Table of Contents


You may click on the chapter titles to go to that chapter. My apologies! Until I get more “tech-savvy,” once you are in a chapter you will have to scroll to find the subsections you may be looking for. Thanks for your patience!


Introductory Thoughts

Chapter 1 – The Main Thesis: The Hermeneutical Divide

Chapter 2 – Sovereignty and Salvation: A Summary of the Non-Calvinist View

PART 1 – ASSESSING CALVINIST DOCTRINE AND THOUGHT

Chapter 3 – The Calvinist Theological and Soteriological Doctrines

  • A Brief Summary of Calvinist Theology and Soteriology
  • God’s Eternal Decree and Sovereignty
  • Predestination, Unconditional Election and Effectual Calling
  • The Calvinist’s TULIP Soteriology
  • A Preliminary Critique of Calvinist Determinism
  • Conclusions

Chapter 4 – Why the Calvinist Views of Sovereignty and Salvation Are Certainly False

  • William Lane Craig’s Five-Fold Critique of Calvinist Determinism

Chapter 5 – The Nature and Scope of the Calvinist Difficulties

  • Logical Concerns
  • Theological Concerns
  • Ethical and Moral Concerns
  • Existential and Epistemological Concerns
  • Ministry Concerns
  • Hermeneutical & Interpretive Concerns
  • Conclusions

Chapter 6 – What is at Stake? The Character of God and the Truth of the Gospel

The Character of God

The Truth of the Gospel

  • Walls, Dongell and Allen on the Importance of the Controversy
  • The Gospel is at Stake
  • Calvinists Claim Calvinism is the Biblical Gospel
  • Two Mutually Exclusive Gospels
  • Moody and Bryson on What is at Stake in This Controversy: The Gospel
  • The Evangelical Church in Intellectual, Soteriological and Gospel Denial
  • The Full Revelation of God’s Thoughts and Saving Will for Us “In Christ”
  • The Spirit as the Spirit of Truth Affirms the True Gospel
  • The Theological and Hermeneutical Divides
  • Critical Hermeneutical Concerns for Reformed Calvinists

PART 2 – INTERPRETATION AND HERMENEUTICS

Chapter 7 – The Indispensability of Reason and Logic in Biblical Interpretation

  • Milton S. Terry on Reason in Interpretation
  • The Proper Relationship between Faith and Reason
  • Norman Geisler on the Nature and Use of Logic
  • Calvinists Affirm Logic and Reason
  • Confusing Reason with Rationalism
  • The Mysteries of the Faith: Beyond Reason or Against Reason
  • Tolerance, Love and Respect is Not Incoherence or Theological Relativism
  • The Role of Philosophical Reflection and Moral Intuition in Exegesis and Hermeneutics
  • Baggett, Walls and Lewis on Whether God is Good as We know Goodness
  • Craig and Moreland on the Indispensable Role of Philosophy
  • Robert Audi: Reason, Logic and Justified Beliefs
  • Robert Audi: Natural Theology, Natural Reason and the Resolution of Religious Disagreement
  • Ravi Zacharias on Critical Thinking and Logic
  • David Allen, Leighton Flowers, Exegesis and Contradiction: 1 Timothy 2:1-6
  • David Allen, Leighton Flowers, God’s Love and Logical Entailment
  • Vincent Cheung, David Allen, Leighton Flowers and Logical and Moral Entailments
  • C. A. Campbell and the Role of Reason in Religion and Faith
  • C. A. Campbell: Defining a Contradiction and J. I. Packer’s Bad Advice
  • J. I. Packer: Paradox, Antinomy and Real Contradiction
  • Concluding Thoughts on J. I. Packer’s “Antinomy” and Suppression of Reason
  • Summary Remarks

Chapter 8 – Calvinist Attempts to Justify Sovereignty as Theistic Determinism

Determinism: The Fundamental Problem in Calvinist Thought

  • James Montgomery Boice
  • Gordon Clark
  • Sober Questions for Calvinists on Interpretive Coherence
  • A Non-Deterministic Understanding of God’s Sovereignty
  • A Case in Point: The Atonement

Compatibilism

  • John Feinberg on Compatibilism
  • Three Observations on Agency and Will
  • Compatibilism: Agency, Personhood and a Free, Individuated Will
  • Calvinist Compatibilism: Divine Preemption of the Human Will
  • William Lane Craig on Compatibilism’s Denial of Indeterminacy and Contingency

Jerry Walls: Compatibilism is a Real Contradiction

  • The Huge Implication
  • The Calvinist Conundrum
  • Consistent Calvinists
  • Inconsistent Calvinists
  • What is a Real Contradiction?
  • “Core Calvinism” and the “Bona Fide” Offer of the Gospel to All Persons
  • Curious Bedfellows and the Three Insuperable Difficulties for Calvinist Determinism

Other Calvinist Attempts to Explain the Problems Created by Their Determinism

  • Os Guinness: “The Bible Teaches Both” and “Use as Needed”
  • David Basinger Refutes the “Theologians of Paradox” and “Apparent Contradiction”
  • More on “Apparent” Contradiction
  • “Tensions” and the Content of “the Gospel”
  • The Flight to “Mystery” – Piper and Basinger
  • More on Divine “Mystery” – Keathley, Lewis and Sproul
  • “Mystery” Obscures God’s Saving Will and Purposes
  • Incomprehensibility – Piper, Craig and Tozer
  • What Does “Faith Seeking Understanding” Mean?
  • The Taxi-Cab Fallacy

The Futility of “Means” and “Second Causes” to Justify Theistic Determinism

  • The Futility of “Second Causes”
  • The Futility of “God Works through Means”
  • Calvinist Determinism, God as the Author of Sin and the Delusion of Ought
  • A “Second Cause” or Human Primary Cause?
  • Calvinist’s Can’t Complain

The Biblical Implausibility of an Inevitable Comprehensive Theistic Determinism

Can Incoherent Interpretations Be Valid Interpretations?

Chapter 9 – Reason as Problematic for Calvinist Interpretation

Schreiner and Ware – Logic or Exegesis: The False Dichotomy

  • Exegesis: An Excuse to Avoid the Probative Force of Logical and Moral Reflection
  • Faith Seeking Understanding or an a priori Doctrine Seeking Justification
  • Schreiner and Ware Ignore Logic and Morals, Claim Complexity and Flee to Mystery
  • Determinism Motivates to Pray
  • Determinism a Bulwark for Suffering
  • What Is the Purpose of Schreiner and Ware’s Book?
  • Non-Calvinists Can’t Tolerate Mystery?
  • Schreiner and Ware Know They Have Insurmountable Problems
  • Philosophy and the Authority of Scripture
  • The Popular Reactions to Calvinism
  • Helm, Calvin and Castellio on Reason and Common Sense
  • Schreiner and Ware, Logic or Exegesis: The False Dichotomy Continued

Piper on James 4: How Exegesis Devoid of Coherence Distorts the Meaning of a Text

  • Gospel Joy
  • Sacrificial Love
  • Fearless Witness
  • Confident Planning
  • What Piper Failed to Address

John Lennox on Exegesis, Theistic Determinism and Interpretive Consistency

  • Lennox and Carson: What Calvinists Fear Most – The Scrutiny of Logical Reflection and Moral Intuition

Philosophy as the Handmaid of Exegesis

Eric Hankins and Leighton Flowers: Logic Demands We Reject Calvinism

  • Hankins and Grudem: Reprobation as a Necessary Implication and Ways of Avoidance
  • Flowers, Hankins and Craig: Logical Contradiction is Proof That a Doctrine is Wrong

Schreiner Affirms and Denies Logic

The Evangelical Philosophical Society (EPS) to the Rescue

Chapter 10 – The Calvinist Suppression of Logical Reasoning, Moral Intuition and Common Sense

Calvin and the Suppression of Reason

J. I. Packer and the Suppression of Reason

  • J. I. Packer – Why Every Christian Believes in Calvinist Determinism and Some Just Don’t Know It.
  • Packer on Prayer and Salvation

J. D. Greear and the Suppression of Reason

Kevin DeYoung and the Suppression of Reason

R. C. Sproul, John MacArthur and Ligon Duncan and the Suppression of Reason

Peterson and Williams and the Suppression of Reason

Piper, Fatalism and the Suppression of Reason

Piper and the Suppression of Moral Intuition

Piper and the Suppression of Reason

Martin Luther and the Suppression of Reason

More on Luther and the Suppression of Common Sense and Natural Reason

Bryson, Feinberg and Palmer on Accepting the Nonsense of Calvinism

Richard Mayhue and John MacArthur and the Suppression of Reason

  • The Problematic Nature of MacArthur’s and Mayhue’s Interpretive Perspective

EXCURSUS: Non-Calvinist Alternative Perspectives on Romans 9-11

John Calvin – Subduing the Pride of the Human Spirit

Homer A. Kent, Jr. – Ephesians 1 and the Suppression of Reason

Calvinist Theological Proclivities vs. A Hermeneutic of Coherence

Schreiner, Ware and Luther Revisited

EXCURSUS: “Faith Seeking Understanding” With Input From C. S. Lewis

Hermeneutics, the Evangelical Church and the Gospel

Concluding Remarks and Hermeneutical Reflections

EXCURSUS: John Hendryx and the False Dichotomy


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