On a web-site run by a Brother Galyon, my name has been repeatedly dropped in association with alleged Hyper-Calvinists. However, Brother Galyon has now produced a list of what he considers Hyper-Calvinism and I find I disagree with every point. This should be sufficient proof for my brethren to stop calling me a Hyper-Calvinist and an Antinomian but when I protest against such slander, my protests are ignored. I thus sent the following explanation of my views to Brother Galyon’s blog-site a number of weeks ago but it has still not been passed by the moderator. Before dealing with Galyon’s points I must stress that I certainly do not strive to exceed Calvinism, indeed, I have argued for over forty years that Calvin was never fully Reformed and that he greatly lags behind the English and German-Swiss Reformers in Reformed acumen. He sought merely to compile the works of the these Reformers for the French reading public, which was a great task but he was thus no original Reformer and departed from the Reformation on a number of salient issues. For instance, he remained an Aristotelian by firm conviction as witnessed by his dissecting Christian doctrine like a butcher chops up a cow. Calvin’s bits and pieces of doctrinal mincemeat can never be put together again by lovers of his work so that they may again form a sound Christian, synergized, all-round Body of Divinity. This is why modern parachurch movements like the Banner of Truth, Founders’ Journal, Reformation Today etc., who profess to be staunch Calvinists, are all at sea in doctrine and Christian outreach. Now the Banner even condemns a Word ministry flat out and they see exegetical exposition as a hindrance to their belief. They dispense with the Bible and live by humorous (to them) stories, the Institutes and the Westminster Confessions with their Baptist imitations.

     Oddly enough, it is High Calvinists such as those in the Banner of Truth leadership who spread the rumours publicly that I am a Hyper-Calvinist though they themselves believe, like Calvin, that God decreed and appointed Adam to sin. If God authored sin, then man’s fall is a farce and so is man’s salvation. So let us take a look at your list of Hyper-Calvinistic attributes which quite relieve me of being sworn at by the Banner Boys as a Hyper:

1.      God is the author of sin and evil

    What a sinful and evil statement! Not even the devil is responsible for man’s sin. Man has solely himself to blame.

2.      Human beings have absolutely no will whatsoever

     Anyone who says this has never had children, taught school or preached the gospel. Do holders of this error, whom I have happily never met, ignore all the man-willed evil in the world?

3.      Individuals are not responsible for their own decisions and actions

     So when God says that the soul who sins shall die, is God condemning someone who is innocent but cursed by a guilty God who forced sin on the man? Blasphemy! This is, however, the doctrine of the Banner of Truth leaders who speak of God decreeing Adam to sin but they deny that God decrees the justification of His Son’s Bride. These are the very hypocrites who write in their magazine and place on their websites that I am a Hyper and an Antinomian.

4.      Justification occurs in eternity, not in time

     If justification is not activated in time what is the use of preaching in time that the just shall live by faith and therefore repentance and faith must occur?  Again, I have never come across anyone who practiced this idea. However, we cannot separate time and eternity like this as if what happens in eternity does not happen in time. Our eternal God dwells in eternity but is active in time. Therefore, though God justifies from eternity, it is aimed at the person who is a man of time until called to his Heavenly inheritance when time shall be no more.

5.      God does not command all people to repent of sin

     I cannot imagine anyone believing this if he has the same Bible as I have.

6.      Not everyone is required to believe upon Christ Jesus for salvation

     This even beats the others as a most unclear statement. What is meant by ‘required’. Do these alleged Hypers mean ‘commanded’? There is a great difference in meaning between these words. I am for the Biblical version. However, how does a person who has never heard the gospel ‘believe upon Christ Jesus for salvation’? People who make statements which they have not thought through themselves would be better keeping their mouths shut until light dawns. Most of the accusations Hypers make against their more balanced brethren merely embarrasses them when they are asked to explain themselves. They should leave of thinking for the thoughtful.

7.      God creates unbelief in the hearts of the non-elect

     I know God hardens hearts at times for a particular purpose but cannot believe that all those who have sometimes been hardened for a time are permanently marred by the experience. Show me a Christian who has not experienced hardness of heart. Hardness, by God’s grace, does not always mean permanent unbelief. I never give up hope for a soul until he writes and tells me he is in hell.

8.      Assurance of election must be sought prior to repentance and faith        

     This is like saying you must be saved before you are saved. How can one without repentance and faith, both given by the Holy Spirit, know anything about either assurance or election?

9.      Election is evident simply by a profession of faith, regardless of sanctification (antinomianism)

     Those whom God calls, he elects, gives them repentance and faith, justifies and sanctifies them. The statement, again, is Roman Catholic, Aristotelian thinking. One cannot separate election from any other Christian doctrine as it is all one. All God’s blessings in Christ are ours in toto and not bit by bit.

10.  Saving faith is equivalent to believing predestination (only “Calvinists” are Christians)

     This is another instance of where Calvin got it wrong. Predestination cannot be viewed outside of Christ’s total atoning and saving work. Anyone who bases election and predestination on the command of the Father acting contrary to the Son and the Holy Ghost may be a polytheist but he is not thinking as a Christian.

11.  Limited atonement must be believed in order to hear the gospel and be saved

     This would be an artificial limiting of the atonement. The scope of the atonement is the work of the Godhead and Hypers have no part in the decision-making. Besides, we are not Gnostics.

12.  Salvation is not connected with the “visible” Church

     A most odd statement. Did not Christ send out the 12 and the 70, even, to enhance their visibility, telling them what to wear? So, too, Hypers are always making themselves all too visible. I wish they would really fade into invisibility!

13.  Scripture is to be interpreted only by individuals, not by the Church

     I thought the Holy Spirit was our Interpreter. Have I missed some extra-Biblical revelation?

14.  Evangelism is unnecessary, or even wrong

     Evangelisation is the life-blood of the gospel. Every Christian is a missionary. The Great commission is for every Christian irrespective of age, status, gender or occupation. Ever Christian is fitted out with the credentials of an Evangelist. Parachurch missionary societies are, however, another matter.

15.  The sacraments are not a means of grace, but rather obstacles to salvation by faith alone

     Rubbish! All the gospel, of which the Lord’s Supper and baptism are parts, is a means of grace. Thus, if there are Hypers who go against what Christ ordains, they become obstacles to the Christian faith.

16.  God has no love whatsoever for humanity in His providence (common grace)

     Then why did Christ die for any of humanity? If God hates all humanity, not loving any one of its members, why did He allow Christ to be so tortured for their sins? Again, this is blasphemy. Providence means care and care means love or am I using a version of my dictionary banned by hypers?’

     Sadly, no word of comment or understanding has come from Brother Galyon. Why are there so many brethren who prefer to spread a gospel of hate and intolerance rather than peace and goodwill? Why do even Christians prefer to believe a lie than accept a brother on his confession of faith just to save their own face rather than confess they have been mistaken? The strange thing here is that the blog owner who criticizes others but does not allow them to defend themselves claims himself that God decrees man to sin. Is this his excuse for sinning against his brethren with imagined impunity? Is this his reason for rejecting responsibility and Christian decorum? Is this not true Hyper-Calvinism and Antinomianism without a mask?