27 November, 2016


The Addition to the Westminster Standards by Modern Modified Calvinism

The Free Church at its 1971 Synod in Sydney adopted a Report which gives full support to the doctrine that God loves all men and desires their salvation, and thus made that doctrine an officially received doctrine in their Church in Australia.

That Report not only misinterprets the Scripture and Calvin’s exegesis of it; it wrongly quotes the writings of A. W. Pink in his book The Sovereignty of God, where he explains the will of God in the same terms as Calvin, when he defends the principle of the simplicity of God’s will, which the writers of the Report cannot support. The Report overlooks the fact that A. W. Pink in the eleventh chapter of his book has written the following:

One of the most popular beliefs of the day is that God loves everybody, and the very fact that it is so popular with all classes ought to be enough to arouse the suspicions of those who are subject to the Word of Truth. God’s love toward all His creatures is the fundamental and favourite tenet of Universalists, Unitarians, Theosophists, Christian Scientists, Spiritualists, Russellites, etc. To tell the Christ­-rejecter that God loves him is to cauterise his conscience, as well as to afford him a sense of security in his sins. The fact is, that the love of God, is a truth for saints only, and to present it to the enemies of God is to take the children’s bread and cast it to dogs.

The Free Church Synod Report is such that it attempts to completely refute the doctrine of Calvin’s Calvinism as defended in this essay. In its summary the Report quotes the Procurator as saying, “The point at issue is an open one on which individuals may hold their own views.” Such, however, cannot be the position in the Free Church because the doctrine that God loves only the elect and desires their salvation only, is forcefully rejected by the Synod Report. Since the Free Church Synod has adopted the Report, only one position is possible in that Church, namely, the one it wrongly upholds.

Sufficient has been brought forward in this essay to demonstrate beyond all shadow of doubt, that the doctrine in question is contrary to Scripture and is destructive of Calvin’s Calvinism. It is also clear that the Westminster Standards contain no statement whatsoever from which it may be assumed, that God loves the reprobate and desires their salvation.

The Free Church Synod Report of 1971 therefore constitutes a Declaratory Act of the Church in which it has officially received and declared a doctrine which is not laid down in the Westminster Confession or the Shorter and Larger Catechisms. This is a fact, which, despite all their attempts at denial, is irrefutable.

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