The Calvinist who calls himself gracerandywriter has posted an article called Evangelistic Drivel in which he lists several phrases “often used in modern evangelism that” (he claims) “are nowhere found in the preaching of Jesus and the apostles.”
My immediate reaction to this list:
“God can’t save you unless you let him.”
“And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.” (Acts 2:40)
Sorry, Peter, but some Calvinist jackass says your preaching ain’t scriptural.
But let’s get more in depth. Randy says that “Most of” the phrases he objects to “have entered the evangelical vocabulary through a theologically and biblically vacuous hymnology and not from a careful study of the New Testament record.”
It may very well be true that they have entered our vocabulary through hymns, since much of Christian teaching is done in song, as Paul the apostle instructed us that it should be!
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. (Colossians 3:16 KJV)
That a phrase has entered the Christian consciousness through song rather than by direct Bible reading does not immediately make the phrase wrong. Nor does the phrase not being found explicitly in Scripture word for word make it wrong, if indeed the concept is found in Scripture.
So lets look at some of the phrases that Randy loathes:
1. “Let Jesus come into your heart.”
Based on Revelation 3:20, and possibly also Colossians 3:16 already quoted above.
Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. (Revelation 3:20)
2. “Give Jesus your heart.”
But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: (1 Peter 3:15)
3. Open your heart, and let Jesus come in.
See #1 since this is really the same idea.
4. “Pray to receive Jesus.”
Yes, this one is unscriptural. But ultimately it was the Calvinists that brought this about. The Calvinist attack on baptism brought about its replacement by the “sinner’s prayer.” Scripture never asks us to “pray to receive Jesus” but rather commands us to be baptized. (Acts 2:38, Galatians 3:26-27, Mark 16:16, end of Matthew 28)
The Calvinists were the first to pull the switcheroo of replacing baptism with a prayer, but today they oppose the “Sinner’s prayer” vehemently, for the same reason they originally opposed baptism, which we will discuss in the next point.
5. “Decide for Jesus.”
Peter clearly asked the people at Pentecost to make a decision in Acts 2. He didn’t say anything as lame as “Decide for Jesus” but he said:
Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. 39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. 40 And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation. (Acts 2:38-40)
As a Calvinist atheist destroyer of true Christianity, Randy’s problem with the phrase “Decide for Jesus” is not that its lame and cliche, but that it clearly asks people to DO something. Why, if you DO ANYTHING (saith the Calvinist) then you are saving yourselves and cutting Jesus out! Strangely, Peter sees it both ways: You are saving yourself but only in the sense of letting Jesus save you, and Peter has no problem with commanding the people in those exact words “Save yourselves.” But since a Calvinist’s whole goal is to remove all the “do” content from Christianity and make it a worthless system of head-knowledge he can charge you money for (like having you take a class or buy his latest book on all the intricacies of his false system of predestination) he can’t have sayings like this.
The Calvinists therefore traditionally opposed baptism, since its “doing” something, which caused it to be replaced by the unscriptural “sinner’s prayer.” And now they’re attacking the “sinner’s prayer” because they just can’t allow Christians to “do” anything. They’ll let you have a vacuous Christianity that doesn’t manifest itself in any actions nor require any moral change in your life, but as soon as you attempt to “do” anything, they will try to rip you to shreds.
Because the Calvinist is an atheist, but one who is infiltrating Christianity, he is OK with the narrative content of Christianity (Jesus died for my sins) so long as it doesn’t in any way imply a preceptive content (that you have to do anything). The goal of the atheist is not to take away the story, but to take away the morality of Christianity.
6. “Jesus died for you.”
Well, he did!
But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. (Hebrews 2:29)
But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)
This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. (1 Timothy 1:15)
Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. (1 Timothy 2:4)
The Calvinist, because he is an atheist agent provocateur, wants to convince you that Jesus did NOT die for you. He wants you to think that Jesus only died for a special set of lottery winners. Why? So that you will get mad at God for being unfair, and become an atheist! The goal of the Calvinist is to convert as many Christians (or rather, drive) as many Christians as he can to atheism. And whoever he can’t drive to atheism, he will do the next best thing, convince them that Christianity has no “do” content (as we already discussed above).
7. “God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life.”
The God loves you part is true. See John 3:16. But the plan for your life part smacks too much of Calvinism quite frankly. It sounds like the moronic teaching that Rick Warren teaches in the Purpose Driven Life that God has pre-scripted our whole life ahead of us. It is therefore rank heresy, and yet another Calvinist attempt to create fellow atheists.
8. “Smile, God loves you.”
As opposed to the Calvinist message of “Frown, God hates you.”
9. “God hates the sin, but loves the sinner.”
This one is true to a certain extent. God loves everyone and wants everyone to repent. He says this plainly in Ezekiel 33:
Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel? (Ezekiel 33:11)
God does not want to have to damn anyone. He wants everyone to turn from their evil way, so that they can have eternal life. But he knows not everyone will. And he even hates those who refuse to do so. He loves them in the sense that he wants them to repent so he doesn’t have to punish them, but he hates them because by refusing to repent they are forcing him to punish them:
The Lord trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth. (Psalm 11:5)
As we said above, he hates the wicked because by refusing to repent he is forcing God to punish him, which God doesn’t want to do since God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked but would rather that he repent and be saved.
10. “God can’t save you unless you let him.”
Everything we just talked about, including the preceding point, proves this statement to be true. But this statement from Jesus makes it altogether clear:
“…Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” (Luke 13:3, Luke 13:5)
What is keeping you from being saved, O Calvinist? Not that God had Jesus only die for Arminians and corporate electionists! No sir, for Jesus died for all humanity! Not that God is a jerk who won’t give you the grace you need, for Paul says “the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men” (Titus 2:11)!!!
Why then are you not saved, O Calvinist? What is preventing you? AH! That you refuse to repent. “…Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” (Luke 13:3, Luke 13:5)
So God can save you, but only if you let him. Jesus is at the door of your heart knocking. Let him in. Let go of your Satan worship, denounce Calvinism, and let Jesus into your heart.