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Discussion in 'Calvinism & The Doctrines of Grace' started by Jon 316, Feb 28, 2009.
Thanks for mang your testimony available Joshua, I also like your website.
Boy, does that sound familiar! More than once, while greatly struggling
with the DoG, I chucked a book across the room while proclaiming "That's not fair!"
From the beginning:
While studying the bible, there were many passages that didn't square up with
what I was taught(arminian; before I knew there was a difference).Providence
& some web links led me to Phil Johnson's stuff. Did an in-depth study of Romans. Reading Dr. White's "The Potter's Freedom" & Sproul's "Chosen By God" made it a done deal.
Like I said, I struggled greatly with the DoG. Had a problem with the "fairness"
of it all eek:stoooopid charge to level at God, in retrospect). Once I realized "is it 'fairness' you want, or rather
'mercy' that you desire", I was settled on the sovereignty of God. Then being overwhelmed by His sovereignty seemed like a wet blanket on my prayer life.
I was involved in the prayer ministry, but thought if He is that sovereign, why pray? When I finallyrealized that God not only ordains the ends, but also the means, the "wet blanket" was consumed by the fire of prayer!
After all this, THEN I find the "Amazing Grace/Calvinism" DVD...
Wish I would have found it sooner. It is so well done; I have given more than a few of these away to friends.
I grew up Arminian. Then, about a year and a half ago at an SBC church (very Dispensational, but vaguely Calvinistic) the pastor mentioned that those who believe were chosen by God, which was a newish concept to me. I asked him about what he said after the sermon and he gave just a few more verses to explain what he meant. That's where it started and remained for another two or three months, though my family left that church because unscriptural practices were taking place. We ended up attending a Reformed church for the first time. We have remained there since and have totally embraced the DoG. It has made Scripture make so much more sense! Praise God for His providence...
Most are unusual, in my experience
now, isnt that the truth!
Thirty-three years ago I was saved through the cassette tape ministry of S. Lewis Johnson at Believer's Chapel. He was a 5-pointer even though a dispensationalist. The bookstore at Believer's Chapel was full of Reformed works. I was turned on to B. B. Warfield and my uncle sent me a hardback copy of Pink's Sovereignty of God. Not long after that our mini-church did a study through Packer's Knowing God. It was a done deal.
After 33 years in the faith, I've only become more strongly commited to the doctrines of grace.
Articles at Monergism.com
I was never "churched" at all and had NO religion in my upbringing... but at around 23-24 years of age the Lord began calling me out of a life of darkness and drug abuse.. he simply granted me the desire to read the Bible, and used a friend of my Mothers who was a Christian to give me the good news. My desire for the word was INTENSE, literally overnight!! All of my studying of the word, online forums etc etc was Reformed based and Calvinistic.. God just led me down a path of clear doctrine, and gave me the ability to spot the ridiculous heresies and luke-warm milk being spewed in most pulpits. I feel so Blessed at how he gave me a LOVE for the word first.... when you love the Word, its easy to see what it truly says, instead of trying to make it say what you want it to say.
It was the Bible for me. When I first began reading it, at around 18-19 years of age, I had only heard the selected passages that are read in catholic churches, and was very confused about the purpose of religion in general. Then by the grace of God I opened the only Bible we had at home to see if the things were really that way. The more I read, the more I could see God's sovereignty in action, His mercy, and the many errors the priests had taught me.
It was only some time later, thanks to the Internet, that I discovered that what I believed was called "Calvinism". This led me to read more about Calvin, his Institutes, the 5 solas and the Doctrines of Grace.
For the word of God is quick, and powerful.
I accepted the doctrines of grace into my heart at church camp when I was 9 years old and recommitted myself to them at a Calvinist conference when I was 15, 17, 18, 21, 26, and 32 following a showing of "Cromwell".
I was raised in the Church of Christ. My mother's family goes all the way back to Alexander Cambell's time in the Restoration Movement. I have Primitive Baptist and Church of Christ roots on my father's side. I was raised in one of the Church of Christ 'meccas'. My father was a professor at one of the main CofC universities. Usually the CofC is Arminian, but there are still some remnants of its Reformed roots there among some folks. I was taught the party line of Arminianism, but Romans captured me while in college. I was a 'black sheep' who asked all of the wrong questions and often took the wrong positions. I was already on the way to becoming a closet Calvinist, in spite of the fact that I could out debate all the open Calvinists on campus. But, I couldn't out debate Scripture or its authour.
By the time I was out of college and married I was an Amyraldist. I really was in the closet though. I remember preaching through Romans, still my favourite epistle, and running head long into Romans Nine one evening and had to repent of my arrogant pride in thinking that I had it all figured out. From there on it was an interesting ride since I was working among the Christian Church (Independent) congregations at the time.
My dad taught me the doctrines of grace; I rebelled but they are true and I didn't get away from them.
I stumbled across the website letgodbetrue.com, and started listening to random audio sermons there.
Turns out, they are actually self admittedly Hyper-Calvnists and their sermons were the first time I ever encountered the doctrine of election!
We were in the process of making a new church directory at our church and I was looking at our old directory and kept noticing the number of families that were now divorced, at least two per page.
I started thinking, "Shouldn't Christians live differently than the world."
So I started looking into church discipline. As it turns out it seemed to me that only reformed churches even talk about church discipline. This lead me to men like Mark Dever and Paul Washer.
God opened my eyes and I then started seeing the Doctrines of Grace and sovereignty of God on every page of the Bible.
Finally a sermon by Paul Washer - Particular Redemption and Missions answered my last questions and doubts and the Puritan Board encourages me daily.
So it was the church directory that led me the Doctrines of Grace.
RC Sproul's radio program Renewing Your Mind. He kept mentioning Jonathan Edwards, the Puritans, the Reformation etc. I'd say and and . Then I started actually and said , then said . Now I'm and hopefully on my way to
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