A voicehearer’s path ~

Posts tagged ‘good and evil’

Calvin or Arminius ~

I was certain I had written a post about these two influential theologians before, but it is apparently one I was unhappy with, and discarded. Calvin’s world was a world where God predetermined all that happened, even those things we perceive as evil come from God as part of an eternal plan. With Calvin, the only people that are in Heaven were determined from before their birth, and those in Hell are the same, determined before they were even conceived. When one argues that this eliminates free will, the debate is that, no, God just knows who will choose the right way, he doesn’t make you choose.

Unfortunately, my problem is that Calvinists want it both ways. Either God is the “Boss” and takes the credit and blame for all that happens on Earth (in which case God is both devil and angel), or God is Creator giving free will and allowing the created to choose whether they will love or not. This is an old debate, and I most certainly will not be the one to solve the issues on this page, but I would very much like to throw a couple of thoughts out there.

First of all, let me reiterate that I am a reincarnationist, there were and are Ivrit (Jews) who were such, as well as those who did not believe in reincarnation, so this is also an old debate. I do not buy all of Paul’s theology, and it is Paul’s writings that form the basis of Calvinism, i.e. Calvinism is Paulism. Paul’s theology was thoroughly influenced by Greek and Roman thinking. What this has done is marked main line Christianity with all manner of hidden little bits of treasure that hearken back not to Judaism, but to Paganism, while at the same time prancing around and pronouncing that those dirty pagans are all doomed to an eternity in Hell, and it was predetermined!

Then there is the idea that God, who is, from both the perspectives of Calvin and Arminius, eternally and truly good, yet, in Calvinism brings forth things we perceive as evil to bring about a greater good. So, in Calvinism Stalin killed 20 million people in order to bring some good end into the world, or maybe even Hitler’s puny 12 million ought to be counted in here. By Calvinistic thought, these were both emissaries of God. Sorry, you may buy that, I don’t. I do however buy that God is so merciful that, should either man have turned around at any point and gave up their murderous pursuits, they would have been welcomed with open arms {A little reminder, I happen to believe that the sin against the Holy Spirit is calling evil good, and good evil, so it is quite possible that Calvinists are treading on thin ice, eh?)

Now, even though my belief system more closely emulates that of Arminius than that of Calvin, ( truth to tell, I am probably Hamayim more than any totally Christian theology.) I do believe that Hashem can bring about good things from the darkest evil man can concoct. I believe that Hashem is more powerful and bigger than anything that human mind can comprehend. But I also believe that Hashem created and released us into the universe with true free will.

That means that we can make the choice to love or fear. Note, I did not say love or hate. Hate is not the opposite of love, fear is. Every shortcoming, whether just a mistake in thought or a truly dark and evil deed can be traced back to fear! Hate is even a result of fear. I believe that God is love, and that everyone who loves is born of God, and those who do not know how to love do not know God. {1John 4:7-8} That has nothing to do with labels like Calvinism, Arminianism, Buddhism, Taoism, Pentecostalism, or even antidisestablishmentarianism! It has to do with knowing the very essence of God in a very personal way that decries the preaching of any evangelist anywhere. If I believe Calvin, I believe that God is incapable of spreading that love without Christians spreading the Gospel. Excuse me, do you see what you have contrived, here? Your Almighty God that you insist I limit by saying he gave me and all other humans complete free will, has left the fate of mankind in the hands of a few country preachers. I don’t think so!!

Now, I also believe that Hashem is quite capable of picking you or me up by the bootstraps and sending us through a meatgrinder without the mortal assistance of any human should God wish to do that. I believe that God is so huge that The Ancient of Days is greater than all the universes in existence. I also believe that Hashem exists in that space between one’s in breath and one’s out breath. God is Awesome, literally. You have no clue what you are saying about my perspective of God. I also believe that when a person of any persuasion from Buddhist to Baptist puts their life in the hands of the Almighty, that Hashem is able to turn around all circumstances in their lives.

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