Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Hyper-Calvinism: A Definition - Clark

. . . The Presbyterian Journal, November 18, 1981, includes an article by the Reverend Donald A. Dunkerley entitled “Hyper-Calvinism Today.” This author is to be highly commented because he knows what hyper-Calvinism is and he states the definition clearly. Most popular writers and preachers neither state nor know it. Hyper-Calvinism is “that view of Calvinism which holds that ‘there is no world-wide call to Christ sent out to all sinners, neither are all men bidden to take him as their Savior.’ Hyper-calvinists . . . maintain that Christ should be held forth or offered as Savior to those only whom God effectually calls” (14).

It seems that there are such people, people who are decisively called Hard-shell Baptists. There must be very few such, and I do not know of any Presbyterians who qualify. Dunkerley himself acknowledges that they are “an almost negligible minority.”

. . . In spite of his acknowledgment that hyper-Calvinists are an almost negligible minority and after describing various forms of evangelism, he complains that “we lack and urgently need in our day [a] compassionate evangelism.” Well, this is true, but in its context it seems to mean that hyper-Calvinism is almost the worst aberration of the twentieth century. Perhaps of the eighteenth century also, for Whitefield – whom he cites with approval – hardly evinces the evangelistic methods he seems to require.

Of course, the Bible commands us to preach the Gospel to all men. To a hyper-Calvinist who insisted that a minister should preach the Gospel only to the elect, Clarence Edward Macartney, if I remember correctly, replied, “You point out to me which persons are the elect, and I shall confine my preaching to them.”

But when Mr. Dunkerley wants to tell everyone that “God loves you,” I wonder how he can defend that phrase when not only Jacob, but Esau also is in the audience. 

Clark, G. H., (1996). The Atonement (pp. 136-137).  Hobbs, New Mexico: The Trinity Foundation 

No comments: