Dear, dear, i dare say i have become a bit too aware of the feuding factions of Christendom and my charismaticopentecostal simplicity of simply loving Jesus is gone forever. Blame it on all those cantankerous Calvinist basement bloggers oozing theological smugness and biblical bile. Blame it on the scarcity of ‘cheweonable’ pentecostal theological works and the side effects of my consequent excessive absorption of Systematic Theologies of the decidedly Calvinist hue. Indeed it was the latter that sent me scurrying off to google to ferret out whatever Pentecostal Systematic Theologies were out there. Be ye not unkind, it is not a contradiction in terms.
Well, lo and behold, my search took me to the village store, read global, Amazon where else, where i happened upon this little book, ‘Why I am not a Calvinist’; interesting i thought and proceeded to read the description which i reproduce forthwith.
“What’s wrong with Calvinism? Since the Reformation, Calvinism has dominated much of evangelical thought. It has been so well established that many Christians simply assume it to be the truest expression of Christian doctrine. But Calvinism has some serious biblical and theological weaknesses that unsettle laypeople, pastors and scholars alike.God is sovereign. All evangelical Christians–whether Arminians or Calvinists–have no doubt about this fundamental truth. But how does God express his sovereignty? Is God a master puppeteer, pulling our strings? Or has he graciously given his children freedom to respond to his love?In this eminently readable book, Jerry L. Walls and Joseph R. Dongell explore the flaws of Calvinist theology. Why I Am Not a Calvinist is a must-read for all who struggle with the limitations of this dominant perspective within evangelical theology.”
See, I knew it, we are indeed numerous who struggle, that’s us, we don’t vociferate, point fingers or breathe the dreaded word ‘heeeeresy’, we simply ‘struggle’ with the ‘limitations’, of Calvinism; ‘dominant’, that rankles, well, on the web at least. I thought Pentecostals were taking over the world, well maybe we still are (am i one?) we just don’t write. Well, my triumph was short-lived, blame my wandering eyes, i immediately caught sight of another book, similar, with the title, ‘Why i am not an Arminian’ , the description and photo of which i reproduce forthwith.
“What’s wrong with Arminianism? Arminian theology is sweeping through the evangelical churches of North America. While most Arminians are good, sincere, orthodox Christians, authors Robert A. Peterson and Michael D. Williams contend that aspects of Arminian thought are troubling both biblically and theologically. In particular, they argue, Arminians have too lofty a view of human nature and an inadequate understanding of God’s sovereign love in Christ.Why I Am Not an Arminian explores the biblical, theological and historical background to the Calvinist-Arminian debate. The irenic nature and keen insight of this book will be appreciated by laypeople, pastors and scholars alike.”
Wow! Calvinism has ‘biblical and theological weaknesses that unsettle laypeople, pastors and scholars’, in short everyone, ‘Arminianism is troubling both biblically and theologically’, and the book exposing Arminianism will be ‘appreciated by laypeople, pastors and scholars alike’, who, the same ones previously ‘unsettled’ by Calvinism?. One more – ‘Calvinism is the dominant perspective within evangelical theology’ while ‘Arminianism is sweeping through evangelical churches’. If this be true, things do look bad, surely the stage must be set for yet another theological battle of cosmic proportions? A quick glance, those wandering eyes again, at the sparring publishers’ names (and authors of these fighting words) ‘Intervarsity press’, one and the same; so no ideology at stake here, only commerce. The theological meltdown may have to wait. We must alas now devote our considerable energies to winning people to Christ.
Still have not found my Pentecostal Systematic Theology.