Questions tagged [reformed-theology]

A branch of Protestantism emphasizing the sovereignty of God and his covenants with humanity. Also known as Calvinism.

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What is the Biblical basis for Total Depravity?

Calvin, among his other points starts with the point that we are totally depraved and sinful from birth. What is the Biblical basis for this point?
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How would Reformed Christians deal with homosexual marriage of individuals prior to their conversion to Christianity?

I've been pondering this for several weeks and I believe that the reformed church (really, the church in general) is woefully unprepared to answer the following question: How would the church deal ...
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“God desires all men to be saved” from a Calvinist perspective?

If I understand correctly, Calvinists believe that God selects certain people for salvation based solely on His will... that is, the selection has nothing to do with the people themselves. My ...
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4answers
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Why are only some predestined?

Specifically with respect to the Westminster Confession of Faith (1646)... Chapter 3, paragraph 3 and 4, where it states: III. By the decree of God, for the manifestation of His glory, some men ...
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2answers
903 views

What is the Biblical basis for Limited Atonement?

Calvin, among his other points, includes the point that Atonement is Limited; i.e., that Christ's death was sufficient for all but only effective for the elect. What is the Biblical basis for this ...
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4answers
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How does free will fit with the doctrine of predestination?

The Calvinistic doctrine of predestination states that God has chosen who will live and who will die. That Christians are unconditionally elected for salvation or damnation. However, how does this ...
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3answers
768 views

What is the Biblical basis for Unconditional Election?

Calvin, among his other points includes the point that we are Unconditionally Elected and chosen by God alone and nothing we can do can help or hurt this fact. What is the Biblical basis for this?
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4answers
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What is the difference between Reformed and Presbyterian

I feel like this is a dumb question, but maybe, just maybe, I'm not the only one confused by this. Maybe if I'm willing to stick my neck out and look stupid, the answer will be here for those poor ...
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1answer
595 views

What is the Biblical basis for Irresistible Grace?

Calvin, among his other points, includes the point that when we are saved, we are irresistibly drawn to God and that there is nothing we can do to prevent this or cause this. What is the Biblical ...
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Difference between Augustinianism and Calvinism

Is there a difference between Augustinianism and (Five Points) Calvinism as they relate to the doctrine of salvation? If so, what is the difference?
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How are the Calvinist, Arminian and Lutheran conceptions of Total Depravity different?

I'm quite sure I understand the concept of Total Depravity, but I'm not sure it's viewed exactly the same in different doctrinal frameworks that support it. I've spent a lot of time among Lutherans, ...
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1answer
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What is the difference between the doctrines of “Perseverance of the Saints” and “Eternal Security?”

The terms "Perseverance of the Saints," "Eternal Security," and the phrase "once saved, always saved" are a bit fuzzy in my head. I understand the general concept behind them, but what are the ...
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What is Common Grace?

The term "Common Grace" is often thrown around in reformed circles. What is this concept? What is the scriptural basis for the belief?
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Do Calvinists believe they know whether they are saved?

My question is pretty straightforward: Do Calvinists believe they know whether they are saved? This might seem like a strange question at first glance, so let me explain why I'm asking. From what I ...
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2answers
606 views

Calvinist perspective on Luke 18:18-30

Luke 18:18-30 (NIV) tells the story of the "rich young ruler" who asked Christ what he must do to inherit eternal life: 18A certain ruler asked him, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal ...
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3answers
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According to Calvinism, why does God give mercy to some and not to others?

So according to Calvinism as I understand it... ...God has chosen from eternity to extend mercy to those he has chosen and to withhold mercy from those not chosen. Those chosen receive salvation ...
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3answers
818 views

How do Calvinists interpret 2 Peter 1:10?

Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. - 2 Peter 1:10 (ESV) This seems to suggest that we have ...
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412 views

According to reformed theology, why are certain important doctrines not “obvious”? [i.e. why does the Westminister Confession even exist?]

Consider the important doctrines of: divinity of Christ doctrine of Trinity doctrine of predestination Consider in general, that the Westminister Confession is shorter than most books of the Bible. ...
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How do “once saved, always saved” advocates explain the Parable of the Sower?

How do advocates of a strict perseverance of the saints doctrine explain the Parable of the Sower? That is, how does someone explain it who believes that once someone is saved they cannot lose that ...
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According to Reformed Theology do non-trinitarians go to hell?

According to Reformed theology, if one believes that Yeshua (Jesus) is the Messiah and the son of God (but they deny that he is God and the second person of a triune god), is this person sent to an ...
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What is the difference between a covenant and a contract?

Specifically as used by the Reformed theological tradition, what is meant by the term "covenant"? How is this different than other forms of agreements under assorted names in English like contract, ...
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3answers
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Do Calvinists rejoice in the destruction of sinners?

I recently re-read "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" and I was struck by the pleasure Jonathan Edwards seemed to have taken in describing the imminent destruction of sinners: The God that ...
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Did John Calvin teach that God creates certain souls only to be destroyed?

From what I understand, Calvin not only taught, but effectively systematized the doctrine of "predestinarianism," which holds that: God for His own glorification, and without any regard to original ...
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Why must God reach the fullness of Glory (reformed theology)?

Reformed theology stresses that God created the universe for one purpose: to glorify him fully. And to reach the fullness of Glory, God must demonstrate all that would glorify him. This means that to ...
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1answer
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Origin of the Reformed “Marks of the True Church”

In Reformed Theology, "the marks of a true church" are often delineated, to the effect of: Church discipline Teaching/preaching Administration of the sacraments (These are the marks often denoted in ...
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1answer
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Were Luther and Calvin Aphthartodocetists?

Julian of Halicarnassus (d. 527) was condemned at a council in Constantinople in 536. In denying a distinction between ousia (common essence) and physis (particular nature), Julian was faced with the ...
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What is the origin of the Covenant of Grace?

In Covenant Theology the Covenant of Grace refers to an overarching theological covenant which God made on the basis of grace. The various Biblical covenants such as Abraham's, the Mosaic/Deuteronomic,...
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894 views

How do Calvinists explain God's wanting no one to perish and electing some to judgement?

I have two ideas that have support in the bible, but seem to contradict! Please help! I am looking for a Calvinist/Evangelical answer. These two verses have the general effect that God does not want ...
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If God “shows no partiality,” how do Calvinists defend predestination?

There are a number of verses in the Bible that say that God is "not partial" (Deuteronomy 10:17) or that he "shows no partiality" (Romans 2:11, ESV). How do Calvinists square such verses with their ...
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1answer
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How do Reformed Baptists view Dispensationalism?

What is the "official" stances of Reformed Baptists on Dispensationalism? What biblical base do they claim for such views? If, as a group, they would generally not teach Dispensationalism, are there ...
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2answers
748 views

Did the church fathers or OT talk about the visible and invisible church?

In the Reformation, the doctrine of the distinction between the visible and invisible church was important in the Reformers' claim not to have started a rogue church. I am wondering... Given that it ...
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1answer
479 views

How do Reformed Churches justify applying the 4th commandment to the Lord's Day?

It is understood why Sunday is the Christian celebration every week, but it is not clear how the classically reformed justify applying the fourth commandment concerning the Sabbath, which was given to ...
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1answer
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How do non-sacramental denominations identify and ordain pastors and other leaders?

I'm aware that not all Christian denominations call the leaders/pastors of local congregations "priests" (as Catholics, Orthodox, some Anglicans, and apparently some Lutherans do, perhaps among others)...
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Did Calvinism borrow its scheme of predestination from Valentinian Gnosticism?

How does the Calvinist notion of predestination differ from that of the Valentinian Gnostics' predestination? There are several sources outlining the Valentinian Gnostic system (anti-heretic "church ...
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2answers
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What did Calvin think about Knox's “Monstrous Regiment”?

Scottish Protestant reformer John Knox (1514-1572) is the author of the work of vile misogyny, The first blast of the trumpet against the monstruous regiment of women (1558). In the book, Knox rails ...
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1answer
702 views

How do Calvinists account for Calvin's statements on atonement?

Calvinism gets its name from John Calvin. One of the tenets of Calvinism is "Limited Atonement", the idea that Christ died for the elect, not for all mankind. However, this does not appear to be what ...
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Other than Augustine, which Church Fathers have directly influenced John Calvin's teaching of “double-predestination?”

"By predestination we mean the eternal decree of God, by which he determined with himself whatever he wished to happen with regard to every man. All are not created on equal terms, but some are ...
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Are Calvinism and Arminianism compatible?

This question may seem ridiculous at first glance, but bear with me... As I learn more about Calvinism and Arminianism I am struck with the notion that they are each based on Scripture, and each ...
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1answer
295 views

Why does Calvinism need the doctrine of Perseverance of the Saints if it believes in Unconditional Election?

As I understand it, Unconditional Election means that God has already chosen who will be saved. Unconditional election is God's choice to save people regardless of their sin or any condition. Why ...
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2answers
984 views

What is supralapsarianism?

One of the main reasons Jacobus Arminius split with Calvinism was his opposition to the doctrine of supralapsarianism taught by his colleagues at Leiden University. What is supralapsarianism? Is it a ...
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Do Calvinists believe that God is the author of evil?

"Arminius taught that Calvinist predestination and unconditional election made God the author of evil." -Wikipedia I have heard Calvinism presented in a similar way, where God has designed everything ...
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1answer
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What was at issue in the Clark-Van Til controversy?

In the 1940s, Cornelius Van Til and other professors at Westminster Theological Seminary first tried to block Gordon Clark's entry into the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, then later put him on trial ...
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488 views

Did John Calvin discourage harmonies in congregational singing?

In many traditional Reformed churches, the songs found in hymnbooks and psalters (collections of Psalms set to music) are written with four parts: a melody/soprano line on the top, and alto, tenor, ...
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2answers
276 views

What was the point of the third article of Remonstrance?

The other four points of the Remonstrants seem to articulate significant departures from Calvin's soteriology, but not this one: THIRD ARTICLE. Saving Faith.—Man in his fallen state is unable to ...
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1answer
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Do Calvinists believe that God does not love the world, but only the elect?

I seem to remember hearing somewhere that at least some Calvinists believe that, contrary to what seems to be a literal reading of John 3:16 and other verses, that God, in fact, does not love the ...
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What is the Calvinist view of God's sovereignty?

I have many Calvinist friends, and when we discuss matters of theology or doctrine, almost inevitably, the conversation turns to them saying something like "That's because of God's sovereignty," or "...
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According to Two Kingdom theology, could a man hold both secular and spiritual office?

The so called Two Kingdom view of the separate institutes of secular state vs the church identifies a fairly clear boundary between the authority of each: one demanding some compliance with a nominal ...
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When did Jesus assume human nature?

Did Jesus Christ, the second person of the Trinity, only assume impersonal (anhypostatic) human nature (body and soul), during incarnation, in which he was born of Mary? Or, did he already have human ...
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1answer
183 views

Is there a recognised soteriology that combines selective election for some and general election for everyone else?

Are there any Christian groups or denominations that hold a belief in selective election to salvation, in that some individuals are specifically and irresistibly called (Noah, Moses, 12 desciples, ...
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What is the Biblical argument against Limited Atonement?

The "L" in the TULIP acronym of Reformed Theology stands for Limited Atonement, which the Pocket Dictionary of Theological Terms defines as: Sometimes called 'particular redemption,' the view that ...