Calvinists and Catholics have a common view on original sin but there is a difference. Catholics believe that the guilt of Adam is removed at baptism and that man has a free will whereas Calvinists believe that original sin persists after baptism of infants resulting in the loss of free will which they then call the doctrine of Total Depravity.
Having come to this conclusion this leaves the Calvinist with no alternative but to believe the only way any person can be saved is by a sovereign act of God in eternity past.
Calvinism is not found in the Scriptures. Calvinism is a logical outcome of their erroneous view on total depravity. In fact the entire five points of Calvinism are nothing more than human reasoning based on a wrong premise. The wrong premise is their view on original sin and total depravity. Once one accepts the doctrine of total depravity there is no alternative but to deny the Gospel of the Grace of God that has made salvation available to all mankind.
Two verses used by Calvinists are:
Ps.58:3 “The wicked are estranged from the womb and go astray speaking lies” and,
Ps.51:5 “Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.”
Obviously newborn babies can’t speak lies and Ps.58:3 means, as on Calvinist commentary admits, they go astray at a very young age.
When David said that “in sin did his mother conceive” him he was declaring that he was born out of wedlock. He
had seven brothers born to Jesse and his wife but David wasn’t counted among the sons of Jesse when Samuel asked to see them and was despised by his brothers. David’s mother was taken to Moab for safety when Saul was pursuing him but the rest of the family was not. Saul persecuted non Israelites and this may explain his many attempts to destroy David.
To build a doctrine of depravity on a wrong understanding of these two verses is gross error. Calvinists would have us believe that the unborn baby and little children who have not come to the age of understanding, are depraved sinful beings and unless elected by a sovereign choice to salvation will burn in hell.
There are four Greek words for children in the NT.
1) A child in the womb – Babies can be filled with the Holy Spirit while still in the womb – John the Baptist was! (Luke 1:40).
2) Paidon – Little children who have not come to the age of understanding – Jesus said these will NOT perish – Not even one of them Matt 18:14 – These have the same status as “converted” people and are therefore safe. Jesus said:
“Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Matt.18:3).
When Jeroboam’s young son died God found “good” in him (1Kings 14:13).
When David’s baby son died and he said , “I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me” (2Sam.12:23).
3) Teknon – Children who have come to the age of understanding but not fully mature – still learning (Gal.4:1).
John 1:12 should read “children” so also 1John 3:2. They can be saved or lost depending on CHOICE
4) Huios – Sons who have reached full manhood – full sonship – – This is called “the adoption” and takes place when we are raptured and made perfect bodily like Christ.
“Ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body” (Rom 8:23).
Our redemption is complete when we are raptured and we receive our resurrection body like the Lord Jesus. Here we have the firstfruits of the Spirit. God dwell in believers by His Spirit and we are sealed with the Holy Spirit unto the day of remption but though justified fully, we await our translation and glorification.
The evil doctrine of Original sin attributes guilt to babies because Adam sinned. God NEVER judges anybody for others sins. We are responsible for our own sin.
Every baby conceived is a creation of God. Does God create an evil heart in a child? If He does that means He predestinates every person to a sinful life and God is responsible for sin!
God is a Holy God who cannot sin and Calvinism blasphemes the holiness of the God of heaven!
It is clear from Scripture that little children are not sinful. Jesus said: “their angels do always behold the
face of my Father which is in heaven” (Matt.18:10).
“it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish” (Matt.18:14).
“Suffer the little children to come unto me for of such is the kingdom of heaven” ((Matt.19:14).
Did Paul Teach Total Depravity
Paul certainly taught that we all sin and John states that
“if we say that we have no sin we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us” (1John 1:8). Paul states:
“All have sinned and come short of the glory of God” (Rom.3:23).
But did Paul teach that we inherit a sinful nature from Adam? The verse used by Calvinists to support this error is Rom.5:19:
“For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous”.
If we interpret this to mean that because Adam sinned every person has a depraved nature and incapable of choosig salvation then we must interpret the rest of the verse to mean that because of the obedience of Christ every person shall be made righteous! That is universalism! It is abundantly clear that Scripture does not teach universalism.
And what about Rom.5:12?
“Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all
men, for that all have sinned”
The result of Adam’s sin was that “death passed upon all men” and the reason for that is because “all have sinned”- by choice. If we never sinned we would never die but “all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” (Rom 3:23).
“The wages of sin is DEATH but the gift of God is eternal life” (Rom.6:23).
It is death that resulted from the fall in Eden and not a depraved nature that cannot choose salvation.
Responsibility Requires Free Will
From beginning to end the Bible teaches that we are responsible for our choices and actions.
“The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin.” (Deut.24:16) Also 2Kings 14:6; 2Chron.25:4.
If the children shall not be punished for the sins of parents then neither can we be punished for what Adam did. God has made it abundantly clear that he desires the salvation of all the wicked and hopes that the wicked will choose to turn from his wickedness.
“As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?” (Ezek.33:11).
God is a loving God who is longsuffering not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. Calvinism blasphemes the love of God!
The result of Adam’s sin is that we all die, not that we are made sinners.. Adam had a free will and was sinless until he sinned. Little children created by a holy God are sinless until they exercise their free will and sin. Sadly we all sin but though we inherit Adam’s nature we are not sinners until we sin by choice.
After we become sinners by choice we are separated from God and our nature is prone to evil. Just as Adam tried to justify himself when God challenged him – he blamed Eve. God said “Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife” so he was driven out of Eden.
Sin is a free-will action – not a character trait.
Ephraim the Syrian writing about AD350 on the free will stated that those who deny free will are placing the blame on God for all the sin in the world. That’s what Calvinism does!!!!!
Angels are Also Responsible
God didn’t create evil angels. They became evil by CHOICE. Everything God created is perfect and VERY GOOD. So children in the womb are VERY GOOD and NOT sinful. God said to Satan:
“Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee.” (Ezek.28:15)
Why didn’t God provide salvation for Satan and the Angels that sinned? Because they sinned in the full knowledge of God having dwelt in His presence. Whereas Eve was deceived and we sin often through ignorance.
If a person repeatedly refuses the entreaties of the Holy Spirit and is fully enlightened then they “blaspheme the Holy Spirit and for that sin Jesus said there is no forgiveness, “neither in this world neither in the world to come!” (Matt.12:32).
God is longsuffering but His patience does run out just as it did in days of Noah when He said:
“My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years” (Gen.6:3).
Thus we read in Isa.55:6-7:
“Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.”
God will not always be found. In the coming great Tribulation there will be “strong delusion” and intense persecution of all who heed the Gospel of the Kingdom preached by 144,000 Jews. When these are martyred, God will send and angel to proclaim the everlasting Gospel, warning men that if they accept the mark of the Beast (Antichrist) they will seal their doom for eternity in the lake of fire. Why would God bother to warn men if He has already elected some to be saved and some to be lost?
The Process of Salvation
When old enough we CHOOSE TO SIN and the older we get the more we choose to sin until we are saved by Grace through Faith in Christ. Then
God gives us a New Heart Eze.36:26. But we as believers still have FREE WILL.
Therefore, though justified by the merits of Christ we can still choose to sin. The body is prone to temptation in this world and we look forward to the day when we will have the “redemption of the body” ie resurrection. Rom.8:23
We are tempted by our natural inclinations and desires of the body (the flesh), by the world and by the Devil. But ALWAYS the CHOICE IS OURS.
Calvinists think that if we contradict the Reformers we must be condemned. But if I have to obey the Reformers then I should hate the Jews and burn heretics. The reformers were anti
Semitic and their teaching was used to justify the Holocaust!
Our authority is the Word of God ALONE and we must refuse to accept commonly held errors just because so called “great men” held those views.
Sadly the Reformation only came part way from Catholicism. The Reformers released the Bible to the people and preached grace instead of works but got little else right.
We thank God for what they did get right but refuse to follow them in the things they failed to get right – otherwise we should still be sprinkling babies and burning anyone who practiced believer’s baptism.