Calvinists claim if you can choose God of your own free will, then you can glorify yourself instead of God. Is this a valid argument?
In this highlight from a recent Trinity Radio episode, Dr. Braxton Hunter and Dr. Jonathan Pritchett respond to “Why I’m a Calvinist.” Watch the video below for a discussion of Christian apologetics, theology, and Calvinism.
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The claim is that if you respond to God through a libertarian type of free will, then you can glorify yourself.
But this is a misunderstanding of what glory is about. It’s a misunderstanding of what salvation is about. Because when people ask me, “Are you born again because of you or because God?” God. God is the one who puts you in a new family. Your belief does not put you in a new family.
If God was a whimsical God, you could repent and believe in Jesus and him like, “So.” “We have it… the Bible says…” “So.” And that’s not who God is. So that there is a mechanism for this doesn’t mean that you “born-again” yourself.
By the way, that whole mechanism is a gift. But it doesn’t mean that you are not interactive. And if you have a problem with my saying “interactive…”
Let’s break it down. You said glory, that it’s a misunderstood glory. Glory is an honor term. It’s honor. Glory is honor. So, if you reject God’s gift, is that dishonorable? Yes. If you accept God’s gift, is that honorable? Well, it’s not dishonorable, right? You would be dishonoring him not to accept the gift, but it doesn’t mean that it’s so honorable…
But if you understood how to proclaim the honor of your patron, that’s what exactly goes into faithfulness. The patron is the one who gives you the gift, okay, that you can’t obtain on your own. So, in the ethos is the ancient Mediterranean world, the glory is demanded – in just the just the social expectation – to be given to the giver of the gift. You don’t get credit for getting something you couldn’t obtain on your own in the first place. So, it’s unthinkable in the ancient Mediterranean world that you would give some of the glory to yourself for having done this.
And here’s the thing, I have never met a single Christian ever who takes credit for their salvation. Never! Never ever! “Look how awesome I am. I believe in Jesus.”
Well, that’s what I said in the debate. I’m like, nobody… you give me a Christmas present and I’m like, “Look how look how cool I am that I received that present. Look how well I received that present.” No. And I think Dave Hunt way back – you know David Hunt? – I think he did a great job of putting it very simply:
If you… I am going to… and don’t take… No, I’m not even going to add a bunch of details to this analogy because then you’ll say it’s not a correct analogy. So let’s just say, if I owe a debt, and you write me a check that will pay off that debt or something like that, and you give it to me, and I couldn’t have gotten it on my own… I had no way to get it, but I do have to…
Let’s just change this one thing just to make it makes sense. You are the last person in the world that should have someone write that write that check. You’re so not just undeserving but ill-deserving. And yet somebody’s given it to you.
And I’ve even done the one writing the check wrong. I’ve done him wrong, and he writes me the check. Okay but before I can put it in the bank, I do have to endorse the back. And when I endorse the back, I earned every cent. Who says that?!? Nobody! Nobody says that!