EvilBender, you make my life a writhing, venomous nest of vipers. :-)
I am, of course, referring to my friend's recent posts responding to A Form of Sound Words, which is one of the worst things on the Internet. The author, an exclusive Calvinist, is dead set against Catholicism, "The World," and any brand of Christianity that is not his own, curiously nut-flavored, one.
One of his most offensive posts deals with the doctrine of double election, which only the most hard-core Calvinists buy. Essentially, the dogma says that God specifically chooses everyone who will have salvation... and that, conversely, he specifically chooses all who will be condemned to an eternity in Hell. The linchpin of this teaching is the assumption of mankind's utter inability to ever choose anything but the wrong choice. Rand writes:
God isn't the author of confusion. Most teachings in Scripture are quite sensible and logical. So let's examine predestination logically for a moment. As far as I can see, in the Bible, there are only 2 places souls can go to after the Great White Judgement: Heaven or Hell. Those who are justified unto the Kingdom of God were 'chosen before the foundation of world' (Ephesians 1). So what of those who are condemned to the Lake of Fire? By choosing one group for Heaven, does that not instantly place the other group into condemnation?Yes, he is conflating political "election" with divine "election." He essentially attributes the characteristics of a large, diverse, democratic electorate to a one-willed, divine being. Doesn't seem especially logical to me.
A few weeks ago, we had election in the US. George W. Bush was elected as president, John Kerry was not. Both are tied in together; one was elected, the other was not. Logical isn't it?
But for some strange reason, many Christians out there refuse to carry this logic to their salvation theology."
That's the problem with this sort of theology. Drawing from nothing but a few specific, contextless texts and his own interpretive framework, Rand concludes something that is abhorrent to much of Christendom. Moreover, he writes about it as if it is ridiculous that anyone else would ever adopt a different interpretation of the same passage. Never mind millennia of teachings and myriad gallons of ink spilled on this subject; Rand has it all figured out.
What arrogance coupled with shortsightedness.