Can Calvinists Have Assurance of Salvation?

I am not one who likes to criticize Leighton Flowers for having such a narrow apologetic focus. Dr. Flowers’ ministry is dedicated entirely to refuting Calvinism, and this irritates many of his opponents, most notably, Dr. James White. While many take issue with Flower’s myopic apologetic, I do not. I believe that the wealth of access we have to information today is making the “jack-of-all-trades” apologist a relic of a bygone age. I have no problem with an apologist focusing his efforts exclusively on something like textual criticism, or refuting Mormonism, or defending the Trinity, etc. Thus, if Dr. Flowers wants to only focus on Calvinism, so be it.

That stated, there is a danger to Dr. Flowers’ method. Dr. White has regularly warned Dr. Flowers of becoming “imbalanced” due to his sole focus on Calvinism. When all theological energy is oriented around one issue, or one group, it can be very difficult to remain balanced. Systematic and biblical theology can be neglected when theologians have tunnel vision. And I do believe Dr. White’s warnings to Dr. Flowers are looking more and more prophetic. So, while I take no principled issue with Leighton’s narrow focus, I think it is unwise as it is causing him to become, as Dr. White says, imbalanced.

Case in Point

The more recent example of this imbalance was seen in an argument he recently posted on his Youtube community page which best demonstrates how corrosive Leighton’s anti-Calvinism is. Flowers attempted to attack Calvinism on the basis of the doctrine known as “The Assurance of Salvation.” He attempted to offer a logical argument that, on Calvinism, Christians being assured of their salvation is impossible. Below is a screen shot of his argument.

What’s Determinism Got to Do with It?

Flower’s logic in this argument is horrendous. The primary problem with his argument is that the second premise is absolutely irrelevant to the argument. Flowers has crammed Determinism into an argument that has nothing to do with Determinism. This is a form of of the non-sequitur fallacy.

If the Bible teaches that people can think they are saved when they are in fact not saved, then every professing Christian must provide a reason for why they do not consider themselves among that group. Whether we were predestined to be fooled or we autonomously fooled ourselves, the fact remains that we might be fooled. Flowers is trying to blame Determinism for a problem that is not at all germane to that doctrine.

To show this more clearly, I edited out of Dr. Flowers’ argument the irrelevant data. Notice how the argument flows perfectly well without any reference to Calvinism:

“Is Assurance of Salvation possible if some people genuinely believe they are saved when they really are not? If you believe that some people think they are saved when in fact they aren’t, how can you possibly know if you’re not one of those people?”

It’s not good that the entire second premise of his argument can be removed and the argument not only makes sense, but is significantly stronger. That premise is unrelated to the argument entirely.

The fact remains that, in light of the fact that some people can be wrong about their own assurance is dilemma with which all Christians must wrestle. In other words Dr. Flower’s hasn’t asked a poor question, but he has poorly asked a good question. There is a good conversation to be had among Christians about whether we can be assured of our salvation, but this is something entirely unrelated to Determinism. All Christians must answer the question Dr. Flowers asked: How do you know you’re not wrong about your own salvation? But this question is pertinent to Calvinists, Arminians, Provisionists, and every other person claiming knowledge of the divine. Whether or not God has an immutable decree is irrelevant to both the question and its answer. The issue of assurance concerns epistemology. Flowers has tried to turn a question of epistemology and psychology into a question of soteriology.

An Accidental Admission

In case you are unconvinced of my point thus far, let it be known Dr. Flowers accidentally affirmed my critique.

It appears I was not alone in my reaction to his argument. Many pointed out that the problem he is probing is not at all unique to Calvinism, nor is it even exacerbated by Calvinism. Enough people pointed out his irrelevant second premise that Dr. Flowers was forced to do a bit of damage control, but only dug the hole he was standing in even deeper.

When Flowers is presented with the same criticism I have made here he answers by abandoning his original argument and presenting an entirely new argument! When Dr. Flowers says “The difference is that on Provisionism we teach and believe that God is the kind of God who wishes the very best for all His creation and thus would never decree for any person to believe they are a child of God when they are not” he is making an entirely new argument against Calvinism. So he has not clarified his first argument as he thinks he has done. Rather, he has abandoned his argument and posited a new one! Allow me to show you.

Leighton’s first argument looked like this:

P1: In Scripture some people are fooled about their salvation.

P2: God predetermined that those people would be fooled about their salvation.

C: Calvinists cannot know if they are truly saved.

Now, how would we formulate the argument in his explanation?

P1: God is kind.

P2: A kind God would never fool a person about his salvation.

P3: Calvinism’s God fools people about their salvation.

C: The God of Calvinism is not kind.

These two arguments are not the same. One cannot possibly be an explanation of the other. They are categorically and formally different. One is valid, one is invalid. One deals with epistemology, the other deals with theodicy. Dr. Flowers, in trying to defend his first argument, had to abandon it and present a new one. This means he has yet to actually answer the question posed to him by so many of us.

Why This Matters

The purpose of this post was not just to dunk on Dr. Flowers or pick low-hanging fruit. I didn’t join the fray here for an easy victory. I circle back to my introduction to explain that there is a larger teaching moment here.

Dr. Flowers is a smart, capable thinker. The illogical nature of this post is beneath him. His body of work and his credentials will demonstrate that this is unbecoming of him. The problem however is that he has only doubled down! Rather than just admit it was a poor argument and delete it, notice the rest of his commentary as he “explained” why his first argument is a true problem only for Calvinists:

Dr. Flowers posted a really bad logical argument. After this was pointed out to him by many people- including Provisionists- he provided an even worse explanation, wherein he posited a new, unrelated argument. Yet he continues to claim that his logic is sound and the question so many have raised has been answered.

Dr. White’s warning to Dr. Flowers is vindicated. Dr. Flowers is so blinded by his hatred for Calvinism that he cannot even see very basic logical mistakes that listeners from both camps are pointing out to him. When a very smart man doubles down on such an obviously poor argument, there is a dangerous bias poisoning his thinking. Dr. Flowers is allowing his hatred of Calvinism to infect his reasoning. It is apparent to me that every argument against Calvinism is a good one in Leighton’s mind.

On a Personal Note

I do need to say one final word as a kind of appendix. When Dr. Flowers made his video against me, one of his favorite arguments was to accuse me of the “tu quoque” fallacy. I spent a lot of time defending myself from that charge. I find it interesting that he did not accuse his non-Calvinist friend of “tu quoque” when his friend pointed out Leighton’s argument against Calvinism also works against Provisionism.

My hope is that people are beginning to see that Dr. Flowers regularly engages in a kind of argumentation that it forces people to respond as I did, by turning it back on him. The fact remains that Dr. Flowers has made such a habit of deconstructing Calvinism with issues latent in his system, or by blaming Calvinism for things it is not organically responsible for, that those who respond are forced to say “but what about you…” It’s not tu quoque. Dr. Flowers forces our hand in how he argues. My hope is that by now people will see that Dr. Flowers is the problem, not me.

19 thoughts on “Can Calvinists Have Assurance of Salvation?

  1. marcdbaker asks a Torah question: November 13, 2021

    Rabbi KERR, I have a question please and it may not seem serious to some but it is to me. It is a serious question to me. My question is… In the scriptures, how does one gain the confidence to believe that G-D is pleased with their works ? Is there scripture that addresses this issue?

    The Response:

    “”How does one gain the confidence to believe that G-D is pleased with their works?””

    Xtianity bases itself upon a Pauline conflict theme which confronts faith vs. works. The Torah rejects all belief systems as tumah. Tumah spirits arouse the Yatzir HaRah within the human heart. These tumah spirits, the source of irrational emotions, physically produced by the major internal organs within our bodies. The identification of tumah spirits within our hearts, when emotions dominate and control the rational mind of Man. The employment of propaganda and rhetoric by politicians and priests\pastors seeks to arouse an emotional response by the listening audience. A famous example of religious rhetoric, ‘fire and brimstone’ sermons. Beliefs in this or that God, Heaven and Hell etc etc. All belief systems wherein a person declares “I believe” … constitute as avoda zarah idolatry. Your question cuts straight to the heart of the Parshah of Noach.

    What relevance does this Parshah have with the rest of the Torah? From the 3rd Parshah of Lech Lecha to the end of D’varim the Torah focus centers around the chosen cohen seed of Avraham.

    Not so Parshat Noach. That Parshah addresses “Bnai Brit Goyim”. Who qualifies as a Bnai Brit Goy? Dof ג of the Gemara of Avoda Zara teaches that Goyim across the board abandoned the brit faith.

    Herein explains the floods and the later stories of Sodom and the fears of Avram and Yitzak that the Goyim would murder them for the beauty of their wives.

    Therefore seeing that mitzvot from the Torah do not apply ,,, Man receives no reward for keeping mitzvot while existing in accursed g’lut\exile. Herein comes to play Parshat Noach, commonly referred to as the “Brit Bnai Noach” …. the only Bnai Brit people on the face of the earth, Israel. Only Israel accepted the revelation of the Torah at Sinai.

    Therefore Parshat Noach – the Brit Bnai Noach – applies strictly and only to Jews living in g’lut. The Torah defines ‘fear of Heaven’ as Ba’al Shem Tov, a person who strives to maintain and respect the reputation of his\her ‘Good Name’. The vision of the Torah quite simple: live a righteous and just life on this earth.

    Righteous refers to the dedication unto HaShem of defined tohor middot wherein a person dedicates the Yatzir Ha’Tov to dominate the key decisions of life wherein a person defines his lifes’ walk before HaShem. Just, the Torah defines as – the courage to fairly compensate others whose person or property you damaged either intentionally or accidentally. Justice: the fair compensation for all damages inflicted upon others.

    The Jewish take on the Hebrew Scriptures spins around the distinction between tohor and tuma. This subject Xtianity totally ignores. The subject of ‘greatest commandments — hands down the opening first 2 commandments of Sinai. Sinai represents the watershed moment which eternally separates bnai brit Jews from non Jews. The Xtian Bible for example violates the 1st Commandment of Sinai. Aaron translated the Name revealed in the first Commandment unto the word אלהים. The Xtian Bible translations make the exact same avoda zara error by translating the Name, revealed in the 1st Commandment, to other words. The Name lives as Spirit not a word that the lips can pronounce. Attempts to translate the Name into a word: Yahweh, Jehova etc etc all examples of avoda zara, commonly mistranslated as idolatry.

    Most people translate tefilla into the English word — prayer. Tefilla shares nothing in common with non Jewish prayer. By the terms of the oath brit (brit commonly mistranslated into covenant. The bible translations all pathetic. The term brit requires swearing an oath, which requires the kabbala knowledge of saying the Spirit Name of HaShem, which the Bible never once ever includes. The translation of covenant fails to grasp the Torah requirement that swearing a Torah oath requires knowledge how to pronounce the Spirit Name of HaShem (The Name). The revelation of the Name in the first commandment of Sinai, this Spirit no word can pronounce.

    The consequence of unreliable biblical translations, the Xtian religion which stands upon the foundation of personal “I Believe” belief systems makes critical and fundamental errors. Xtianity denies the existence of the Oral Torah. Big Mistake.

    The Torah compares to the Talmud — both documents highly edited. The most famous example of this fundamental reality of the Torah texts … the 10 commandments. Xtianity never troubles itself with anything other than fuzzy logic. Never met a Xtian that asks: “How does the T’NaCH (Torah, Prophets, and Holy Writings) define the word prophet? Witchcraft foretells the future. Prophets do not foretell the future. Its absolutely impossible to “fulfill” the words of the prophets! Prophets command mussar to all generations of bnai brit Israel. Xtianity never examines T’NaCH mussar. A very Big Error.

    All T’NaCH prophets command mussar instruction. The so called “10 Commandments” serve as a great example of understanding how the editors of the Torah organized the Torah revelation at Sinai. The framers and editors of the Torah always stood in the shadows of g’lut\exile. The stories of the expulsion of Adam from the garden, Noach and his Ark, childless Avram told that his future born chosen Cohen seed would suffer g’lut\exile. This fundamental strategic reality which the Pauline dogma of original sin totally ignores, it plays out that bnai brit Yidden alway fear the censorship of Goyim overlords.

    At Sinai Israel accepted only the first 2 commandments of Sinai. Jesus really missed the boat when he confused the mitzva of kre’a shma, the Torah definition of love, with the revelation of HaShem at Sinai – as expressed in the opening first 2 commandments. Why then did the editors and framers of the Torah organize the revelation of the Torah at Sinai into the format of 10 commandments????

    All prophets command Mussar, and Moshe he serves as the greatest of all Torah prophets. Something as significant as this, you would think that non Jews – as expressed through the religions of Xtianity and Islam, would have understood and known, but such most definitely not the case. The Koran repeats the word prophet over and again. About every 7 to 12th word – prophet. Yet never once did the Framers of the Koran ever ask: “How does the Torah define this key term “Prophet”?

    The Talmud refers to this fundamental error in logic as — “Hanging a mountain by a Hair”. In the 2008 Presidential election candidate Obama hung his hopes for winning the Office of POTUS on the “hair”, the rhetoric of “C H A N G E”. Obama like Xtianity with the term prophet, he never trouble himself – not in 8 years of Office – to ever once give a concrete definition to this “hair” key word “C H A N G E”.

    All T’NaCH prophets command mussar. The editors and framers of the Torah organized the revelation of the Torah at Sinai together with the 10 plagues of Egypt. But after the 2nd Commandment, Israel could hear no more; they demanded that Moshe ascend the Mount and receive the rest of the Torah. At the sin of the golden calf, mentioned previously, Israel had received only 2 commandments and no more. The breaking of the 2 tablets: the first commandment on one and the second commandment on the other.

    At the crisis of the golden calf, Israel who sent Moshe to receive the rest of the Torah for fear that if the people heard just one more command, that they would all die; the people, 40 days after Moshe had gone missing, cried unto Aaron: “Moshe is dead. Who will teach us the rest of the Torah?” 40 days after Moshe broke the 2 tablets, he heard the Oral Torah logic system. This logic system permitted Moshe to derive 611 commandments!!!! The 611 commandments exist as interpretations upon the opening first 2 commandments. The Talmud employs the Oral Torah logic system to derive 10s of thousands of halachic laws which interpret the Torah in a like and similar fashion as did Moshe who derived the 611 commandments based upon the Oral Torah logic system which HaShem revealed to Moshe 40 days after the sin of the golden calf!

    Both Xtianity and Islam deny the revelation of the Oral Torah logic system. The rediscovery of the ancient Greek logic formats developed by Plato and Aristotle would dominate the Muslim and Xtian civilizations to this very day. The lights of Hanukkah, during that Civil War which pitted the P’rushim\Pharisees against the assimilated T’zeddukim\Sadducees … the P’rushim (separated: think tithes), this leadership existed during the 110 years that Judea existed as an independent nation. After the nation lost its national independents to the Romans the title of the inheritors of the P’rushim took the name of rabbi or rabbis. The dedication of the lights of Hanukkah — to only interpret the Written Torah using the Oral Torah logic format. And most specifically not to use alien Greek logic formats to interpret the Written Torah!!

    The refusal of Xtian leaders to recognize, much less validate, the Oral Torah logic format, revealed to all generations of bnai brit Israel on Yom Kippur 40 days after the sin of the golden calf, this unique logic format permits all generations to interpret the Torah unto its original k’vanna of its Framers. No one generation has a lock and monopoly upon logic. Xtianity committed a Huge Error when its leaders threw out the Written Torah together with the bath water Oral Torah. The Church confused Torah commandments with judicial legal rulings/halacha; Paul and his misinformed ilk called Torah commandments “the law”. A catastrophic error. Court judicial rulings, known as halacha in Hebrew, exist as law – legalistic interpretations. Torah commandments – being prophetic – command mussar. Mussar by definition – NOT law.

    Tefilla qualifies as a postive time oriented commandment. This type of Torah commandment {positive and negative and positive time oriented}, requires k’vanna. The k’vanna which tefilla requires, remembering t’shuva. Xtianity errs by limiting its mistranslation of t’shuva unto repentance to regretting sin. T’shuva by sharp contrast “remembers” both tohor and tuma social interactions. Torah faith of the Cohen nation spins around the limitation to do avodat HaShem strictly and only when in a tohor condition. The Torah threatens the din of כרת if a Cohen person attempts to remember the t’shuva made by a specific Yatzir within the heart when daavening the Shemone Esrei – tefilla. This fundamental distinction – tefilla dedicates t’shuva of a specific Yatzir within the heart (Tahor or Tumah Yatzir), it fundamentally and for ever separates tefillah from none Jewish prayer. Making this required “P’rushim\separation” distinguishes Yiddishkeit from the counterfeit religions which the world knows as Xtianity and Islam.


  2. Jean Calvin expressly states in the Institutes that the Calvinist God lies to people even the “elect” cannot he certain of their salvation. They may go to heaven, they may not. Depends on their spiritual state at the end, and even then cannot be assured. Institutes 3 2 11. Calvinism is an utter absurdity.

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    1. Sue Love Run With His Plans for Us
      Greetings Sue.

      Your blog quotes: Jeremiah 29:10-11 For thus says the Lord: When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will visit you, and I will fulfill to you my promise and bring you back to this place. For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

      First order of business, the Hebrew T’NaCH Books do not employ chapters and verses. The Xtian biblical translators they chose upon their own authority to add chapters and verses; to make reading and quoting scripture nifty and so much easier. But in the process the church threw out the baby with the bathwater. It requires logic to interpret the meaning of what a person reads. The church denies Oral Torah logic – the revelation of Horev (שמות ל”ד-ו’ ז). Logic fundamentally requires Order, comparable to: “Humans need air to breath”. The choice to arbitrarily impose chapters and verses upon the Hebrew T’NaCH came at a huge expense. The church biblical translators expunged from the Torah the Order of sugiot, which the Framers of the T’NaCH originally established. The Order of sugiot, they compare to the rules of grammar unique to each and every language.

      T’NaCH which lacks sugiot, in effect becomes castrated; impossible to learn any T’NaCH Book through the 13 tohor middot logic format. This logic system, revealed through the revelation of the Oral Torah, does not compare to the philosophies of logic the ancient Greek philosophers Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle developed.

      Invalid biblical scholarship cherry picks p’sukim\biblical verses. Effectively this invalid method of scholarship, it “robs” the meaning of these up-rooted verses of their original k’vanna, as learned within, as part of its larger sugia contexts. Cherry picking p’sukim effectively “steals”, p’sukim – like a thief in the night. Mitzvot do not come by way of transgression. A man does not beat and rape a woman, with the k’vanna to raise children born through such a criminal union, as a married couple who live together in shalom.

      Talmudic common law, this format follows the precedent which the T’NaCH Books themselves established. Often, a T’NaCH sugia contains primary and secondary parts within the same sugia. The purpose of all sugiot within the T’NaCH — to instruct mussar to all generations. This mussar, it discerns and defines the distinction of what merits primary as opposed to secondary importance\priority.

      For example a sugia in Book of Israiah tells a vision, of a young woman. That she shall give birth as a sign of HaShem. That same sugia concludes with the most bitter of warnings. The invasion and ensuing destruction of Israel and the siege of Jerusalem, by the Assyrian empire. Why the two subjects? Primary\secondary: the sugia makes reference to a woman conceiving and birthing a child, a period of about 9 months, this time reference term serves as the Gate of Warning unto the invasion of the kingdom of Israel – by the Assyrian empire. The Gospel writers perverted the primary\secondary relationship and foisted the “virgin birth” rhetoric propaganda, because it served the interests of their theology religious rhetoric.

      Torah prophets do not fore-tell the future; they do not serve as soothsayers. The Torah strictly forbids this tumah through the negative commandment which prohibits the practice of witchcraft. The negative commandment of witchcraft qualifies as a Capital Crimes Torah transgression. Mitzvot do not come by way of transgressions.

      All T’NaCH prophets command mussar. Mussar defines the meaning of the word “prophesy”. Extolling T’NaCH prophets without knowledge of how the Torah defines “prophet”, qualifies as hanging a mountain by a hair. The “hair”, that key undefined term, in this case: “prophet”, upon which everything else hangs upon. The ancient Greeks referred to this “hair” as ‘the art of rhetoric‘ whereby the ruling elite control and govern the ignorant masses.

      The Order and organization of the T’NaCH Books into sugiot serves as the basis by which all later generations have the equal opportunity to employ the ‘comparison contrast’ Oral Torah logic system to interpret the k’vanna of T’NaCH and Talmudic mussar -as learned from Aggaditah.

      This discipline of learning, known as: ‘stand the Torah upon the feet of precedents‘. Both the T’NaCH and the Talmud learn through this identical precedents sh’itta\methodology. This rule of learning by way of precedents permits students of the T’NaCH to learn prophetic mussar. Learning by way of precedents compares sugiot against similar or contrasting sugiot. Something like how a person needs both eyes in order for the mind to see in 3 dimensions.

      Precedents permit later scholars to make a depth analysis of a prophet sugia; by folding the prophetic sugia upon other sugiot contained within the same Book; or by also comparing similar or contrasting sugiot located in other prophetic Books. The Gemarah brings precedents from all 6 Orders of the Mishna in order to understand the k’vanna of a singular and specific Mishna. This style of learning follows a difficulty\answer format whereby the sages determine if the precedent merits approval or they dismiss that precedent as to far removed from the Case within the Mishna, which the Gemarah currently studies. Herein defines a succinct summation of how to correctly learn both the T’NaCH literature, and the Talmud through its Midrashim commentaries. This sh’itta of kabbalah, first taught by rabbi Akiva goes by the title פרדס, my Rav Aaron Nemuraskii taught this sh’itta of learning to me.

      The sugia of the prophet which holds your cherry picked p’sukim ירמיה כט:י- טו. A precedent sugia ירמיה א:ד-י. This second sugia closely resembles the aggaditah of Moshe at the burning bush. HaShem chooses prophets. A persons just do not up and decide one day to make themselves prophets. Both sugiot thus compared share a common denominator of ‘command & response’. Even Bil’am traveled to Moav – at the commandment of HaShem – and not by his own egotistical whim or desire. Weaving NaCH mussar together with Torah commandments, a unique Torah wisdom, which fundamentally defines Oral Torah based T’NaCH and Talmudic scholarship.

      Cross reference your sugia with the comparative sugia ישעיה ט:ז-י:כב. Both g’lut & geulah HaShem determines. Neturei Karta condemns Zionism. They claim that HaShem, not Man determines when and how the Jewish g’lut ends. Zionist like myself respond: ”the Shoah revealed the curse of g’lut comparable to the spies and the decree of g’lut in the days of Moshe. HaShem, not Man opens the eyes, ears, and other senses of awareness by which Man perceives Divine revelations. The victory by Israel who fought and prevailed in two Wars of national independence – 1948 & 1967 – exposes the revelation of the finger of HaShem in this world!

      Man does not operate independent from the Will of HaShem. Man lives life expressed by either blessing or curse. Justice Justice pursue. Failure to rule the land (through righteous courtrooms which either establish or fail to comply with the fixed Torah obligation to rule the people with justice), with just governance, results in the curse of g’lut. The mussar of this sugia learns from the arrogance of the king of Assyria. That king assumed that by his might and power alone, nations collapsed and surrendered before his conquering Will. Yet at the end of the day, all the armies of Assyria died besieging the walls of Jerusalem, the Assyrian king fled, and his own children later assassinated him.

      Another precedent cross reference שמואל א יג:א-יד, this sugia resembles the impatience of the nation waiting for Moshe to return from mount Sinai. The rejected king moshiach, he feared the Philistine armies more than he feared the prophet Shmuel. Therefore ואתאפק ואעלה העלה translated “I could nor restrain myself from offering a sacrifice”.

      This statement defines in a negative manner, the mitzva of Moshiach. (The people originally demanded from the prophet that he anoint a king as the moshiach, so that this anointed would lead and fight the wars fought against foreign nations). The anointing of Moshiach: prioritizes obedience to obey prophetic mussar commandments over dedicating sacrifices upon an altar.

      The church by stark contrast, prioritizes the tumah murder of JeZeus on the cross, murdered through the tumah of an evil eye, and totally corrupt courtroom justice. Church theology prioritizes this “sacrifice” above obedience to prophetic commandments, specifically not to dedicate upon the altar of HaShem a bruised or deformed animal as a korban. The apostle Paul preached in Damascus, another example, that brit melah no longer qualified as a Torah commandment that merited obedience.

      The moshiach דאורייתא of the house of Aaron, likewise dedicated holy to HaShem, upon the יסוד\foundation that Aaron obey the mussar commandments of Moshe the prophet. Something like the famous ‘chicken and egg argument’ – of which came first. First obey the mussar commandments of the prophets and only then thereafter compel your Yatzir to offer oath sworn sacrifices. At the golden calf, Aaron feared the mob of the people like Shaul feared the Philistine army. Later prophetic mussar commandments always (comparable to the golden rule) spring from the Torah יסוד/foundation commandments.

      This hard fast prophetic mussar, exists as the kingdom of heaven yoke of faith. The mitzva of kre’a shma Yidden in all ensuing generations accept this sworn oath obligation equally upon ourselves and the lives of our children. By stark contrast, the religion of Xtianity has determined that its יסוד\foundation of faith, so to speak, stands upon the 10th floor of a multi storey high rise apartment. (משל\נמשל) the new testament has replaced the old testament, as the foundation of faith upon which the hopes of church Creeds, theology and dogmatism stands. The church trusts these theories of faith, developed during the early Dark Ages over and above the revelation of the Oral Torah at Horev.


      1. “First order of business” your explanation is much more complicated than what you are explaining, therefore it’s not an explanation, just a rambling blather no one is going to waste 5 minutes of their life reading.

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      2. The propaganda which floods the Main stream media press, it loves to foist the lie that stateless Arab refugees once ruled the mythical land of Palestine. Comparable to the French frogs of Paris who foist the lie that France defeated the Nazis in WWII. The EU and Jimmy Carter love the metaphor that Israel has imposed abaasskap Apartheid upon the Arabs, whose lands Israel illegally occupies. Why this charade? Follow the money. The Great Powers view a dominant Israel as a direct threat to their sphere of Influence in the Middle East and North Africa. Great Power propaganda condemns Israel as guilty of establishing bantustans ghettos whereby the Israelis exploit Arab refugee labor on par to how S. Africa racially classified its black Untermensch populations. As if Israel following the Shoah had replace Hitler! The gross stupidity of this vile comparison, it measures up with the Xtian belief that 40 days following the revelation of the Name of HaShem @ Sinai, that Israel worshiped a golden calf named אלהים, “who took them out of Egypt”.

        Israel fought 10 Islamic nations to truly gain independence › watch › v=tIgjU0Pri14

        Tarek Fatah correctly points out that the original Palestine Mandate, which the recently post WWI established League of Nations “awarded” to Britain, likewise included the lands of Trans-Jordan. What he fails to mention, the original Palestine Mandate likewise included the land which comprises present day Iraq and Kuwait!

        Saddam justified the invasion of Kuwait based upon this fact – that Kuwait, originally part of the territory of Iraq … as Pakistan – originally part of India. Tarek Fatah claims that the Jews in 1948 confronted 10 Arab armies. Perhaps, but these Arabs “serfs”, the Great Powers dominated and ruled these non Independent Arab lands as the Ottoman empire fell into chaos and decay. By the 19th Century, the European powers referred to the Ottoman empire by the term of contempt: “The Sick Man of Europe”.

        The Ottoman empire in the 19th Century, its status as a world power compares to the 2nd tier status which England and France, Germany how much more so … following the Second World War. These Arab “countries” existed as subject populations on par with the Jews in British Palestine! Britain artificially created and established the borders of Jordan, Iraq, and Kuwait. British interests deprive Iraq of possessing a descent deep water port! It purposely unilaterally chopped of Kuwait from Iraq like it created Trans-Jordan.

        The Cheney\Bush illegal invasion of Iraq to restore Kuwait independence has everything to due with Great Power politics whereby the imperialist nations determine the borders of countries across the Middle East. Herein explains the interests of the Great Power “Two State Solution” in the name of Peace. Carving up the Jewish state and Capital City into two hostile states promises “Peace”, like declaring a Golden Calf took Israel out of Egypt. How come the Xtian church foists this complete and utter narishkeit for 2000+ years? Church interests center upon name of JeZeus. The Poop of Rome combined with the “opposing” Protestantism pastors, they have no interest to worship the Name of HaShem as revealed in the opening Commandment of Sinai. Xtianity, like Islam, and all Goyim religions – one and all worship other Gods.


    2. 1) Perhaps you can give me a direct quote from Calvin. I just reread your citation of his institutes, and it NO WHERE says anything even remotely resembling what you have attributed to him. Calvin teaches there quite the opposite. He does not teach that God lies or deceives, but that God actually illuminates to the reprobate some of His goodness, and the reprobate self-deceives based on the light of that inferior illumination. Additionally, Calvin is very clear in paragraph that God is able to make His elect sure of their salvation. Calvin never claims that God lies or deceives the reprobate or the elect. Unless you can show me more specifically where I misread Calvin, I have to conclude you have badly misrepresented him.

      2) Your overall response lends credence to my conclusion above. For your very comment shows the same imbalance I criticize in the blog. No where do you interact with ANYTHING I say in the post. You ignore my argumentation entirely just to provide a *loosely* related invective against Calvinism.

      3) So how about answering the question. If psychological assurance is important, tell me how the Christian has it? How do you know you are not deceived? How do you know you won’t be one of those people who, even though you called Jesus Lord, He will not say to you “I never knew you.” What mechanism do you have to provide a psychological assurance that the apostates didn’t have?

      Keep in mind, going on another rant about how much you dislike Calvinism is not an answer. How do you have a step up on Calvinism? How can you provide the psychological assurance Dr. Flowers thinks is so important? How is “They may go to heaven, they may not. Depends on their spiritual state at the end, and even then cannot be assured. ” not applicable to your system?

      4) I agree with your response to “mosckerr.” Thank you for saying it so that I didn’t have to! LOL. I owe you one.


      1. Experience shows that the reprobate are sometimes affected in a way so similar to the elect that even in their own judgment there is no difference between them. Hence, it is not strange, that by the Apostle a taste of heavenly gifts, and by Christ himself a temporary faith is ascribed to them. Not that they truly perceive the power of spiritual grace and the sure light of faith; but the Lord, the better to convict them, and leave them without excuse, instills into their minds such a sense of goodness as can be felt without the Spirit of adoption … there is a great resemblance and affinity between the elect of God and those who are impressed for a time with a fading faith … Still it is correctly said, that the reprobate believe God to be propitious to them, inasmuch as they accept the gift of reconciliation, though confusedly and without due discernment; not that they are partakers of the same faith or regeneration with the children of God; but because, under a covering of hypocrisy they seem to have a principle of faith in common with them. Nor do I even deny that God illumines their mind to this extent … there is nothing inconsistent in this with the fact of his enlightening some with a present sense of grace, which afterwards proves evanescent. (Institutes 3.2.11). (Direct qoute)


      2. 1) What You Quoted
        There is nothing in that quote that attributes deception to God. The only thing ever attributed to God is instilling in the minds of the reprobate a sense of God’s goodness. That is not deception, unless you think God isn’t actually good. Is God good? Then when He instills into someone’s mind that He is good, did He deceive them? Calvin attributes God revealing objective knowledge to the reprobate which they then use to deceive themselves into thinking they possess His favor. But God does not instill into their minds the false notion that they possess his favor. See the difference?

        2) In What You Left Out

        Your third ellipsis is quite unfortunate! I do not mean to accuse you of doing this intentionally, but where you chose to end Calvin’s quote truly twisted his words. Your ellipses is conveniently placed to make Calvin seem to affirm that the deception which came before is what God illuminated in the minds of the reprobate. But the divine illumination is not connected to what came before, but to the part you left out!! What is it that God illuminates in the mind of the reprobate? Not their own deception. Instead, Calvin says this:

        “Nor do I even deny that God illumines their minds to this extent, that they recognize his grace; but that conviction he distinguishes from the peculiar testimony which he gives to his elect in this respect, that the reprobate never attain to the full result or to fruition. When he shows himself propitious to them, it is not as if he had truly rescued them from death, and taken them under his protection. He only gives them a manifestation of his present mercy. In the elect alone he implants the living root of faith, so that they persevere even to the end. Thus we dispose of the objection, that if God truly displays his grace, it must endure for ever.”

        The portion you left out completely overturns your accusations. For all Calvin affirms is that God illuminates his grace and manifests His mercy! This is something I am sure you would affirm with Calvin. All Calvin is saying is that the reprobate truly know God’s grace is God’s grace. They are not deceived on God’s end even though they are deceived about their own condition. The reprobate know God’s grace is is His grace. But Calvin is trying to overthrow the notion “that if God truly displays his grace, it must endure for ever” something else I am sure you would affirm alongside him.

        So again, you have not demonstrated that God deceives the reprobate. God makes known to them his grace and mercy and they are known to the reprobate unmistakably. That isn’t deception. The reprobate then self-deceive after coming into contact with God’s clear mercy and grace, and cause themselves to think they have taken possession of it savingly when they have not. Calvin does not attribute that deception to God.

        3) What about the Elect?

        Even if I were to grant that Calvin says God deceives the reprobate (which I thoroughly deny after having clearly demonstrated Calvin said nothing of the kind), you would still only be half done with your task. You claimed Calvin taught here that God deceived both the elect and the non-elect. Where does Calvin say anything about the elect being deceived? All that is said about the elect is that God “implants the living root of faith, so that they persevere even to the end.” That doesn’t sound like deception to me.

        4) Summary:

        All Calvin ever ascribes to God is truly revealing to the reprobate a true knowledge and experience of God’s goodness, mercy, and grace, all in order to “better convict them, and leave them without excuse.” God never instills deception; He never communicates false personal knowledge about our salvation. He communicates His goodness and grace at such an intimate level that the reprobate easily deceive themselves.


      3. You asked for it. And you hoped I was ignorant.

        It says what it says. You are denying the obvious. Anyone with a tenth grade education and walking around sense can understand it says the Calvinist God misleads people. “Evenescant grace”

        And Calvin murdered those that disagreed with him, this supposedly AFTER he became a Calvinist.


      4. I’ve read the quote and even provided in depth exegesis both in the comments and in a separate blog. You just want to post portions of it and then say “it says what it says.” But that makes sense. That’s what you do with the Bible too. You don’t want to defend exegesis, or explain it. You just want to assume the words mean what you wish and then tell your opponents “it says what it says.” You’ve dismissed evidence, I’ve presented it. That’s clear to any who read in on this exchange.


      5. Any one with half a brain can understand what Calvin says in 3 2 11. And not just there, he saysvthe same thing elsewhere in his institutes so no one gets confused. You are in cognitive dissonance, speaking lies in hypocrisy.


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