Unconditional Election (Five)

(More Bible Studies Available At www.marktabata.com)

It is written:

“He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.” (1 John 3:8)

And:

“Those who live sinful lives are disobeying God. Sin is disobedience.” (1 John 3:4 GW)

Since the Bible is clear that sin requires freewill in choosing to disobey God’s Law, and since the Bible is clear that Satan sins, then it is clear that Satan has freewill.

This is, of course, consistent with the teaching of the rest of Scripture. After all, the Word reminds us that some angels in the past have sinned against God (Genesis 6:1-4; Psalm 82:1, 6; 2 Peter 2:4). Job teaches us the same (Job 4:18), as does Jesus Himself (John 8:44) and Jude (Jude 1:6).

According to the Bible, Satan has freewill.

But, according to the teachings of Calvinism (in regards especially to his doctrine of unconditional election), Satan doesn’t really have freewill.

John Calvin wrote:

“And hence it appears that they are impelled by the sure appointment of God. I admit, indeed, that God often acts in the reprobate by interposing the agency of Satan; but in such a manner, that Satan himself performs his part, just as he is impelled, and succeeds only in so far as he is permitted….The sum of the whole is this, – since the will of God is said to be the cause of all things, all the counsels and actions of men must be held to be governed by his providence; so that he not only exerts his power in the elect, who are guided by the Holy Spirit, but also FORCES THE REPROBATE to do him service.” (John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion, 1.18.2 (Kindle Edition, emphasis added, M.T.)

These words are troubling, but not very surprising, since Calvin maintained that God had predestined not only Satan, but Adam and Eve, to sin as well:

“‘Nor ought it to seem absurd when I say, that God not only foresaw the fall of the first man, and in him the ruin of his posterity; but also AT HIS OWN PLEASURE ARRANGED IT.’” (John Calvin, Institutes., 4.16.6 (Kindle Edition, emphasis added, M.T.).

Now, which will you choose to believe: the Word of Almighty God-or the teachings of John Calvin?

Calvinism isn’t true.

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