Answering Hot Topics – Am I a Calvinist?

Answering Hot Topics – Am I a Calvinist?

Am I a Calvinist? from Bret Capranica on Vimeo. As you might imagine, I am often asked about this.  Obviously, I have openly identifed myself with Calvinism in some regard, but when really pushed on this issue I don’t have any desire to publicly defend myself as a Calvinist.  That’s not because I’m ashamed of what I believe or with whom it may associate me, nor am I trying to duck behind a facade and not answer tough questions.  I really do have an aversion to many of these sorts of public theological labels. Admittedly, I am probably inconsistent in my aversion.  I don’t mind being called a Baptist, even though I abhor some of the caricatures, but I am not dogmatic in defending myself as an ardent Dispensationalist, though I would hold a number of its tenets. Why I have an aversion to theological labels. 1.  Labels tend to avoid biblical discussion. If I simply come out and publicly identify myself as a Calvinist or even a Dispensationalist, the conversation with many immediately ceases and we tend to go no further without any real biblical interaction over the issues.  Or, association with a particular label often leads to a mere discussion of whose syllogism is most logical.  Maybe that has its place, but not fundamentally.  Why begin, not with “are you a . . . “ but with “how do you understand this biblical passage, or that doctrinal implication.”  I have no interest in defending Calvinism per se.   I have great interest in discussing biblical texts and how we come to certain conclusions about them. 2.  Labels...
Science Has Buried God?

Science Has Buried God?

I was privileged to meet Dr. Andy Davis this past April.  Aside from his obvious brilliance, he has memorized vast portions of Scripture and is so amazingly and encouragingly insightful in his understanding of God’s Word.  Here is Dr. Davis, an MIT grad, discussing the question, has science buried God? [You Tube Video] HT:  Thabiti...
Baptist 21 Panel at SBC 2010

Baptist 21 Panel at SBC 2010

Here’s the video of the Baptist 21 panel held during the lunch break at this year’s SBC in Orlando.  This panel was discussing the Great Commission Resurgence report that was to be debated and eventually adopted by the messengers of the convention that afternoon.  Great stuff here: [Vimeo Video] HT: Justin Taylor B21 Panel at 2010 SBC Annual Meeting from Southeastern Seminary on...
God’s Glory? My Glory? Both?

God’s Glory? My Glory? Both?

This was a much needed exhortation to my heart this morning in my reading – what every ordinary pastor needs to consider very carefully: The higher we rise in the kingdom the more we shall be like Jesus in this humbling of Himself.  Childlikeness such as He exhibited is an invariable characteristic of spiritual advancement, even as its absence is the mark of moral littleness.  The little man, even when well-intentioned, is ever consequential and scheming, — ever thinking of himself, his honor, dignity, reputation, even when professedly doing good.  He always studies to glorify God in a way that shall at the same time glorify himself.  Frequently above the love of gain, he is never above the feeling of self-importance.  The great ones in the kingdom, on the other hand, throw themselves with such unreservedness into the work to which they are called, that they have neither time nor inclination to inquire what place they shall obtain in this world or the next.  Leaving consequences to the great Governor and Lord, and forgetful of self-interest, they give their soul to their appointed task; content to fill a little space or a large one, as God shall appoint, if only He be glorified. A.B. Bruce, The Training of the...
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