by Pastor David Cloud of Way of Life Literature:
Thus, while I have not read every book on this subject that could be recommended by my readers, I have made a considerable effort to understand Calvinism properly and not to misrepresent it (though I have learned that a non-Calvinist will ALWAYS be charged with misrepresentation).
The Calvinist will doubtless argue that I simply don’t understand Calvinism properly, and to this I reply that if Calvinism is that complicated it can’t be the truth. If a reasonably intelligent preacher who has studied and taught the Bible diligently for 32 years and has published a Bible encyclopedia and many other Bible study books can study Calvinism with a desire to understand it properly and still not understand it, then it is far too complicated to be the truth! The apostle Paul warned that it is the devil that makes theology that complicated. “But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ” (2 Cor. 11:3). Of course, Calvinism is not simple by any means and this is one reason why it produces an elitist mentality. To understand Calvinism one must deal with compatibalism, monergism versus synergism, electing grace vs. irresistible grace, effectual calling vs. general calling, effective atonement vs. hypothetical atonement, libertarian free will vs. the bondage of the will, objective grace and subjective grace, natural ability and moral ability, mediate vs. immediate imputation of Adam’s sin, supralapsarianism, sublapsarianism, infralapsarianism, desiderative vs. decretive will, and antecedent hypothetical will, to name a few!
This statement reminded me of a statement I made to Elena (who is a Roman Catholic) about Roman Catholicism under the comment section on my post called 'Pastor Tony Bartolucci on Francis Beckwith: Drowning in the Tiber.' I had commented to Elena that I have been studying Roman Catholicism consistently for months, and on and off for several years, and she, apparently believing that Roman Catholicism is impossible to understand without years of study, or by those who do not adhere to it's tenets, said: " ooooo!! Months huh? Honey, you haven't even scratched the surface." My reply was:
That's arrogant, Elena. If it takes years to understand enough about the RCC to know whether or not it teaches the true gospel, then we are all hopeless, Elena. If the RCC teachings are so hard to understand that a normal person, a born again person like me, can't understand them when comparing them to scripture then the RCC teachings are definitely not the gospel, because the gospel is simple and concise. I don't need to study for twenty years and have an advanced degree in theology to be able to compare doctrines to scripture. All believers are told to do this, to beware of false teachings, and we all can do it in days or weeks if we prayerfully study with the help of the Spirit who teaches believers.
I have been coming to the conclusion that both Roman Catholicism and Calvinism are false doctrines, and both,coincidentally(?), descending at least in part from Augustine of Hippo.