BOOKS & PAPERS ON CALVINISM

 

Note:

Hebrews 5:14 teaches that mature Christians should be capable of discerning between good and evil, between true doctrine and the
doctrine of devils.  The content included below is intended to provide the diligent truth-seeker with a thorough understanding of this topic. We at Inquisitive Christianity do not endorse all of the content included in these publications. After all, it is a rare gift to discover a teaching with which one has no disagreement. Nevertheless, we believe that these teachings offer valuable information for those who seek the truth and are spiritually mature enough to exercise discernment.

 

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Our Books:

 

Along Calvin's Road (vol. 1–3)
Written by Timothy Zebell; Edited by Eugene Harmon

 

 

Is God the Author of Sin? (vol. 1)

Is God the author of sin? At first glance, the answer appears to be simple and straight forward. Nevertheless, it may be surprising what Calvinism’s answer to this question truly is. This book may even surprise the Calvinist.

Using a plethora of footnotes, Is God the Author of Sin? delves into the mind and writings of some of Calvinism’s most influential theologians. Calvinists often say, “Let Calvin speak for himself.” This book does just that in providing the Calvinists the opportunity to answer this question in their own words. It is a treasure trove of Calvinist quotations and will prove to be a useful resource in anyone’s library.

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Did Christ Die for Everyone? (vol. 2)

The cross of Christ stands as an eternal monument of Christ’s love for mankind … or does it? Debate rages over the question of for whom Christ died. Did Christ die for all of mankind or only for a specific number of chosen individuals? At the heart of this question is the very gospel message itself.

Calvinism has obscured seemingly straight-forward passages of Scripture such as John 3:16 and 1 John 2:2. In limiting Christ’s atonement to a select few, Calvinism has also limited God’s love and His desire for men to be saved. Did Christ Die for Everyone? considers the implications of this doctrine and examines it against clear Scripture.

Written for the average Christian pursuing the truth of God’s Word, this book addresses numerous passages of Scripture to learn what the Bible truly teaches. Every Christian would do well to consider the arguments in this book.

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Does Man Have Freedom to Choose? (vol. 3)

Freedom is one of mankind’s most cherished attributes, but is freedom of the will merely a illusion? Did man once possess a genuinely free will only to forfeit it when Adam and Eve fell into sin? Is man incapable of doing good or of choosing God? Does God foreordain some to eternal life and others to eternal punishment? If someone rejects Calvinism, must he embrace Arminianism? Does Arminianism teach a works-based salvation? These and many other questions are addressed in Does Man Have Freedom to Choose?

The relationship between man’s will and God’s sovereignty is perhaps one of philosophy and Christendom’s greatest questions. Nevertheless, this book is written for the average Christian who wishes to quickly and simply consider the issue. Filled with Scripture and a plethora of quotations from notable Calvinists, Does Man Have Freedom to Choose? will prove to be a useful resource in anyone’s library.

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Books Opposed to Calvinism:

 

The Other Side of Calvinism
by Laurence Vance

 

 

The definitive treatment of the subject, this book provides a detailed historical examination and critical biblical analysis of the philosophical speculations and theological implications of Calvinism. Extensively documented from Calvinistic authorities, this book presents the other side to the over 400-year-old debate over the doctrines of Calvinism. The book contains ten chapters, along with a preface, seven appendixes, footnotes, and bibliography. It is further enhanced by subject, name, and Scripture indexes.

 

 

What Love Is This?
by Dave Hunt
 

 

Many sincere, Bible-believing Christians are Calvinists only by default. Thinking that the only choice is between Calvinism (with its presumed doctrine of eternal security) and Arminianism (with its teaching that salvation can be lost), and confident of Christ's promise to keep eternally those who believe in Him, they therefore consider themselves to be Calvinists. It takes only a few simple questions to discover that most Christians are largely unaware of what John Calvin and his early followers of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries actually believed and practiced. Nor do they fully understand what most of today's leading Calvinists believe.


Although there are disputed variations of the Calvinist doctrine, among its chief proponents (whom we quote extensively in context) there is general agreement on certain core beliefs. Many evangelicals who think they are Calvinists will be surprised to learn of Calvin's belief in salvation through infant baptism and of his grossly un-Christian behavior, at times, as the "Protestant Pope" of Geneva, Switzerland. Most shocking of all, however, is Calvinism's misrepresentation of God, who “is love.”—Dave Hunt

 

 

Why I Am Not a Calvinist
by Jerry Walls
 
 
What's wrong with Calvinism? Since the Reformation, Calvinism has dominated much of evangelical thought. It has been so well established that many Christians simply assume it to be the truest expression of Christian doctrine. But Calvinism has some serious biblical and theological weaknesses that unsettle laypeople, pastors and scholars alike. God is sovereign. All evangelical Christians--whether Arminians or Calvinists--have no doubt about this fundamental truth. But how does God express his sovereignty? Is God a master puppeteer, pulling our strings? Or has he graciously given his children freedom to respond to his love? In this eminently readable book, Jerry L. Walls and Joseph R. Dongell explore the flaws of Calvinist theology. Why I Am Not a Calvinist is a must-read for all who struggle with the limitations of this dominant perspective within evangelical theology.

 

 

 

Books Supporting Calvinism:

 

Institutes of the Christian Religion
by John Calvin 

Institutes of the Christian Religion by John Calvin is an introduction to the Bible and a vindication of Reformation principles by one of the Reformation's finest scholars. At the age of twenty-six, Calvin published several revisions of his Institutes of the Christian Religion, a seminal work in Christian theology that altered the course of Western history and that is still read by theological students today. It was published in Latin in 1536 and in his native French in 1541, with the definitive editions appearing in 1559 (Latin) and in 1560 (French). The book was written as an introductory textbook on the Protestant faith for those with some learning already and covered a broad range of theological topics from the doctrines of church and sacraments to justification by faith alone. It vigorously attacked the teachings of those Calvin considered unorthodox, particularly Roman Catholicism, to which Calvin says he had been "strongly devoted" before his conversion to Protestantism. The over-arching theme of the book--and Calvin's greatest theological legacy--is the idea of God's total sovereignty, particularly in salvation and election.

 

 

Bondage of the Will
by Martin Luther

 

The Bondage of the Will is fundamental to an understanding of the primary doctrines of the Reformation. In these pages, Luther gives extensive treatment to what he saw as the heart of the gospel. Free will was no academic question to Luther; the whole gospel of the grace of God, he believed, was bound up with it and stood or fell according to the way one understood it. Luther affirms our total inability to save ourselves and the sovereignty of divine grace in our salvation. He upholds the doctrine of justification by faith and defends predestination as determined by the foreknowledge of God.

 

 

The Sovereignty of God
by A.W. Pink
 

Who is regulating affairs on this earth today-God, or the Devil? That God reigns supreme in Heaven, is generally conceded; that He does so over this world, is almost universally denied-if not directly, then indirectly. More and more are men in their philosophizing and theorizing, relegating God to the background. Take the material realm. Not only is it denied that God created everything, by personal and direct action, but few believe that He has any immediate concern in regulating the works of His own hands. Everything is supposed to be ordered according to the (impersonal and abstract) "laws of Nature". Thus is the Creator banished from His own creation. Therefore we need not be surprised that men, in their degrading conceptions, exclude Him from the realm of human affairs.

 

 

Chosen by God
by R.C. Sproul

With nearly 200,000 copies sold in its 25 years, Chosen by God by Dr. R. C. Sproul is a contemporary classic on predestination, a doctrine that isn't just for Calvinists, says Sproul. It is a doctrine for all biblical Christians. In this updated and expanded edition of Chosen by God, Sproul shows that the doctrine of predestination doesn't create a whimsical or spiteful picture of God, but paints a portrait of a loving God who provides redemption for radically corrupt humans. We choose God because he has opened our eyes to see his beauty; we love him because he first loved us. There is mystery in God's ways, but not contradiction.

 

 

The Potter's Freedom
by James White

 

 

Norman Geisler's Chosen but Free sparked a firestorm of controversy when he labeled Calvinism "theologically inconsistent, philosophically insufficient, and morally repugnant." James White steps into the breach with his cogent response. His systematic refutation of Geisler's argument will help the reader understand what the Reformed faith really teaches about divine election and how Reformed thought conforms to the Gospel.

 

 

*The above book overviews come either from the books' cover jackets, or from the posts on Amazon.com.