hate me?  Of course not!  I NEVER INVITED YOU!  You cannot reject an invitation I have never extended to you!”

Calvinists like to say people go to hell because unbelievers reject God, but thats not what Calvinists really believe.  Calvinists believe God rejected the unelect before the foundation of the world.  An unbelievers sin has nothing to do with why God rejects them.  Calvinists believe God hated Esau BEFORE he did anything good or bad!

Sovereignty is not changed by men

I continued, “If God is truly ‘sovereign”, as Calvinists define that term, then is God moved by what men do?  Does it matter to God if men hate God or love God or are indifferent?  God has already decided the fate of all and He will do what He will do.  The idea God isn’t moved by what men do is evidenced by the fact that some people are saved.  Apparently God ignored their hatred of Him in those cases right?”  My friend finally agreed with that.  “Ok, this proves that what men do have no effect on God so stop telling me your father isn’t saved because he hates God!  God can save a sinner when He feels like it or He can damn them when He feels like it.  God could ignore your father’s hatred if He decides to!

My friend didn’t realize that his agreement was a betrayal of his beliefs about Calvinism, and about how illogical and irrational his beliefs are.  The whole discussion bewildered me.  How could a Christian who is called to “rightly divide the word of truth” be ok with ideas that do not rightly divide the word of truth?  Where does it say in the bible that contradictions are true?

Bad explanations abound

After many seconds of silence he finally stammered back with, “My father… is going to hell because he hates God… I don’t know if I can explain it any better than that.”

I can explain it better… Calvinism should be discarded!

The truth is the bible teaches God loves all eternally and because of that love God used His sovereign Will to predestine a plan.  His plan is to send His Son to die for all so that anyone who believes in Him will have everlasting life through the sacrifice of Himself on the cross.  God has ordained that anyone who rejects Him will go to hell because they did not believe in God’s plan of salvation.  In short, God saves anyone who will come to Him by faith and will reject those who do not.  God does not pick and choose arbitrarily who goes to heaven and hell.  The bible says Christ tasted death for every man on the cross, He draws all men to Himself (John 12), and He wants all to come to a knowledge of the truth.

Having said all of this my friend was correct about one thing, his dad will go to hell if he continues to reject God because God is truly offering him the free gift of salvation.  Unfortunately my friend has contradictory ideas about the god he serves, such as the notion that Christ died on the cross for some people, not all.  Deception is at its peak when contradictions are accepted as truth, instead of discarded as lies.

While my Calvinist friend repeated his original assertion I took his stammering as a good sign.  Its an indication that his thoughts on Calvinism are colliding with sound reason and logic.  Its as if the stronghold that Calvinism has on his mind is being hammered on by truth.  Its difficult to be honest and at the same time believe in a doctrine that causes so much confusion about the God you serve.

Hopefully one day he may realize its not his own finite understanding of an infinite God thats the problem, its a man-made doctrinal filter called Calvinism thats the problem.

  1. Usagi says:

    Pointed and accurate on every point.

    Put me in the camp of feeling 100% that the teachings of Calvinism are every bit as dangerous as Hinduism, Islam, or any other false religion.

  2. Dave G. says:

    I have some questions for you, Bill. But first, a little background on me:

    I first heard the word of God preached in an Independent Baptist church ( that taught the same things you appear to believe ) in my area when I was 12 years old in 1978. I distinctly remember, not the words of the preacher persuading me to believe on Christ, but what I felt like during the preaching of God’s words…very sober and very riveted on what God’s word itself was saying; Verses like Romans 3:23, John 3:16, James 2:10, Romans 3:10 and many others. In other words, I knew His words were directed right at me. I knew I was a sinner and in deep trouble…I believed on Christ as my Saviour and was baptized within a few days.

    Without getting into systematic theologies like “Calvinism” and “Arminianism”, I wonder if you might answer a few questions from Scripture:

    1) Where in God’s word is salvation ever phrased as an “offer”? Is it assumed to be an offer, or is it actually an offer, as in, ” You do this and I will do that”? Is the New Testament in Christ’s blood an agreement between man and God , or is it yet another covenant that God institutes and keeps, knowing that man cannot?

    Question: Where in Scripture do you see salvation as an offer?

    2) You made the statement,

    ” While my Calvinist friend repeated his original assertion I took his stammering as a good sign. Its an indication that his thoughts on Calvinism are colliding with sound reason and logic. Its as if the stronghold that Calvinism has on his mind is being hammered on by truth. ”

    …to which I have to ask, “The truth of what… “sound reasoning and logic”?” If God’s word says,

    ” Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.” ( Proverbs 3:5 )

    …and we know that it does, then do you believe Him? IMO, God’s word is not addressed to reason, sir; It is addressed to the hearing of faith. Do you believe Him at His words? Are you willing to believe ANYTHING He says, because HE is saying it? Do you trust Him to tell you the truth, whether or not you immediately understand it? As I see it, John 6:41-69 is a good example of His sheep believing ANYTHING He says, while the rest of the world will stop short at trusting His words in their entirety and “walk no more with Him”.

    God’s word says, ” My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: ” ( John 10:27 )

    Do you trust God’s words?

    Do you trust Acts 13:48 as much as you trust John 3:16? Do you trust Ephesians 1:4-5 as much as you trust Romans 5:8? Do you trust 2 Thessalonians 2:13-14 as much as you trust John 5:24? Finally, do you trust Romans 8:29-30 as much as you trust Romans 8:28? If not, then maybe you should ask yourself what you are trusting in…God’s word, or your own “sound logic and reasoning”. Personally, I would not trust MY own “sound logic and reasoning” as far as I could throw it.

    Question: Do you trust your own “sound reason and logic”, or do you trust God’s words…even if you don’t understand them?

    3) You made this statement, ” I continued, “If God is truly ‘sovereign”, as Calvinists define that term, then is God moved by what men do? ”

    Let’s forget a minute how “Calvinists” define God’s sovereignty in specifics…How do you define His “sovereignty”? ( Keep in mind something I have not told you yet…I am not a “Calvinist”, and I couldn’t care less what he taught or what they teach. ) As God’s word defines it ( Daniel 4:35 for example ) or do you trust something else outside of God’s word to define it? Hopefully not “sound logic and reasoning”, because to me, it isn’t. Did I mention that I don’t trust even my own “sound logic and reasoning”? It’s let me down so many times I’ve almost given up on that…especially when it comes to what my Saviour says. I’d rather believe Him.

    Here’s Daniel 4:35, when Nebuchadnezzar came to his senses and glorified God:

    ” and all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and [among] the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?”

    Question: How do you define God’s sovereignty? By Scripture, or by something else?

    4) You made this statement, ” Contradictions in a doctrine is a clear sign something is not true and those ideas should be discarded.”

    Contradictions according to God’s revealed word, or to our own understanding of it as fallen human beings? IMO, there’s a difference between the two.

    Question: What to you is a contradiction…God’s word that cannot lie, or your own understanding of it? I don’t know about you, but I would rather trust God who cannot lie, then even ME…who can.

    Bill, I do not ask and say these things to castigate or lambast or even shame you…I ask and say these things to get you to question who and what you are believing; Your own, CURRENT understanding of God’s word, or God’s word ITSELF, and letting Him show you over time and much study, what it really says.

    MANY teachings I once took for granted have been shown to me to be unbiblical after years of God gradually teaching me…not the first time or even the 40th time I read a passage…but in God’s time after diligent study of all of His word for many years. IMO, it’s a life-long process, not a “baking session” where we put our minds in the “oven” and out comes a fully formed, spiritually mature believer in “x amount of minutes”.

    As I see it, there are no quick answers to the hard and fast questions. But if we as His children obey Him and study to show ourselves approved unto God, He will reward that effort.

    May God bless you in the knowledge of His grace.

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