Hyper Calvinism Defined?

Discussion in 'Calvinism & The Doctrines of Grace' started by JM, Jul 31, 2009.

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  1. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

    I think some would deny even that there is such a thing as hyper-calvinism, but I would defend the notion that hyper-calvinism exists and is a danger. That is the reason for my post above. All accusations of hyper-calvinism, therefore, are not just Arminians calling us all Hyper...but there are actual hyperists and their doctrines must be fought.

    There are signs and symptoms of hypercalvinism, which Phil Johnson has done a good job describing. The holders of hyper-calvinism teach false doctrine and are not merely another acceptable variety of calvinism.

    All house and no doors: A Brief Critique of Hypercalvinism

    A Primer on Hyper-Calvinism

    -----Added 8/1/2009 at 05:34:07 EST-----

    p.s. of course, a good follow-up question would be whether one can be a real hyper-calvinist and still be confessional.
  2. Semper Fidelis

    Semper Fidelis 2 Timothy 2:24-25 Staff Member

    My problem with a quick definition is that it is reductionistic. If we reduce "Calvinism" to a few simple ideas then it leaves other problem areas off the table that can be very problematic. Can a person even be considered a Calvinist and be un-Confessional on key points?
  3. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

    There are plenty of "un-confessional" calvinistic baptists. That is why some try to hold the copyright to the usage of the term "Reformed" -- to keep out those Calvy Baptists.
  4. jogri17

    jogri17 Puritan Board Junior

    He has made that statement in his history and theology of calvinism series. If you were to ask him today he would say not that he DENIED it (never said that) rather he spoke in the matter in such a way that either a 4 pointer or 5 pointer could be satisfied. Because this was not a major theological concern at the time he never had the time to develop a doctrine of the atonement as specific as was done in generation to come.

    -----Added 8/1/2009 at 06:10:27 EST-----

    Both are credo baptists and reformed baptists. I am a presbyterian so I have no dog in this fight about Gill. One can affirm God's using of Gill and his great works while at the same time acknowledging he had a theological inballance. I can do the same with Theodore Beza, Spurgeon, Calvin, Bavinck, Kuyper, no theologian is perfect. It is jsut that Gill's particular theology affirmed both in theory and practice the historical deffinition of hyper calvinism.
  5. the particular baptist

    the particular baptist Puritan Board Freshman

    I agree.

    Curt Daniel just comes across like he has it out for and makes a point in going after Gill and that raised the yellow flags for me.

    Tom Nettles is far more balanced and fair with respect to Gill.
  6. pm

    pm Puritan Board Freshman

    Hyper-Calvinist of Late

    In talking to some non-reformed, and even some reformed, Joshua's quote is indeed correct.
  7. pm

    pm Puritan Board Freshman

    Sovereignty of God

    You cannot over-emphasized the sovereignty of God.

    His sovereignty knows no limits.

    Where I think some have gotten into trouble, is they say God's sovereignty overrides what the Bible commands us to do. This say, since God is sovereign, we don't need to evangelize, or be obedient, etc, etc, etc.

    Why, if God is sovereign, do we need to do anything?
    I don't know, but the Bible commands it.

    Here we have two Biblical principles that seem to contradict each other,
    we trust that in God they are resolved in a higher principle we cannot understand.
  8. TeachingTulip

    TeachingTulip Puritan Board Sophomore

    Yes, this is resorting to a fatalistic attitude and lifestyle, and often the practice of antinomianism, as well. A philosophical cop-out, if you will.

    The duty of man is to faithfully submit his will to the sovereign will of God, and turn from sin, according to God's good and holy law, by the power of God's grace and mercies. There shouldn't be anything more mysterious to resolve.

    Jesus Christ manifested and exemplified this "higher principle" of perfected human accountability during His sinless incarnation, when He submitted His human will to the Father in all things. And the righteousness achieved by His perfect demonstration of human accountability has been imputed to all the sons of God.

    So, unless I am just being overly simplistic, I do not see any unsurmountable contradictions between the teachings of the sovereignty of God and the teachings of duty-faith (human responsibility.)

    As far as a believer practices faith in Christ's example, accomplishments, and mediation, through the enabling power of the indwelling Holy Spirit of Christ, by submitting his will to the Father while repenting from besetting sins . . . spiritual harmony and blessings are known.
  9. charliejunfan

    charliejunfan Puritan Board Senior

    A hyper-Calvinist is simply a Calvinist who is lazy, I think it's silly to define them other than that, because many could have the beliefs that are mentioned here and yet still evangelize and so on.
  10. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

    There are theological distinctions of hyper-calvinism. They may be lazy, but they are also theologically in error.
  11. Spinningplates2

    Spinningplates2 Puritan Board Freshman

    Who are some people who are modern hyper-calvinist? Where can we see leaders today saying, "I never witness, it's not my duty." No one is would say that in the Church today.(not that I have heard anyway)

    I have heard of one group somewhere on the upper east coast that think that only Calvinist are saved, is that who we are talking about? Because surly most people do not consider Gill and other in error.
  12. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

  13. Spinningplates2

    Spinningplates2 Puritan Board Freshman

  14. pm

    pm Puritan Board Freshman

    A.W. Pink

    Pink's thinking matured over his years. Toward the end of his life he did not want his earlier writings published. But after his death he become more popular and most if not all of his writing were published, even his earlier ones. In Iain Murry's biography he suggests only reading his writings after 1929.
  15. jogri17

    jogri17 Puritan Board Junior

    I really don't think that is a fair statement. Curt Daniel's phd was in this subject specifically on the connection between Gill and Hypercalvinism. He owns and has read every book written by Gill (many 1st editions picked up) and has discussed this matter with several big name theologians and there is a general concenus by historical theologians that Gill was indeed the prototype hyper-calvinist.

    -----Added 8/3/2009 at 07:18:08 EST-----

    The problem with eternal justification by faith alone is that: 1. its not taught in scripture. Also just note that PInk changed his mind on this issue.

    -----Added 8/3/2009 at 07:22:10 EST-----

    To paraphrase an arminian in this case: ''God is commanding you to repent and desires you to be saved this day. Choose this day whom you shall serve. Repent and believe the Gospel''. If you can't say this to anyone you meet then you are in some sense a hyper-Calvinist.
  16. jogri17

    jogri17 Puritan Board Junior

    With all due respect here I believe 100% you are wrong here. Just because God desires in one sense that ALL HUMANITY to be saved that doesn't mean that he is obligated to save all and plan to save all in election. A special desire and love to save his elect (foreknowledge) for reasons unknown and not dependent upon us. God love all of humanity in a very real and amazing sense! Common grace is not common; Dog's don't have it! It's a special gift God has given to a sinful hummanity just for being image bearers of God (something he did to us in creation through the Federal Headship of Adam).
  17. Prufrock

    Prufrock Arbitrary Moderation

    I want to second Josh's statements. God's general philanthropia should not be mistaken for some (actual, earnest) desire unto salvation of all men. The former ought certainly to be affirmed; while the latter is rightly denied. He stands willing and ready to save all and any who turn to him; he commands this of all men; he externally calls all who hear to him; he commends his salvation as good for man; but these do not add up to an actual, "internal desire" on God's part for all men to be saved.
  18. jogri17

    jogri17 Puritan Board Junior

    With all due respect sir, I never called anyone a hyper-Calvinist ever except for John Gill (and the crazy Phelps god hates ___X____ group). If I have have called anyone else that I would ask that you show me. My comments on Gill are based on my limited reading of Him (I freely confess that) but also upon my friend's Doctoral discertation Dr. Curt Daniel. Given its the only discertation that I know of (I checked) in either the english and french languages on this subject and it was approved by the University of Edinburgh and he has had conversations with men like Rev. Iain H. Murry, Dr. J.I. Packer, Dr. James M. Boice, Phil Johnson ect... and they were in agreement with his thesis I suggest interacting with that disertation. But I do not know how to be faithful to passages such as:

    25 At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. 26 Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight. 27 All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. 28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. Matthew 11

    Clearly God has choosen to reveal tem not ''unto the wise and prudent'' but has ''unto babes'' yet at the same time Jesus calls ALL to rest in Him.
  19. greenbaggins

    greenbaggins Administrator Staff Member

    Jogri, the problem here is that a simple saying "God wants all to come to a saving knowledge of Him" is not clear. Reformed folk make a distinction between the revealed will of God (or "preceptive") and the decretal will of God. One has to be clear about this distinction. It is quite correct to say that the Gospel should be offered to all without exception, and that it is a genuine offer of the Gospel. But that is not equivalent to an unqualified "God wants to save you" type of statement. This is where the confusion is coming in, if I am not mistaken. God does not take delight in the death of the wicked, but reveals in His word the offer of the Gospel to all. But this is not the same as saying God's decretal will desires all to be saved. This kind of care is important. Otherwise, we have a God who can't even bring about what He wants to have happen. The whole problem can easily be resolved by attaching a rider on such statements: "For all who believe, Christ died for them. Don't you want to be someone for whom Christ died?"
  20. jogri17

    jogri17 Puritan Board Junior

    a fair point but I would say that
    1. If the Gospel is to be offered to all and the Gospel has an objective content including the Work of Christ
    2. and Then if Christ died for all sufficiently for all those who would believe
    3. then logically we can tell sinners That Christ died ''so that sinners like you could be reconsilled to God and all you have to do is repent and believe the Gospel''.

    Your point is taken about wording however.
  21. Prufrock

    Prufrock Arbitrary Moderation

    In the following, I am elaborating upon an example presented by Charles Hodge, and modifying it to the current situation. Picture, if you will, a man who sets out in a rescue boat to save his family, which is drowning after their cruise ship sank. There are 4 members of his family; but the boat can hold 50. His purpose in setting out with the rescue boat is only to rescue his family (everyone else is already dead). The means by which he attempts to find his family and draw them unto him is by crying out through the water, "If you can hear my voice, come!" The fact that no one other than his family comes has nothing to do with the sufficiency of his boat (it has enough room for all). His purpose was to save his family; the objective soteric object was sufficient for all; and the means by which he carries out his purpose is by calling to all. Nevertheless, it cannot be said that the purpose of the rescue boat was in anyway to save all.
  22. greenbaggins

    greenbaggins Administrator Staff Member

    I don't have any problem with your wording it this way. It is the "God desires you to be saved" that seems a bit iffy on the wording, and open to misunderstanding. Cheers
  23. toddpedlar

    toddpedlar Iron Dramatist

    As Lane notes, your 3-point presentation above is not what you were saying before (i.e. "God wants to save you", said indiscriminately to every person you meet). What you've done above is present in those 3 points a reasonable statement which is consistent with the view that God does NOT desire to save every human being.
  24. jogri17

    jogri17 Puritan Board Junior

    Fair enough but I do not think we have to be theologially precise in all aspects of our lives (accurate and faithful is another matter... I once saw a tract that talked about the covenant of redemption... a bit unnecessary to give to the average person on the street). I do think it is helpful to use the language of ''different senses'' in talking about God's desires. I desire Cheese cake every day but I'm not going to buy it even though I could. I know the analogy falls apart but if we can have mutiple desires and levels and types I think that is being apart of being in the image of God. Surely God did not want National Israel to reject the messiah (the individuals involved in the covenant community) but clearly God ordained that to happen by the promise of the new covenant.
  25. greenbaggins

    greenbaggins Administrator Staff Member

    I believe that we should have a growing precision in how we speak no matter where we are. Being precise is pretty much the same thing as being clear (unless one is going over someone else's head: wisdom will help discern this one). Besides, if you are speaking on this discussion board and wish to avoid problems, precision is certainly advantageous.
  26. toddpedlar

    toddpedlar Iron Dramatist

    Your desire for cheesecake analogy is a false one - you are making God in your own image, quite frankly, by positing conflicting desires within the Godhead. God ordained that National Israel would reject the Messiah, and it came to pass. He desired that this be the way to the next step in the fulfillment of history. To talk about God "not wanting" something to happen but that in fact does is to make God out to have a problem in fulfilling his desires. This is to make him impotent.

    One of the problems with positing some sort of different levels of desire is that we don't talk that way on the street. Desire is desire - you want something or you don't. If you want it, you make your best effort to get it, and sometimes you fail (though not through a lack of wanting it).

    This isn't how God acts, AT ALL. Further, when you speak of desiring to save in an evangelistic situation, you are presenting desire in terms of "full willingness" - you aren't presenting that God loves you, but only, well, maybe he loves you sort of generally, or maybe he loves you specifically. No, you are presenting "love" and "desire" in a full sense - a sense you do not have the right to employ.
  27. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

  28. Spinningplates2

    Spinningplates2 Puritan Board Freshman

    Hyper-Calvinist are this modern ages Bigfoot. Everyone talks about them but no one shows me one.
  29. sealdaSupralapsarian

    sealdaSupralapsarian Puritan Board Freshman


    My name alone should let you know what type of Calvinist I am. There is a lot of hyper-Calvinist in the High and Low Calvinist congregations. When is the last time any of them actually witnessed to the ungodly? I bet many Calvinist haven't witnessed or engaged a person evangelistically all week. Month. Year. Since they been saved. Remember I said many and not all.

    Therefore, many of them are Hyper-Calvinist in Practice not in confession. Their surrounding community, local gov't, and etc are left totally unaffected and reached with the Standards and precepts of God.

    But, on the other note. I'm a RETARDED High Calvinist. :book2:

    Grace and Peace,
  30. jogri17

    jogri17 Puritan Board Junior

    I could show you several, but those persons would get offended and insist they are not.
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