Q. I am reading through your book “7 Things You Have to Know to Understand End Times Prophecy” and am finding it very rewarding. My question today concerns Calvinism, and why so many are embracing this teaching. It seems to me that if a person holds to the five points of Calvinism then you cannot have any assurance of your salvation. I wonder if they see something I don’t and would appreciate any comments you might have.
A. Calvinism holds that man is totally depraved, and left to his own devices will not, can not, seek God. God didn’t want all of mankind to be lost, so He unilaterally chose some to be saved. These chosen ones are the only people Jesus died for. Although God issues something Calvinists describe as an external call to everyone, He issues a special irresistible internal call to His elect through the Holy Spirit. Because God chose His elect, Jesus died for them, and the Holy Spirit saw to their salvation, Calvinists believe they can not lose their salvation. As for assurance of salvation, Calvinist belief says if you responded to the Lord’s call then you are saved, because if you weren’t one of His elect you couldn’t have responded.
What this means to me is that Calvinists believe we have no control over whether we’re saved or not. If we’re not one of His elect then Jesus didn’t die for us and there’s nothing we can do about it. That means passages like Matt. 7:7-8 where Jesus tells us that whoever asks will receive, whoever seeks will find, and to whomever knocks the door will be opened are really not as unconditional as they seem. The same would be true of John 3:16, Romans 10:9 and others. And Peter had to have been mistaken when he wrote that God does not want any to perish but for all to come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9) because according to Calvinism God knowingly created most of His children to be lost.