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Whosoever Will: A Biblical-Theological Critique of Five-Point Calvinism Paperback – April 1, 2010
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About the Author
David Allen is dean of the School of Theology, professor of Preaching, and director of the Center of Biblical Preaching at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas.
Steve Lemke is provost and professor of Philosophy and Ethics at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.
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Top Customer Reviews
The book opens with some brief introductions concerning the historical background for the debate within the Southern Baptist Convention and Calvinism. It then contains a sermon by Jerry Vines on John 3:16. The sermon is okay but does a good job of opening the door for the debate.
Now let us examine each chapter from an Arminian perspective.
Chapter 2 Total Depravity by Paige Patterson
This is a good chapter and presentation on total depravity. Patterson does a good job of presenting an Arminian view of the doctrine (though he doesn't call it that). He shows that total depravity is biblical but it is not the doctrine as taught by Calvinists. He shows that while mankind was created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26-27), we are depraved (Ephesians 2:1-3) in the sense that there is nothing we can now do to merit eternal life apart from grace given to us in Christ Jesus.
An Arminian could read this chapter and agree with nearly all of this.
Chapter 3 Congruent Election by Richard Land
This was perhaps the chapter that I struggled with the most. Land seems to be teaching molianism though he never calls it that. Nonetheless, Land advocates a "middle knowledge" viewpoint that God knows all things and that since He knows all things then it follows that He does foreknow those who are His own.Read more ›
I learned quickly most of the discussion centered on logical argumentation and quoting various theologians, commentators, and authors. Of course everyone had their favorite passages of Scripture to quote in their favor. Yet often the arguments were reduced to 5-point Calvinist appealing to the Sovereignty and Glory of God, while others would appeal to a need for a genuine evangelistic message.
As I continued to study the issues I observed a few facts. First, I found myself in agreement with many 5-point Calvinists on some things. I also found myself in agreement with Non-Calvinists on some things. Second, I found that depending on the passage I would preach, my Calvinist friends often assumed I was a Non-Calvinist, while my Non-Calvinist friends assumed I was a Calvinist. Eventually I came to the conclusion the reason for this phenomenon was because I place a higher emphasis on Hermeneutics than on Systematic Theology. Therefore I determined not to be labeled by "points" in any theological system. Rather, I would prefer to sit down and discuss what I believe about specific passages of Scripture where the battle lines are often drawn.
Another fact came to surface in my examination of the subject. There were many authors who proposed good arguments for a 5-Point Calvinist position.Read more ›
One of the things that I hadn't considered before is that "Calvinists are more open to ecumenism." Then there's the statement, that this "may also explain why some Calvinists adopt open communion while many Baptists favor either closed Communion or even strict Communion." I had never thought to even link these two issues.
If there's something I can say against this book it is that the authors use some big words that most people have never used in a sentence, if they've heard them at all. That isn't necessarily a bad thing, but this book isn't light reading. If you're looking for a book that gives you a definition of Calvinism, this book is overkill.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A lot of appeals to emotion and some strange misunderstandings of Calvinism.Published 5 months ago by Greg Bahnsen Burner
A great book that shows that "Whosoever" will call upon the name of the Lord, shall be saved.Published 6 months ago by Richard Arwood
Great summaries of the issues that have been debated for ages. It will be interesting how history will regard the two part Romans finding by Brent Lay.Published 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
This particular book was a God-send. For years Calvinism has bothered me. Although the it seem irrefutable, from a theological perspective it still "felt" (for lack of a... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Jack
No agenda here, no spin; just clear concise plain truth. I would highly recommend to those trying to understand more about the nature of God's grace. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Howelcat
This book, edited by Drs. Allen and Lemke, is a critical resource in today's ongoing conversation regarding Neo-Calvinism. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Mark A Lindsay
Good read to understand the issue better, not so much to convince though. (It doesn't deal as well or with as many actual Bible passages as I had hoped.)Published 18 months ago by Joe Pliska