A critique of the New Calvinism

Discussion in 'Calvinism & The Doctrines of Grace' started by JonathanHunt, Jun 9, 2009.

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  1. JonathanHunt

    JonathanHunt Puritan Board Senior

  2. CharlieJ

    CharlieJ Puritan Board Junior

    I think that though there is some legitimacy to his complaints, the general lack of balance and accuracy in the article limits its usefulness. His major charge of worldliness is that the musical genre is inappropriate. Also, he fails to make necessary distinctions - John MacArthur is by no means friendly with Driscoll, and T4G's inclusion of Mahaney does not say anything about cessationism that Duncan's inclusion does about paedo-baptism.

    Reading this, for a moment I thought I was back at Bob Jones.
  3. LawrenceU

    LawrenceU Puritan Board Doctor

    Wow. Unfortunately, I am not surprised. I respect Masters, but not his fundamentalist tendencies. He is making some very broad generalities in this article. While I agree that worldliness is a problem in much of the church today. I would not point to the same things that Masters does. Case in point: Musical form. I am not a fan of heavy metal, rap, or other more 'edgey' music, but to say that using that form is the same type of synchretism that plagued Israel is quite a leap. It wasn't the music that marked that activity that marked that worship, it was the embracing and worship of other gods.

    His lumping MacArthur into the charismatic camp because of the use of more modern music forms is telling.

    What I saw is a man who is entrenched in form over doctrine.

    We should strive toward holiness in our lives. But, it should be a Biblical definition of holiness, not a societal definition.
  4. JonathanHunt

    JonathanHunt Puritan Board Senior

    I made the MacArthur-Driscoll comment when I sent in a request to have the article put online.

    I don't think that I view paedobaptism and cessationism as two issues of the same order. Dr Masters himself relies heavily on some paedobaptists as conference speakers and seminary lecturers.
  5. raekwon

    raekwon Puritan Board Junior


    Looks to me as if he's guilty of a "worldliness" similar to what he's accusing others of, except he's using a worldly definition of holiness. That's much more dangerous than (what he calls) "worldly" musical forms.
  6. ColdSilverMoon

    ColdSilverMoon Puritan Board Senior


    I just dittoed your ditto, Rae. I see nothing "unholy" or "worldly" in the conferences he mentions, though I'll admit they aren't my personal style either. But something modern or contemporary or even edgy doesn't necessarily make something worldly.

    Pastor Underwood also makes a good point - he seems to value form over doctrine.
  7. Jie-Huli

    Jie-Huli Puritan Board Freshman

    I agree with Dr Masters' article entirely and hope that it will be widely read.

    I do not think the issue of worship style is a minor issue, but that is of course a much larger discussion. The kinds of worldliness and compromise Dr Masters is talking about are not limited to music, however --- the proponents of the so called "new Calvinism" are far, far removed from Puritan and Reformed theology on countless issues, a number of which are mentioned by Dr Masters --- the continuing application of the Sabbath Day, the Second Commandment prohibition against images of Christ, the continuing validity of the moral law generally, the regulative principle of worship, the meaning of holiness and separation from worldliness, the duty of seeking God's will in personal decision-making . . . The list could go on and on. Every department of the Christian life is affected.

    Dr Masters has written about many of the above issues at greater length elsewhere (and with a definite Scriptural basis - it is not a matter of personal cultural preferences) and it cannot be expected that he would discuss them all in detail in this one brief article - that is not its purpose. The key point he is making here, which I should think it is hard to deny, is that the "new Calvinists" represent a sharp break indeed with what has always been known as Calvinism in the past. They are not reformed in any meaningful sense - it is a very narrow form of Calvinism they hold, accepting Calvinist soteriology, but tragically casting away all of the deeper implications of Calvinism and reformed theology on sanctification and the Christian life. Some of them love to quote certain Puritans, but there can be little doubt the Puritans themselves would be appalled by most of what is going on.



    -----Added 6/9/2009 at 02:16:09 EST-----

    Other than not detailing the differences amongst the teachers discussed in the article, could you clarify what in the article you believe was factually inaccurate?


  8. historyb

    historyb Puritan Board Junior

    I'll have to read the article later, I consider myself a new Calvinist with Driscoll.
  9. Gloria

    Gloria Puritan Board Sophomore

    Once again someone deems it necessary to equate his own personal preferences with God's law and word ("worldly" music). Meh.

    I totally agree with this but it seems the author, as Raekwon said, is failing to define "worldliness" using the Bible. I can say the same for consecration, reverence and sincere obedience to his will. How can he, without witnessing the daily lives of these men say that people like Macarthur (who I'm not a HUGE fan of), Piper and the like, are not living in "sincere obedience to his will?" What sin have these men committed in preaching at these conferences and supporting this resurgence? Are they leading these young believers into sin? Are they spreading a false gospel?

    It's sad to see brothers BASHING other brothers. I know we're called to judge each other righteously, but as I said, he's judging based on his preferences, NOT the Bible.

    I also wanted to comment on this:
    God calls who he calls. He finishes what he begins. All those he draws will stay with it by HIS grace and all those who are just caught up in the moment or into the weighty implications of the doctrines of grace will fall away. The gospel is preached to all, the truth is shared with all. We plant the seeds but God makes the seed grow and flourish. Isn't he describing the parable of the sower that our Lord told us about in Matthew 13?

    Is it not God himself who ordains those who WILL BE "good soil" by his grace according to his purpose?

    He is defending "calvinism" but is failing to practically apply these doctrines and allow them to shape his view of evangelism, sanctification and salvation.

    I'm a calvinist. I praise God that he introduced me to reformed theology THROUGH CHRISTIAN RAP. I do understand though that right doctrine does not save me. Christ saved me. The author, through this article, seems more concerned with a set of doctrinal stances. We really need to learn to be more gracious towards one another...
  10. christianhope

    christianhope Puritan Board Freshman

    Quoted from the aforementioned article:

    "" Truly proclaimed, the sovereignty of God must include consecration, reverence, sincere obedience to his will, and separation from the world.

    You cannot have Puritan soteriology without Puritan sanctification. You should not entice people to Calvinistic (or any) preaching by using worldly bait. We hope that young people in this movement will grasp the implications of the doctrines better than their teachers, and come away from the compromises. But there is a looming disaster in promoting this new form of Calvinism. ""


    I'm glad to hear what Master's had said- although he may have gone a bit too far or did not provide enough clarification, the courage and benefit of such a statement far exceeds the short comings- although I do not profess to be perfectly right in my judgment here, it's a topic that is very broad and hard to define, at least for me.

    Overall, I find this article to be a breath of fresh air. Something I have noted in all of the churches I have attended, is a general lack of desire for holiness and separation with the world. This has been a burden on my heart and I'm thankful for this voice stating a needful return to such.

    It's really so hard today in this modern world to make even seemingly innocent compromises. There is so much sensuality everywhere that if I were to jump into alot of these newer hip hop christian scenes I would expect to find a great deal of irreverence and ungodliness. Although- true- the music itself may not be wrong in some of it's contemporary forms, the general compromises that come with it are very burdensome and sorrowful for me. I recall Paul Washer or Charles Leiter (can't recall) telling a story about a man who fasted for 28 days, basically locked away in his room and enjoyed wondrous communion with God- afterwards, the man picked up a newspaper and almost threw up, it was so sickening and worldly to him...

    John Owen sums up this example in this quote: “The custom of sinning takes away the sense of it, the course of the world takes away the shame of it”

    Christians don't realize how weak they really are, and how easily influenced and hardened they really are. 'The course of the world takes away the shame of their sin.' We don't often realize how sinful we really are, and how prone to it... It's a mark of sanctification to be separate from it, certainly not legalistically, that's just hypocrisy, but, in sincerity, not trying to walk the line between the two. Men of God, who have such great genuine love for Him, and for all that He loves, will have a greater sense of this. The nearer you are drawn to Him the more a christian realizes the greatness of his sin. Just as the writer of Hebrews stated:

    Hebrews 5:14 But solid food is for fullgrown men, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern good and evil. (Heb*5:14*ASV)

    For myself, what I look for most in a professing christian, especially a 'calvinist' is a genuine love for God, a delight in His commandments, great desire for holiness and a hatred of sin... These characteristics, are the heart and soul of the doctrines of grace themselves, and of course they should be viewed together!

    I enjoyed greatly what Sinclair Ferguson said in a sermon: "what does a calvinist look like? "He's loving, humble, compassionate, he loves God and hates sin etc..." (Not a direct quote, vaguely recalled)

    All that to say, I'm thankful for Peter Master's article and think it will do far more good than harm- now if only we had more fervent examples of men living this character! It is so rare in these days. For me, it's what I'm always searching for, I'm young and need men who have such a reverence and presence of God on them. That's what attracts me.
  11. JonathanHunt

    JonathanHunt Puritan Board Senior

    A standard defence that those who decry 'new worship' are wrong because it is a matter of their 'personal taste'. A fair reading of his scripturally based arguments surrounding worship would be required to make such a sweeping statement.

    I don't agree with the article in every respect, as Jie-Huli does, but I think you are being a little unfair.
  12. ColdSilverMoon

    ColdSilverMoon Puritan Board Senior

    I agree with you on the first two items in your list: the Sabbath day and the 2nd Commandment. However, this isn't just a problem with "New Calvinists," but with Reformed folk across the board, at least in the US. Those of us who still adhere to the 2nd and 4th Commandments are a vast minority. So I agree with you (and Dr. Masters) on these points, but they are certainly not limited to the New Calvinists as described in his article.

    I disagree with every item in the rest of your list. When has a New Calvinist ever said the moral law is no longer valid? When have they repudiated the RPW? How does their definition of holiness and separation from worldliness differ from yours and Dr. Masters'? I doubt its based on any Scriptural understanding. And when have they ever discarded the concept of seeking God's will in decisions? Piper, for one, is emphatic on that point. The biggest difference between the "New" and "Old" Calvinists is stylistic. I understand your desire to keep the Reformed faith pure, my friend, but I can't see how these New Calvinists are failing in that regard.
  13. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    While I have no doubt that he was able to find Calvinistic students and churches in the early 1970s, Calvinism in the US neared statistical insignificance in those days. His use of the word 'preposterous' shows a victory of rhetorical flourish over intellectual rigor, of heat over light.
  14. awretchsavedbygrace

    awretchsavedbygrace Puritan Board Sophomore

    If you look at all the articles. There is one entirely dedicated on John Piper and what John Piper calls " Christian Hedonism". Quite interesting. But yet so, so, wrong. It seems, as if most of his articls are soley designed to attack others who are in what is called the "new calvinism".
  15. Archlute

    Archlute Puritan Board Senior

    I won't take time to read the article (not that I would disagree with him necessarily, but I have a lot on my plate right now), but I would like to clarify something in his defense. I believe that I am speaking accurately when I say that there is a disjunction of thought between many of the younger reformed folk on this board (and in the PCA as a whole) regarding issues of musical form and many older ministers (or even Westerners in general) who would take a particular approach to music and the human spirit.

    Up until the early to mid 20th century the predominant way of viewing the relationship of the arts and the human spirit was set forth by Platonic and Aristotelian aesthetic theory. The basic idea being that music has the ability, for better or for worse, to affect the human spirit, and therefore we should be careful about how we allow our art, and our music in particular, to be constructed and ingested.

    This is not a bad thing, and would fall in line with the apostolic instruction regarding sobermindedness and respectability being a virtue among office holders in the church. For if it is good for them to set and example of being sober in our thoughts, and yet we listen to music that causes our thoughts to drift and flow with the induced emotions, how can we then say that exposing ourselves to these musical forms on a regular basis is following in the footsteps of apostolic teaching and its intent for the personal life of Christian?

    However, in our own day, when classical thought is a widely neglected area of our educational development (dead white men, you know), and personal liberty reigns as king in our decision making processes (just read current popular critiques of the aesthetic restrictions found in Plato's Republic, and how un-American they are :lol: ) one begins to see why even many of today's Christians take offense at statements targeting music. They have no intellectual context in which to place such a criticism other than it being an encroachment upon their personal liberties. They think that labeling certain forms of music as worldly and others as less so is an arbitrary distinction, because they have never taken time, or maybe not had opportunity give, to think about the subject as men such as Dr. Peter Masters have been given opportunity.

    The bottom line is that, whether you want to label certain styles as being worldly or otherwise, music is indeed a powerful force that affects our emotions and our thoughts. If you want to deny that you are either a liar or an android, and I would hope that you would not want to exist as either! With that in mind, our selection of music for worship needs carefully to be thought through. Are we creating soberminded disciples of Christ, or are we developing our people in less strengthening and edifying ways? I am not hesitant to say that on more than one occasion my wife and I (and on even one occasion my kids also!) have been embarrassed to see people leading worship in Reformed congregations who were swaying before the us with eyes shut and who looked like they were waiting for someone to come up and give them a kiss! When your own young daughter has to ask why the men leading worship in a local PCA congregation were sweating and "looked like he was trying to kiss his microphone", then you know that issues of worship need to be addressed!

    So for all who think Peter Masters is acting like a fundy with his take on music, I think you should realize that a bit of ignorance may be going on at your own end, and that you should familiarize yourselves with historic Western thought on the matter, as well as studying that thought in the light of Scripture (the Pastoral Epistles especially) to see how much light these man may have been able to gather from general revelation on the matter. You might be surprised to find that there has been a discussion going on for quite some time on the relationship between music, the emotions, and ethics (millenia, in fact).
  16. A2JC4life

    A2JC4life Puritan Board Freshman

    I confess I did not read the article. Having read some of the portions quoted here, I suspect I would disagree strongly with the author on many points. On this one, however, I think that he is absolutely right-on.
  17. Wannabee

    Wannabee Obi Wan Kenobi

    Ditto Lawrence, Mason and other dittos of theirs.
    The statement, in itself, is right on. However, is his assumption that the practices of these men is consistent with "worldly bait"? This seems like more of a philosophical imposition with a lack of Scriptural scrutiny than a biblical treatise. It's a good twist of words with a bad argument behind it. What he's addressing needs to be addressed. But this needed point is lost in rhetoric and lack of Scriptural presentation.
  18. jogri17

    jogri17 Puritan Board Junior

    The good and bad of the article.

    To give my opinion I have divided the following into 3 sections: the Good, bad and the chais pas(the I don't know). The texte that is in normal texte is copied from the original article and my individual pensées on the subject inwhich it deals shall be in bold.

    Good: In the sense I agree with the statment or the general spirit of it.
    1. John Piper proclaiming Calvinistic sentiments. And this picture is repeated many times through the book – large conferences being described at which the syncretism of worldly, sensation-stirring, high-decibel, rhythmic music, is mixed with Calvinistic doctrine.
    When when wants to evaluate the movement without dealing with the fringes of it (e.g. Driscoll) it is best to deal with Piper given his sound evangelical and acadmic creditentials. Piper is to historic Reformed theology what Baxter is to Puritanism there is a strong connection but his beliefs DO NOT by any stretch of the imagination mirror the overall claims by that of historic Reformed confessionalism. His many Passion conference are not Reformed by any means. But one can argue that they are MUCH BETTER than a Billy Graham Crucade and they are perfectly with in the realm of evangelical orthodoxy defined by historic practices. But at the end of the day Piper is commited not to the Reformed tradition because he honestly feels that the Reformed and the Reformed Baptistic traditions (I count confessional baptists as Reformed personally though I am aware of the debate) while have MUCH to offer evangelicals of all sorts they do nor represent his understanding of what the Bible teaches. For that reason he picks and chooses that he finds biblical from many traditions like a good fundamentalist-neoevangelical usually will do. For him there is no creed but Christ and no confession but the Bible. He acknowledges statements of faith and a confession adopted by his own local church however it can easily be changed by the will of the people of one local church.

    2. They hold anti-fourth-commandment views, taking a low view of the Lord’s Day, and so inflicting another blow at a consecrated lifestyle.
    There is no question that I would be apart of this movement to some extent. When I joined my local church because of my change of belief to padeo-baptism (I was free to because I moved to a different country and my old membership was in a reformed baptist church; NOT BECAUSE OF THAT CHANGE IN CONVICTION ONLY) I must confess my sabbath observance and my view of the Church was sinfully low. Yet the Pastor was so generous and kind to take me under his wing and help me. I really began to call the sabbath a delight and I stoped skipping church because I was out late. I am not going to say my sabbath observance is perfect, but this is a place where God has been working in me the last year through the ordinary means of preaching and the sacraments. As sure as I am about the 4th commandment, it must be acknowledged that many of them do not believe in the sabbath and they prefer to use the term ''Lord's day'' and say that the OT rules don't apply. I think there is a legtimate debate on this subject from a biblical-theological perspective though at the end of the day I think the Reformed approach is correct. Also we must remember that keeping thes sabbath in a consistent matter is a matter of Confessional allowances and NOT OPC, CANADIAN REFORMED, DUTCH REFORMED, SCOTTISH PRESBYTERIAN, PCA, ect.. tradition. Each Reformed tradition has it own traditional dues and don'ts and I believe in the matter of how we keep the sabbth in certain questionable areas (ex: restarurants, family sports, going to friend's house, driving, taking public transportation, cooking, movies, tv, ect...) ought to be left to Christian liberty with the goal of trying out best to live within our consciences to glorify God and obey him and not trying to flaunt our liberty against others and offend them.

    3. They are soft on separation from worldliness [see endnote 2].
    Of course a big aspect of this is semantics however playing movies with swearing in church, a desire to ''sanctify the secular'' (When there is nothing inherently with the secular), and an increasing desire to see means as 100% negociatable are without questions signs of worldliness. I disagree with many aspects of fundamentalism but they are right in saying God calls his elect to live different. This is hard and it has always been especially for those not born covenant children (like myself) and we feel have feelings of insecurity around those born into Christian homes. An interesting thing I have noticed is that a huge bulk of the young, restless and reformed folk were not raised in Christian homes (like myself). And our spiritual lives have been much more about constant struggles to best conform our lives to the Bible. We usually got saved out of an arminian-evangelical church and after a while hear Piper or someone, discouver the (so called) TULIP and our vision of God become so much bigger and we struggle in the implications of a Dordtian solteriology (worship, sabbath, church government, ect...) but we don't want to loose our evangelical identity but we want to reform also and it's a constant battle for many of us (myself) who see themselves as both evangelical and confessionally reformed. We don't see a contradiction but there are tensions without question. As a result of this tention some evangelicals see us as conforming to fundamentalism and some Refomed folk see us as conforming to a sort of anti-nomianism and worldliness. Yet where Reformed theology doesn't produce true life changing effects the only word to call it is: SIN.

    4. True Calvinism and worldliness are opposites. Preparation of heart is needed if we would search the wonders and plumb the depths of sovereign grace.
    There is no need to comment greatly in this given #3, however I will just say I agree with it but the big question is what is Calvinism? Is it 5 points or is there more? I of course believe there is more

    Bad: I strongly disagree
    1.In the 1970s and 80s there were also smaller Calvinistic publishers in the USA, and at that time the phenomenon of Calvinistic discount Christian bookshops began, with bulging catalogue lists and a considerable following. The claim that Calvinism virtually disappeared is hopelessly mistaken.
    I was born in 1987, however my older and more godly friend with whom I have talked about the history of Calvinism in the USA and globally (see Dr. Curt D. Daniel; Reformed Baptist historian of Calvinism who is revising his ''History and Theology of Calvinism'' and should be out sometime in 2010)Sense the second great aweakening Calvinists have been in a downdoward spiral. We are mostly Amillenialists here so of course there has been some ups but as the Banner of Truth was taking off so the PCUSA was becoming heretical. As the evangelicals in the Anglican communion became more vocal so the heretics grabbed all the powerful posistions, ect... I think a major disctinction has to be maintained between Calvinistic instutions and Calvinistic philosophy. I would not consider Dr. R. Albert Mohler reformed, BUT he helped rescue a seminary from liberalism and has made it friends to both reformed baptists, calvinistic evangelicals and to the historically reformed. The point is that in evangelical circles calvinists were the main force at the beginning of this country and now sense this return to a calvinistic solteriology they have been becoming more influential. Let's be honest here: I am an OPC kinda man but the OPC has not had a great job at reaching out. And there is a certain obsession that easily affect confessional persons to confuse Confessionalism with traditionalism. There are areas where the Psalms permit freedom for the local congregation and the believer historically. You can be a confessional presbyterian and sing Christ Tomlin and HillSong songs (I know you will disagree with me there Dr. Clark!). You can be a confessional Presbyterian and have women deacons (I personally think IT'S A TERRIBLE IDEA that will lead to problems and inevitably liberalism unless you define the idea of a woman deacon different that the man's job, but I maintain its permissible). You can be just as confessional and use a PC as opposed to a MAC (though you are certainly foolish for doing so ). But that presence of calvinism in the states that is mentioned was usually very isolated to certain geographic regions, and bound up with the small traditions and not very known outside the non-evangelical Reformed community. .

    2. Collin Hansen contends that American Calvinism collapsed at the end of the nineteenth century and was maintained by only a handful of people until this great youth revival, but his historical scenario is, frankly, preposterous. As one who regularly visited American seminaries to speak from the early 1970s, I constantly met many preachers and students who loved the doctrines of grace, preaching also in churches of solid Calvinistic persuasion.
    An Appeal to Anecdotes as opposed to an appeal to schollars or data. There is no question that there is a bit of romanticization of the history in Hansen's book however as I said previously it was always very isolated and non engaging and the main source of evangelism in many of the Reformed churches was not 1-1 evangelisaton, gospel tracts, open-air preaching but rather lots of baby making and training them up (which is a good thing! but its not the sum and total of the great commission).

    3. Resolved is the brainchild of a member of Dr John MacArthur’s pastoral staff, gathering thousands of young people annually, and featuring the usual mix of Calvinism and extreme charismatic-style worship.
    McArthur is one of ther persons who is responsible for my initial introduction to expoistory preaching and the idea of presuppositional apolegetics so I have a soft spot for him. It is to be noted that while most of us here would disagree with the dispensationalism and lack of historic confessionalism in MacArthur, he has been a tried and true defender of the Gospel and its implications. He is not charismatic by any means and warmly embraces BB Warfield. He brought Expositroy preaching back to the forefront of fundamentalist, evangelical, and reformed circles when all you would get is a different text every weak and a topical sermon based on that (still exists but is scrinking slowly!), and was one of the first calvinistic (in terms of doctrines of grace, church, worship and preaching) radio ministries.

    4. C J Mahaney is a preacher highly applauded in this book. Charismatic in belief and practice, he appears to be wholly accepted by the other big names who feature at the ‘new Calvinist’ conferences, such as John Piper, John MacArthur, Mark Dever, and Al Mohler. Evidently an extremely personable, friendly man, C J Mahaney is the founder of a group of churches blending Calvinism with charismatic ideas, and is reputed to have influenced many Calvinists to throw aside cessationist views.
    I just think the author misses the Point of T4G. This is not about churches, or denominations or confessions. It's about acknowleding that the invisible Church of Christ exists apart form our circles. In fact if I were in I would welcome Dave Hunt, Norman Geisler, Roger Nicole and Ravi Zacharias all of whom I have GREAT problems with but we can work together with for the promotion of the Gospel. This is why I hate pentecostal theology but I will gladly support a pentecostal missionary who is going to place where only Mormons and jehovah's witnesses are willing to go. My man at T4G is Lignon Duncan and Dr. Dever and Mohler have admitted that if he goes to their church on a communion day he will be denied it. This is not about compromising truth rather it is about evangelicals who have a commitment to the doctrines of Grace and expository preaching but realize that the matter of first importance is the Gospel rightly defined. And on that they are all agreed. T4G does not claim to be confessionally Reformed so I think it's unfair to include it in the criticism.

    5. A more adult affair convened by respected Calvinists, this nevertheless brings together cessationists and non-cessationists, traditional and contemporary worship exponents, and while maintaining sound preaching, it conditions all who attend to relax on these controversial matters, and learn to accept every point of view. In other words, the ministry of warning is killed off, so that every -error of the new scene may race ahead unchecked. These are tragic days for authentic spiritual faithfulness, worship and piety.
    If you believe non-cessationists are not justified before God then I would say you are right. If you believe that some one bay be united to Christ by faith alone and have wrong theology on a non-essential matter (and believe that there are theological TRUTHS not-essential for justification) then this is just wrong. I will not endorce Sovereign Grace ministries to friends asking me for a good Bible church if there is a OPC, PCA, NAPARC member, ARBCA member, or another confessional church... but there are many places where that may not be an option and then in those cases I could reccomend a less than ideal church that affirms the Gospel but with whom I would disagree on secondary matters. It is best to see them as NOT REFORMED, but REFORMING in a direction that pleases and encourages us confessionally reformed folk and we ought to be patient and understanding and form loving relationships with them based on the Bible and try to show them why we think they are wrong.

    Chais pas: both good points and bad points and I could not agree or disagree with it.
    1. They have no problem with contemporary charismatic-ethos worship, including extreme, heavy-metal forms.
    Those who hate contemporary worship use hymns and many other Reformed folk say that hymns are just as bad because they were written by man. They would say unless you sing psalms only you're not really reformed enough. Myself: I personally judge the worship based on content and if the primary focus is on Preaching and the sacrements. I can tollerate many things and see them consistent within a Reformed confessional frame work as long as it keeps within a ballance that promotes: unity, love, tollerance, diversity, multi-generational, multi-cultureal (our worship should not overtly reflect one culture because the Church is not an western, easter, southern, or northern instutition... It's an heavenly institution. This is an area where I think Canadian Calvinists (broudly defined once again) and Evangelicals are doing far better than their American counterparts). So while I may not appreciate one the repetivness of many songs, that is a taste issue not a biblical one given the Psalms can be a bit repetative sometimes.

    2. You cannot have Puritan soteriology without Puritan sanctification. You should not entice people to Calvinistic (or any) preaching by using worldly bait. We hope that young people in this movement will grasp the implications of the doctrines better than their teachers, and come away from the compromises. But there is a looming disaster in promoting this new form of Calvinism.
    I get what he is trying to say however... Baxter, Owen, Bunyan and Sibbes were all Big name Puritans and how they approached worship, theology, living the Christian life, ect.. had LOTS of difference in it. And yet Owen reccomended Bunyan. Sibbes was burried along side Bunyan. Baxter loved Sibbes. You cannot say ''Puritan'' and assume they all believed and practiced the same. One could argue that the Puritan movement was in a sense one big T4G movement given there was much more diversity in a movement that spanned about 100 years (Packer's date used here) and there is much more incommon between Mohler, Duncan, Mahaney,&Dever than there was between Sibbes, Owen, Bunyan and Baxter. And I can say that I have profitted from all 8 of those guys (can't you to some extent?).

    Final thoughts. I think how we confessionally Reformed persons and how the evangelical 5 pointers define ''reformed'' and ''calvinist'' are different as this is the cause of much of the debate. For us to be un-confessionally Reformed is an oxymoron (and it is in my opinion) and to them to be Reformed is to be commited to the Solas of the Reformation and constantly not willing to submit your theological mind to anything apart of the Bible (how they see Sola Scriptura) which is why you have so many baptists who love Dordt but don't affirm the 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith. So while this is not by any means binding here is how I would like to use the labels if I was dictator of Christianity for those within camps that can be considered orthodox...

    Reformed: Any person who is a baptized Christian
    who has given a profession of faith and is a member in good standing of a local Church that is consciously devoted to at least one of the HISTORIC reformed Confessions. ( examples: Joel Beeke, Sinclair Ferguson, Walter Chantry)

    Calvinist: Any person who upholds othodox theology (broadly defined within evangelical tradtion; includes the Reformed but not exclussive) and believes that Confessions may serve as valuable theological guides AND reformed in the matters of solteriology concerning the arminian v. reformed debate and comes down on the side that the Synod of Dort was right. There is a big diversity in this group because the emphesis is placed on solteriology as opposed to the others aspects of tradtioinal dogmatic theology. (Mark Driscoll, Tim Keller, Wayne Grudem)

    Arminian: Any person who either agrees with the historic remonstrant posistion. (Arminious, can't think of many others)

    Evangelical-Arminian: Any person who upcolds the inconsistent theology that became popular in the States and from the spread through out the world that the atonement is universal, one cannot loose their salvation, Man is really bad but with a special dose of restible grace may choose or reject God's offer of salvation, and Election is either based on or is identified as God's foreknowledge (an idea based not on foreordanation but somewhat like a witch looking in to a crystal ball). (Billy Graham, Norman Geisler, John Wesley to a large extent)

    Reformed- Evangelical: One who believes in Reformed solteriology and may a Calvinist or Reformed (as defined above) but while acknoledges the truthfulness of his or her historical tradition (and deffinition I wrote above), strives to acheive a greater ballance between doctrinal purity and strong evangelism that both the Calvinists, the Reformed, the arminians and the evangelical-arminians have failed to acheive in their opinion. They place a greater emphesis on doctrinal purity within their own ecclasitical traditions however keep much more freedom in evangelistic workings and para-church ministry (though never at the expense of the local Church). They strive to acheive ballance but they will always be criticized by others and will defend themselves but try their best to show grace in their defense. Less dogmatic on non-essentials but still are willing to debate non-essentials things publially because they see the importance. There is over lap between Calvinist and Reformed here so one can be Reformed and Calvinst but not here or they can be in here AND one of the other previously mentioned two. (John Piper, R.C. Sproul, John MacArthur, Ligonan Duncan, Al Mohler, Joshua Harris, ect...)

    Those are my thoughts!
  19. A2JC4life

    A2JC4life Puritan Board Freshman

    I think that this would be my conclusion, as well. Although, as I said, I didn't read the whole article - just the clips posted in this thread.
  20. awretchsavedbygrace

    awretchsavedbygrace Puritan Board Sophomore

    O. Wow. I guess rapping or listening to rap music must now be placed under as the same category as sin, huh....And since I rap, and I am a calvinist I guess im at the forefront of this "new calvinism"? Give me a break. :barfy:
  21. Kevin

    Kevin Puritan Board Doctor

    dude, you must post some of your rap so that we can hear it!
  22. AThornquist

    AThornquist Puritan Board Doctor

    sinner :eek:
  23. lynnie

    lynnie Puritan Board Graduate

    My man at T4G is Lignon Duncan and Dr. Dever and Mohler have admitted that if he goes to their church on a communion day he will be denied it.

    Is this true? Anybody got a link to a proof?

    I heard Duncan at a PCRT in Philly talking about the Word of God. One of the most powerful teachings I ever heard....

  24. Kevin

    Kevin Puritan Board Doctor

    When I was your age the first commercially sucessful xn rap group were still crashing in our dorm rooms to avoid hotel bills on there way to gigs!
  25. awretchsavedbygrace

    awretchsavedbygrace Puritan Board Sophomore

    I will. I just haven't worked on anything for a while. School and work have occupied most of my time. I will soon.

    -----Added 6/10/2009 at 01:03:15 EST-----

    :lol: i hope your kidding :(
  26. Gloria

    Gloria Puritan Board Sophomore

    It's not my intention to be "unfair." I made my statements by comparing his definition of "worldly" with the Bible's definition of "worldly." I'll try to show you my line of thinking as briefly as possible.

    I'll begin with the most obvious. Romans 12:1-2, which says:

    What is "the world" in this passage? I'd like to submit that "the world" is the world system in all it's rebelliousness and hatred of God. We are encouraged to "be transformed." How is one transformed? By the world and the spirit. Now, according to the author, this music is "worldly" because of the genre. Where in scripture is it taught or even implied that music, in and of itself, is "worldy"? He seems to be expressing a preference.

    He says:

    I won't even touch on "immoral drug-induced musical forms of worldly culture." This just shows the author's ignorance regarding the subject of Christian rap. Here are my questions: What on earth is a "musical form of worldly culture"? Where did he get this term? By what standard is he making the claim for the existence of a "musical form of worldly culture"? Where is this concept discussed explicitly or implictly in the Bible? Help me out.

    Next. I'm not sure if you are familiar with the lyrics of any Christian rappers, but as an avid supporter, I can tell you that Shai Linne, Trip Lee, Flame, Tedashii, Lecrae, Timothy Brindle, etc. are only putting scripture to music. I listen hymns, psalms and Christian rap. That's how Christ exalting this stuff is.

    There is even an album titled 13 Letters with an exposition of each over music. Tim Brindle has an album "Let's Kill Sin." Sound familiar...yes...John Owen. Brindle is how I was introduced to this AWESOME theologian...

    I don't want go off on a tangent. The point off all of this is, these men do not love the world and it is proven in their music and ministry. They preach that we are not to love the world, we are to shun evil, we are to love the church, we are to preach the gospel, we are to disciple and be discipled, we are use our gifts, we are to show forth fruits of the spirit, live holy lives, serve others, be faithful in our marriages, all to the glory of God out of our love for God. How is this message a "worldly" one? I can't even list all the bible verses associated with what these rappers preach. If these men were "worldly" using the biblical definition of "worldly" they would not preach these things. They would preach the opposite.

    When comparing what these rappers preach with author's implied definition of "wordliness" I saw a difference. I can tell you that many of the rappers I named attend ONE church in Philly. To my knowledge, no one raps during corporate worship on the Lord's Day. If the complaint is a violation of RPW, that should do away with it.

    I could go on and on about this...lol. I think Christian rap has been discussed here ad nauseum. People have the right to have a personal preference. When those same people decide to make it their personal "don'ts," laws that everyone must abide by to be "holy," it becomes a problem. This goes for ANYTHING (music, food, drink, clothing, etc.)

    I hope this makes sense! I'm trying to type this quickly because I need to get back to work.

    -----Added 6/10/2009 at 04:16:05 EST-----

    Thanks for your thoughts on this. I'm familiar with what you've discussed here and I think it's great that you've included this information in this thread.

    If one exposits Ephesians and puts a rap music track under it, what will be the effect on the emotions of the hearers? What if I put that same exposition over a piano? A violin? No music at all? I also wany to reiterate that some of the rappers being targeted in his article are RPW adherents, so the use of said music during corporate worship on the Lord's Day would not occur.

    I also want to add that I don't take personal offense to when people express distaste regarding Christian rap. LOL...I do take offense when people imply that I'm not trying to live a life pleasing to God because I listen to Christian rap. I also take offense when I see attacks based on personal preferences rather than admonishments based on God's word. I've seen the Lord use these men mightily. I've seen some of these men on the streets witnessing to people who frankly, I don't think Dr. Masters would even approach. It's very unfair of him to imply what he's implied about them because they music they use to exalt Christ and is too "rhythmic" for his taste. The saga will continue though...LOL. As you've said, this has been going on for.ev.er.
  27. Roldan

    Roldan Puritan Board Junior

    WOW....that article is full of logical fallacies and written by a person who does not even understand the culture and has lumped every rapper in the same category as those rappers who would pervert a music for thier own gain. Should we also condemn contemporary christian music as wordly too? being that this music has been taken to be used for God's glory, the same can go for any genre..this is ridiculous, but then again I don't expect people who are not of the culture to understand and accept the culture.

    Another thing, so this is called "New Calvinism" because we don't worship like centuries old Puritans? LOL you got to be kidding. Should we dress like them too in order to be accepted, I mean where do we draw the line.

    I am Reformed and also an MC and have been doing so for 13yrs and have seen many upon many come to the Reformed Faith through my music and the music of others but better yet have been regenerated to be recipients of the Gospel through the means of preaching the Gospel through the verbal testimony of these rappers on hot beats.

    The bottom line is this Master's guy knowledge of the culture is extremely lacking and his comparison is far fetched and found wanting.
  28. awretchsavedbygrace

    awretchsavedbygrace Puritan Board Sophomore

    Another Reformed rapper? yikes. lol. That makes three on this board. :)
  29. Prufrock

    Prufrock Arbitrary Moderation

    Respectfully, before you so cavalierly dismiss the concerns of a great many (i.e., the majority of the denizens of this board), it would be fitting to take some time to understand the causes of why Puritans (and the heirs today) worship the way they do; as your comment comparing worship with dress suggests you don't yet understand the theological basis for puritan worship. Our forefathers were mocked and ridiculed for their beliefs on worship, and this is why they were called "Puritans;" this importance which they placed upon it suggests it may be prudent to look into their practices a bit more closely.
  30. ColdSilverMoon

    ColdSilverMoon Puritan Board Senior

    It might be helpful for Ricky to clarify what he means. Worship was at the core of Puritan belief - to dismiss it is to dismiss Puritanism in general. Maybe Ricky means their dress and music styles, being 400 year old, are outdated though their worship principles (namely the RPW) are still valid. If that's his point I would tend to agree with him.
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