WHY CALVINISM IS A CULT

TULIP Calvinism

Calvinism is a cult for many reasons. Cult-like behavior is always marked by an idolatrous attachment to the cult itself. You will not find every Presbyterian or Reformed Baptist to be mired down in the cult-like behavior of Calvinism. Many people attend Calvinistic churches for reasons other than Calvinism and such members place little emphasis on Calvinism itself. It is those people who have committed themselves to five-point TULIP Calvinism who are mired in this cult.

Calvinists like to claim that all other theological systems are false. Calvinists have beliefs similar to the early Gnostics, who believed “the elect” were those ‘chosen-ones’ who had the secret knowledge of God. They believe that anyone who does not accept Calvinism must be a ‘non-elect’ and ‘non-regenerate’ person. If you observe a Calvinist carefully, you will see that he has little regard for the true meaning of the Bible message. The only message he will allow or accept is the message of Calvinism. All Biblical passages are run through the Calvinist mill. Any passage which seems to run contrary to his doctrine is  ‘reworked’ to fit into his system. Like all cults, the Calvinist will not change his beliefs under any circumstances. Rather than conforming his beliefs to the Bible, the Calvinist tries to conform the Bible to his beliefs. Instead of trying to understand what the Bible really says, he first asks himself how any given passage might impact Calvinism. Then, instead of honestly trying to understand the intended message of any given passage, he develops an interpretation that will suit Calvinism. Thus all interpretations are ‘custom-fit’to suit Calvinism.

The Calvinist serves his belief system and to him the Bible must be interpreted to conform to his belief system. All interpretations of the Bible are subject to doctrines of Calvinism. For example, in the gospel of John, Calvinists interpret the word “world” in John 1:29 and John 3:16 to mean “the elect” or ‘chosen-ones’ (they use the word ‘predestinated’). But at John 17:9, they interpret the word “world” to mean “other than the elect.” Therefore, they give the same word ‘world’ (Greek kosmos), totally opposite meanings from one passage to the next. There are myriads of examples in Calvinism just like this one.

Ordinary Christians do not have such a rigid 5-point system. If a Bible passage comes up that impacts their present beliefs, such Christians will change their beliefs to conform to the Bible. Not so with a Calvinist. The Calvinist (like the Mormon and Jehovah’s Witness) serves his rigid belief system and no Biblical passage is going to change his mind.

The purpose of reading the Bible is to find out what it says and arrive at the intended meaning through understanding the context, the grammar and following accepted objective principles of interpretation. Most people read the Bible to discover the treasures therein, but not the Calvinist. He uses the Bible only to make it suit or ‘custom-fit’ his rigid 5-point brand of Calvinism.

Calvinists do not try to coherently piece the ideas in the Bible together to arrive at the big picture. Rather, they pick up passages that suit them best and either ignore or rework all other passages which do not endorse Calvinism. They gather together a bunch of passages and build for themselves a rigid cult-like doctrinal belief system (called TULIP) which is to their liking. In short, they create their own god, an idol called Calvinism.

Many people would say this language is too strong to describe Calvinism. At one time I would have said so myself. But having studied and observed Calvinists for thousands upon thousands of hours, it is my solemn conclusion that Calvinism is a very dangerous cult and falls into the same bracket of cults like Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormonism. Do not let the fact that they accept regular doctrines like the Trinity and the Deity of Christ fool you either. Observe their behavior in church circles, in theological debates and especially on social networking sites and you will see how correct are my observations that Calvinism is indeed a blinding and life-choking CULT.

(Adapted from an article on Angelfire.com. http://www.angelfire.com/realm/raised-to-life/Articles/Cult.html)

JK

[In the image, you will notice that the word ‘perseverance’ is spelt wrongly. That reflects the widespread illiteracy of so-called ‘christians’, apart from their appalling Bible-ignorance. ~JK]

About Tebeth

Christian. Born-again. Baptized. Loves the Lord Jesus Christ. Loves to testify about Christ on the Internet.
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29 Responses to WHY CALVINISM IS A CULT

  1. Solange França says:

    dangerous…

  2. John says:

    So… Did John Calvin created the term TULIP?

    • He did not. The five points are a summary of the conclusions reached by the Synod of Dort, which were in response to a five articles held by the Remonstrant Arminians. This was a bit over a half century after Calvin’s death. The actual acronym TULIP seems to have appeared in the early 1900’s, so, relatively recent. Naturally, it might not work so well in languages other than English.

      • Harlan Urwiler says:

        You are correct about the origin of the acronym TULIP. However, all of the ideas set forth in the TULIP are based on Calvin’s erroneous theological work. Luther’s views about justification were condemned by the Council of Trent from 1545-1563. The view ascribed to Calvin was also condemned under the title of “Jansenism” in the 17th century. Historically speaking, John Calvin was a heretic, a murderer, and a blasphemer.

  3. Joan says:

    Not just “perserverence” but also” irresistable”. God bless your ministry.

  4. Tebeth says:

    Thanks, Joan. I didn’t notice that. IrresistAble?? Irresistible!!!

  5. Abraham says:

    “Rather than conforming his beliefs to the Bible, the Calvinist tries to conform the Bible to his beliefs”. After reading 1000’s of calvinistic posts, I certainly agree to your above point. I believe doctrine is their idol

    • That has been my observation, as well. First-hand, I may add, as my church has slowly become more vocal in its support of Reformed Theology, and more vocal against anyone who holds a different (read: Scriptural) view.

  6. Jennifer O'Gavaghan says:

    Loved your article! Explains a LOT of what I heard and saw in the Reformed Presbyterian Church I attended for most of a year . . . but finally left due to the disconnect between Scripture and Calvinist Doctrine.

  7. Rick Castillo says:

    An excellent (and sadly true) summary of the cult of Calvinism. (FYI – Something is missing from the following sentence in the 2nd paragraph: “The only message he will allow accept is the message of Calvinism.”)

  8. Jennifer says:

    Calvinism is a demonic set of philosophies, created by men. It is absolutely anti-biblical, anti-Gospel and anti-godly.

  9. Heary Rappleyea says:

    I was really being pressured by a group of calvinists open air preachers to convert to calvinist beliefs after I asked not to speak on the matter with me because it causes division. After resisting the doctrine as well as other doctrines of reformed theology I was accused of being antinomian (anti-law) because I believed the Law of Moses is for the unbelievers and the Law of Liberty for the saved according to the Epistles, and was asked to not return.

    They claim that they are preaching grace, but do they? According to these men repentance from sin is a absolutely necessary for salvation. But Is it, or is it as I believe a result of putting our faith in Jesus Christ? However faith alone in Christ is mentioned countless times in the bible, with no mentioning of repentance what so ever. How ever repentance is greatly stressed and not just repentance but as many preachers have quoted “we must weep and lament about our sins against God.” But Jesus never said this, nor did any of the apostles.

    The point is this, it seems to me Calvinism has a legalist spirit behind it, very well hidden. The Message of Salvation according to the calvinist is you must repent from sin and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. Do you see the problem? Satan has seeded a lie, the true Gospel believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and that God raised Him from the dead and you will be saved and that salvation is for all who will believe on Jesus. Satan or man or both has introduced repentance as a requirement for salvation, and forced it to the forefront ahead of grace. So The Gospel of Salvation through Unmerited Favor from Jesus now becomes a performance based system. A mixing of the Old Covenant Of Moses with the New Covenant of Christ. Of course they will misinterpret scripture by saying the ordinances were removed in Christ. However read the Epistle of Hebrews and one will find Paul is writing to confront the issue of dispersion between Jews and Gentiles, and pointing out that the ordinances which were key in the separation between Jews and Gentiles was done away with. Reading the Epistle of Galatians we find it was the whole law is fulfilled in Christ and was put to death on the cross.

    Second Issue I find true with Reformed Theology:
    What I noticed is that Reformed Theology seems to shape the interpretation of the scripture through the theologian instead of Christ Himself. For instance Calvanism speaks of Irresistible grace, and Total Depravity. These words simply are not found anywhere in Scripture, there is no such thing as irresistible grace, the bible just says grace, and the idea of condemnation for the unbeliever would suggest yes grace is in fact resistible.

    Thoughts on Romans 8:9:10 In careful study and spending many hours reading the book of romans, It seems Romans 9 is not even about salvation and election but about mans inability to be made righteous by works. It is by Gods mercy we are saved, not by our will to obey him through the law. A major part of Calvinist doctrine is built on Romans 9: 16-22.

    “16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.
    17 For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth.
    18 Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.
    19 Thou wilt say then unto me, Why doth he yet find fault? For who hath resisted his will?
    20 Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?
    21 Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?
    22 What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction:
    23 And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory,”

    But read on the next verse 24 and we get what this whole paragraph subject is, its not about predestination of salvation but of both Jews who are first to be Gods people and later the gentiles .

    24 Even us, whom he hath called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles?

    My understanding of this verse from hours of seeking God over the matter is this…

    The troublesome pronoun “it” of verse16 is undefined, it to the calvinist is referring to predestined salvation, however hermeneutics would suggest this to be contradictory to several scriptures, John 1 says for instance “As many as believed were given the right to become the children of God”

    I find a better possibility for “it” is actually ones ability to be saved and in this possibility the segment in question seems to make sense to me. Salvation is not dependent on the will of man, or simply put salvation is not by our ability to obey God. But it is through the mercy of God we the church of Jews and Gentiles are now his children.

    So was Gods wrath on the gentiles unrighteous? Paul suggest that God did it to show his power, and it did, the gentiles were constantly seeing the power of God through wrath. And make His riches of glory known at the same time, through the separation of Jews and Gentiles Both wrath and Glory were demonstrated.

    • Tebeth says:

      You don’t have to write so much. If you were truly born again and indwelt by the Holy Spirit, you would understand things very clearly. Neither Calvinism nor Arminianism nor any ‘ism’ is going to help you.

      The problem today is that theology and doctrine take the place of regeneration. Unless a man is born of the Spirit, he will not understand the Word of God. Therefore, first, you must be born again, John 3.7. Then, being utterly dependent (having total faith) on God’s Word and the Lord Jesus Christ, you begin your Christian walk.

      Do not get into any discussions on Calvinism or any other ism for that matter. Be born again! Be indwelt by the Holy Spirit. And the Holy Spirit, through God’s Word, will reveal the Truth to you.

    • Harlan Urwiler says:

      You make a good summary of the misunderstanding of the context of Romans 9 which those of the Protestant Reformed perspective isolate and reinterpret. However, your statement that we are saved by faith alone without repentance from sin is wrong. James makes it clear that we are NOT saved by faith alone, but by faith and works (2: 24). No where in the scriptures where faith is spoken of is it presented as being “alone.” In all of St. Paul’s writings he makes is clear that we are saved by faith apart from the works of the Mosaic law or from moralistic works on righteousness by themselves. Yet Paul puts it in plain language in Romans 2: 5-8 that we are saved by our works too. Our works in themselves can never merit salvation apart from grace. God’s salvation is always by His grace, but it is not by faith alone that we are saved. Without repentance from wicked deeds, there is no salvation. Martin Luther was the first person to introduce the idea of salvation by faith alone apart from works of repentance from sin. Luther even inserted the word “alone” into his translation of Romans 3: 22. In doing so he was eventually excommunicated from the Catholic Church for heresy after many appeals by learned and concerned doctors of the Church failed to convince him of his errors.

  10. robert says:

    All though i don’t claim to be a calvinist i would rather lean that direction Why?
    because i have always been taught that what defines a cult is when you believe men can be raise to Gods level or lower God to mans level like mormons they teach that one day they will rise to Gods level and become God almighty and populate their own world jehovah witnesses believe christ was a created and the brother of satan and the spirit is not a person therefor lowering God to mans level calvinist don’t do that they teach just the opposite they teach man is total lost with out God and can not save him self with out God. on the other hand arminians believe they choose God therefor they rob God of his glory making God less then he claims to be arminians also teach that because God made man in his image that we are little Gods this is raising man to Gods level so really who is more of a cult? look at youtube and listen at all the great arminian preachers at what they are saying and look at all the famous cult leaders did they steam from Calvinism or arminianism ? Mathews 7:22 reads Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’Who is God talking about Arminians or a calvinist ? calvinist don’t believe in modern day prophets they must be speaking about Armenians lets look at the next verse 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’.. If this person is prophesying like arminians do, and driving out demon out of christian like arminians do, and performing miracles like divine healing like arminians do.. what is this this person sin? its sounds like he is doing everything right if your a arminian? sounds like a very active christian to me whats his sin? that God would say I never knew you not… I knew you but you lost your salvation.. he says I NEVER knew you!!
    could it be because this person was born of a false doctrine and taught a false doctrine?
    think about that who is really a cult????

  11. Harlan Urwiler says:

    I was a Calvinist (Reformed) believer for 15 years of my life. When I converted to the Catholic faith, my former friends (so called brethren) who are Calvinists excommunicated me and will no longer speak to me to the present day. A Calvinist elder even told me that I was not a Christian if was a Catholic, and that my soul was in eternal peril. No truly informed Catholic would ever say this to any member of another Christian faith. Despite many attempts to apologize and ask forgiveness for hurt that I caused in my conversion, the people I once knew as “brethren” shun me. Aside from the many scriptural errors which the theology of John Calvin has perpetuated in the past 500 years, is this behavior not another evidence of cultism? Pope Francis has called for greater open dialogue between Catholics and Protestants to help us better understand each other without judging. Both sides have sinned and made terrible mistakes in the past. However, true love always trumps bigotry. Love never fails. If we must choose between John Calvin and Jesus Christ…. I choose Jesus my Lord and Savior!

  12. Andrew Blake Chancery says:

    I am a Calvinist because the Bible teaches it. Jesus taught it. Paul taught it. I rest in the scriptures and they point to sovereign grace.

    • Tebeth says:

      You are a brainwashed Calvinist.

    • Harlan Urwiler says:

      Martin Luther’s theology was condemned as heresy at the Council of Trent. Calvin’s theology was condemned under the label of “Jansenism” in the 17th century. John Calvin lived 1,500 years after the time of Christ and the apostles. Calvin was raised Catholic, but left the Catholic Church to start his own church in Geneva. Those who disagreed with him were burned at the stake, decapitated, and often banished. Calvin spent the majority of his life preaching, arguing with his opponents, and died young after his only son and wife passed away. He was known to be disagreeable, judgmental, and argumentative to anyone who challenged his authority. He did not believe in private interpretation of the scripture, and made it a civil crime to disagree with his opinions publicly. If you were a citizen of Geneva, it was also a crime to not attend his church. He was trained to be a “lawyer” in his humanistic studies, but never received any formal theological training as a clergyman. In his writings he claimed to be a prophet of God to his generation. According to Calvin, he alone interpreted the scriptures correctly. So how would John Calvin know how to interpret the scriptures correctly? Doesn’t his personal character disqualify him as a pastor according to 1 Timothy 3: 1-7?

  13. Andrew Blake Chancery says:

    Acts 13:48 says as many as were ordained to life believed. So how is it that Calvinists ignore scripture?

    • Tebeth says:

      Don’t pick and choose and twist the Scriptures.

      • Harlan Urwiler says:

        “His divine power has bestowed on us everything that makes for life and devotion, through the knowledge of him, who called us by his own power glory and power. Through these he has bestowed on us the precious and very great promises, so that through them you may come to share in the divine nature, after escaping from the corruption that in the world because of evil desire.” 2 Peter 1: 3-4. Compare with 2 Peter 2: 20. John Calvin missed these scriptures when he was constructing his theology in the 16th century!

    • Harlan Urwiler says:

      “But if anyone does sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous one. He is the expiation for our sins, and not for our sins only but for those of the whole world.” 1 John 2: 1b-2. Is the whole world “destined” for eternal life? According to Matthew 25: 41, the answer is “no.” Consider also Matthew 23: 37. Jesus says He willing to save Jerusalem, but the people were unwilling. If Calvin is right, isn’t Jesus wrong? I would call this “ignoring” the complete body of sacred scripture.

    • Harlan Urwiler says:

      “For if they, having escaped the defilement of the world through the knowledge of of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, again become entangled and overcome by them, their last condition is worse than the first. For it would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment handed down to them.” 2 Peter 2: 20-21. Notice also that in St. Peter’s introductory remarks of this epistle he states “Simon Peter, a slave and apostle of Jesus Christ, to those who have received a faith of equal value to ours through the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ; May grace and peace be yours in abundance through knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.” 1: 1-2. Isn’t St. Peter saying that the false teachers were once purified from their sins by the saving “knowledge” of Jesus Christ? As is usual, John Calvin and his followers invent their own rules of interpretation to suit their theological needs.

    • Harlan Urwiler says:

      “If these are yours and increase in abundance, they will keep you from being idle or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. Anyone who lacks them is blind and shortsighted, forgetful of the cleansing of his past sins. Therefore, brothers, be all the more eager to make your call and election firm, for, in doing so, you will never stumble. For in this way entry into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will be richly provided for you.” 2 Peter 1: 8-11. Calvin did not get his doctrine of predestination from the scriptures. It was a distortion of the writings of St. Augustine that both Luther and Calvin consulted in developing this heresy combined with Calvin’s own ill-tempered and dictatorial nature. St. Paul also says, “So then, my beloved, obedient as you have always been, not only when I am present but all the more now when I am absent, work out your salvation with fear and trembling.” Philippines 2: 12.

  14. Harlan Urwiler says:

    I would like to point out that the scriptures do not “teach” anything, strictly speaking. The scriptures “record” the substance of Christian dogma. Teaching is a human enterprise performed by men or women. Teaching is a dynamic action in its literal meaning. Christ did not leave us a “bible.” He left us a “Church” which then preserved, translated, and passed on the bible to us. Only Christ’s true “Church” has the authority to “teach” in an infallible way. But the Church is only infallible when it teaches the approved dogma of Christ as given to Peter and the other apostles. God is not interested in our theological debates. We must put our faith in Jesus, not the traditions of men who lived 1500 years after the time of Christ. But most important of all is this: If we do not love our enemies and pray for them, we are not Christ’s disciples. Jesus, I trust in You!

  15. Harlan Urwiler says:

    The great thing about being a Christian is having the chance to love other people different from ourselves. After all, Jesus died for the sins of all mankind of all ages (John 3: 16). No human person is so unloveable that God will not forgive their sin if they wish to be saved. People have free will to choose. However, any one who comes to God must be contrite, and truly sorry for their sins. Christ’s Church is universal because the Lord loves all people: caucasian, negro, asian, hispanic, african. As a Protestant under the influence of theologians like Martin Luther and John Calvin, I thought that God’s love for mostly for people of Anglo-Saxon ancestry. I was wrong, and I had to admit that I was wrong. I think that hyper-Calvinism is largely the result of a psychological need to be accepted by God. It seduces people into thinking they have an irrevocable ticket to Heaven no matter what they do! Rather than relying on faith, trust, and simple obedience to our Lord someone like myself tried to trust in a man-made theology and a partisan spirit of division to fill the emptiness in my heart. The truth is that the emptiness in our hearts can only be filled by the love of Jesus, especially through the Eucharist from the altar of the Lord. We are one body in Him, and we do not stand alone.

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