You are listening to Search the Scriptures Daily, a radio ministry of The Berean Call.Still ahead, Dave and Tom continue their weekly in-depth study of the doctrine of salvation, please stay with us.
CONTENDING FOR THE FAITH
In this regular feature Dave and Tom respond to questions from listeners and readers of The Berean Call, here’s this week’s question:Dear Dave and TA, If Calvinism is true biblically, then how does it reconcile its belief that God predestined some to hell before they were born with Romans:5:12 and 5:18?
Dave, let me read Romans:5:12 and 5:18.Romans:5:12, “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.”And 5:18, “Therefore as by the offense of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.”Dave, it’s the “all men” that would make those verses, I would think, problematic for Calvinists, but how do they respond to this as you know?
Well, Tom, first of all, whoever wrote this in said that how they reconciled with God predestines some to hell before they were even born.Now the Calvinist, some would accept that, but many Calvinists would deny that.In fact some Calvinists would say, God didn’t predestine anybody to hell, He just let them go.Well, Christ didn’t die for them, so they couldn’t possible escapehell, could they?You don’t even have a gospel for them to believe.Well yeah, but God didn’t predestine them there. He just let them go, He’s not providing salvation for them.
But Dave, this verse says:“Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.”Isn’t this a condition necessary to be predestined to hell?Or let’s say even if they don’t, isn’t that a condition that needed to take place?In other words, this wasn’t something that God did before the beginning of time, which a Calvinist would tell you that’s the way it works.
Yeah, but all have sinned, so all, by nature are sinners, and because of that all are headed for hell.Okay.Now, let me find this verse we’re looking at.Let’s look at verse 18 again, because I thing that would be the toughest one for the Calvinist.Romans:5:18, “Therefore as by the offense of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.”Well, how does the Calvinist get around that?Same way they get around John:3:16:“For God so loved the world. He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believed in Him…” well yes, but you understand that means the world of the elect.So, when it says, “the free gift came upon all men unto justification.”Well, no, wait a minute, that doesn’t mean all men actually, it means all of the elect.You see, but whoever wrote this question—
Yeah, but Dave, what about just before that, “as by the offense of one judgment came upon all men” did it only come upon the elect?
No, see, you’ve got a parallelism here, you’ve got a tit for tat, or whatever, it’s the same as you have in Isaiah 53:“All we like sheep have gone astray, we have turned everyone to his own way.”And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.Now, who went astray?All mankind, all have sinned.Well then, all the ones who sinned their iniquity was laid upon Christ.And it does say, John the Baptist did say, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who beareth away the sins of the world.”But the Calvinist gets around it by saying, when it talks about those who have sinned—that’s everybody, but when it’s talking about those for whom Christ died, no, no, that’s only the elect, that can only be the elect, and then they can argue.Well, wait a minute, then that would mean that some of Christ’s blood was shed in vain.If not everybody get saved, but He dies for everybody, but it says He came to save sinners!But if He doesn’t save some of the sinners that He came to save, then the Bible isn’t true.So they have all kinds of arguments, Tom, but what do we come down to?Look, there are some tough verses, there are so many verses that are so clear, this is one of them, “All men unto condemnation, all men unto life.”It’s very clear.Or if we went to 1 Timothy:2:4, “Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.”Well, how do they get around that?Well, oh, that means all of the elect, some Calvinists would say, others like John McArthur, if you look in his McArthur Study Bible, he says, No, God has two wills, a will of desire and a will of decree.He really desires all to be saved, but He doesn’t decree for all to be saved.So now we have a God who—what?I thought He could do anything He wanted to do, and he really desires for all to be saved, but then He stopped short of bringing them to salvation?Tom, Calvinism is, do I dare to say, I think it maligns God.The Bible says God is love and we titled the book, What Love Is This?You say God loves everybody, but He doesn’t want everybody to be saved, or He wants them to be saved but He doesn’t save them?What love is this?