Recently I had a conversation with a man of God who we invited to speak at our church. He is a passionate sold-out Christian who is a full time evangelist. When he preaches it makes you want to leave in the middle of the sermon to hand out tracts, talk with strangers, or anything just to get the gospel out.
I decided that I wanted to make a video featuring evangelism, and it would use his sermons like my previous videos. I sent him an email asking his permission to post it online. I was genuinely shocked when he refused. Because the purpose of the video was to motivate Christians to share the gospel I couldn’t think of a reason he wouldn’t allow it to be put online.
His reason: “I noticed on your site that you have a bunch of Calvinist videos. I do not agree with the teachings of calvin. they are unbiblical.”
I agree with him. I believe Calvinism is unbiblical. But seriously? I don’t have Calvinist videos on my site. I have videos that have Calvinists in them, but the videos have nothing to do with their doctrine.
The early Church had a ton of differences to deal with. Read this article on why Paul and Barnabas separated. And furthermore they were molding together people from all over the world, both Jews and Gentiles. There’s a lot that wasn’t covered in scripture to face what they were about to go through.
Here is another issue they addressed:
“Now accept the one who is weak in faith, but not for the purpose of passing judgment on his opinions. One person has faith that he may eat all things, but he who is weak eats vegetables only. The one who eats is not to regard with contempt the one who does not eat, and the one who does not eat is not to judge the one who eats, for God has accepted him. Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls; and he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand. One person regards one day above another, another regards every day alike. Each person must be fully convinced in his own mind.”
Paul did not say that one was right and the other was wrong. He didn’t say that one man had received Christ while the other was an immoral pagan who deceived other into thinking he was a Christian.
This does not concern immoral practices, which no Christian should commit, but is dealing with doctrine.
The Gospel of Jesus Christ will bring living water to a soul. Doctrine will determine how salty that water is.
Example. I believe that Paul Washer is a man of God. But he’s Calvinist. I don’t question his living water, I question his salt. I accept his teachings, and I admire his passion. But I don’t agree with this particular belief of his.
The man I mention earlier was in the wrong. Not because he believed Calvinism was wrong (Each person must be fully convinced in his own mind), but because he was unwilling to “accept the one who is weak in faith”.
Don’t let your doctrine become your Gospel.
-Cullen J Webb
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