*DISCLAIMER: I am well aware that some Christians do not subscribe to rigid Calvinism. If you belong to a denomination that has a different from of it or has abandoned it altogether, there is no need to get your draws in a bunch.
Earlier this evening, I attended a concert at my daughters’ school for grades K-2. The concert went very well, the children all sang beautifully. As I watched them perform, I smiled to myself. Children make me happy, as their intellect and openness gives me hope that mankind can have a better future. All of a sudden, a thought crossed my mind: Calvinism. Now prior to attending the concert I was reading Frank Schaeffer’s latest memoir, so the thought is not as random as it may seem. With families from all over the world and various faiths represented, they were a microcosm of humanity itself. I looked up at the children, their faces beaming with pride and joy. And it occurred to me that, to those who believe in a strict form of Calvinism, some of these lovely children have already been condemned to spend eternity in hell. And not because of anything they will actually believe or even do in this life. No, they have been condemned because God supposedly looked “down the halls of time in eternity past” and played a celestial game of eeny meeny miny moe. Before we were conceived, before our parents even met, some were selected for damnation and others elected to salvation. The concept sounds so off to me. One random man is going to be SAVED through the blood of Jesus because God chose them!Another random man was not chosen and is going to burn in hell.
Yet those of us who question this are told we are the ones we the problem. How dare you question God? His ways are not our ways and his thoughts are not our thoughts! God said it, I believe it, that settles it! God is righteous and just at all times, you just can’t understand that because you are carnal-minded and have not been washed in the blood of Jesus! You’re a sinner, your sense of right and wrong is flawed and doesn’t count!
Maybe they have a point. Maybe my ways are not “his ways”. All I know is this: when I looked at those children singing tonight, something deep in me was completely disgusted with Calvinism and a strict adherence to TULIP. How can anyone look upon children and rationalize a doctrine? If questioning the morality of Calvinism makes me a corrupt sinner, so be it. I’ll take the label. What I will not do is support an idea that judges us all before we leave the womb.
5 thoughts on “Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moe”
I wasn’t aware of this TULIP concept in Christianity.. Thanks for sharing! It reminds me of the hadith about the unborn having 3 things written down when their souls are placed.. One of the things is whether they are going to heaven or hell. In which case why should I try BEING “good” if it’s already been determined? 🙂
Yes, TULIP is a bit extreme to me. But to be fair some Christians reject it. The whole concept of predestination is tricky. As you said, why bother if it’s all decided already? Then again I question the whole concept that we are innately sinful to begin with…
I remember learning in a college English class that Calvinism really took off around the same time as the Industrial Revolution in the the US. It was a way for the powerful who were standing to become wealthy in a way few had known before, to justify their excessive wealth. Somebody had to figure out a way to cast a holy glow on greed…JC’s doctines offered a solution. Through the lens of Calvinism, society could easily spot the entitled Elect — of course, they were the people in power. It’s really brilliant when you think about it.
This always bugged me as well when I was a Christian.
Oh, how I can relate to your thoughts on Calvinism! In fact, I had a, ahem, “talk” with God about this just recently when I was yelling in my kitchen at such a horrible, disgusting concept!