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      The Debate I Didn't Know I Was In... (Updated 9/9/08 - FINAL)

      Monday, April 14, 2008

      UPDATE 9/9/08:

      Before you set out to read any of this, know that the following post was written in April of 2008. Since then, Josh contacted me with a sincere letter of apology - one that I accept wholeheartedly. We've reconciled our differences in terms of methodology, and I believe it's beneficial to include our correspondence here before you even set out to read the rest of the post. It's a testimony of the grace of God working in the hearts of those who don't deserve it (myself included). If it wasn't for God's grace, I know I couldn't have forgiven Josh. All praises to Him. Here are the emails from 9/9/08:

      Lane,

      I hope this message finds you well. I wanted to write and offer you a sincere apology for some of the things that happened a few months ago. To say that a lot can happen in a short time is an understatement. I've been involved in quite a bit more discussion with opposing viewpoints since then, and I began to think about the course of action that I took with you. I've tried to implement the golden rule in the situation, and I realize that I would have felt the same way you did had someone acted toward me in that manner. It was poor judgment on my part to publish our comments on my Bebo page in the manner and format that I did, ESPECIALLY without even discussing it with you first. As I prepare to enter seminary next year and become acquainted with more Christian scholars, I realize that there is a proper way to handle doctrinal disagreements, and I did not follow that propriety. Above and beyond a Wesleyan Arminian, I want to be a defender of the Christian faith. In doing so, I see very clearly that I need the partnership of those in the Reformed tradition. Though I want to continue to discuss issues of soteriology, I don't want to do so with hostility toward Christian brethren. I've known I was wrong for quite some time now, and I thought the solution was to simply move on and not make the same mistake again. However, the Spirit of God, who is continuing to sanctify me, would not let me alone until I submitted this apology to you. I hope you will receive it with the same sincerity that it's been given.

      Sincerely,
      Josh Ratliff

      P.S. Feel free to post this in whatever forum you wish.

      My reply:

      Hi, Josh.

      First, I want you to know that I do not view your letter as a sign of weakness in the least. I know unbelievers would scoff at what you've written and declare it as such, but I see it as a sign of strength; that strength that comes from the Lord. I am truly appreciative of this. I believe it takes great courage to write as you've done, and I forgive you sincerely. Thanks for taking the time to write me about this. Since I included so much great material on that post I wrote, I'm going to leave it up, but I'm going to make this an update at the very beginning letting everyone know that you've apologized and we've reconciled before they even set out to read that article. I think it provides a great example of how God works in the hearts of all of us. I pray that your time in seminary goes well and that you continue to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior.

      Thanks again and take care,
      Lane




      Here's the original post from April of 2008:

      BREAKING NEWS! I figured I'd get this out so you could say you heard it here first!

      Apparently I was in a debate recently in Youtube comments. Yes, you heard right... I said "Youtube comments." Well at least that's what the person I replied to in the commenting section on Youtube is claiming it was. This writer finds it humorous that the one making these claims didn't believe he got a meaningful response or a coherent answer in 500 characters or less. :)

      Ligonier gave me permission to post a video by R.C. Sproul that deals with how salvation is because of God's choice and not because of our works. Since it's on Youtube, as with most of the videos I post, I allow comments. I received one from a person by the name of JoshRatliff who started off with saying,
      "As the Arminians are also accused, Sproul approaches this text with the presuppositions derived from seminal truths given by Calvin. "Hate" is an idiom of preference(Lk. 14:26). "Election" has a much broader term when taken in context with the whole of Scripture(1 Tim 5:21, 1 Pet 2:6). Also, I Pet 1:2 debunks the point he was attempting to make about foreknowledge. There are other great truths that can be discussed in in Rom 9 concerning choice. Anyone can e-mail me to finish the discussion."
      If anyone has any idea what he's saying about the "Hate" issue, please share it with me because I'm still confused as to it all. The rest of the comment pretty much showed that he doesn't believe that God chooses people unto salvation even though Scripture says differently. (Eph. 1:4-5)

      Well, I responded back to the part I actually followed in his comment and a few more comments after that then "Waalah!" - all of a sudden, he claims we were involved in a debate and claims victory for himself by such statements as "It is a little lengthy, but at least read over it, and you'll get a feel for the Calvinist's erroneous position." and "[I HAVE RECEIVED NO FURTHER RESPONSES FROM EITHER CALVINIST]" Obviously Mr. Ratliff needed to give himself an "atta-boy" for his ability to utterly confuse the opposite side. (Apparently he needed to, too, since it's been posted for 10 days and only one person has posted a response comment as opposed to his earlier post that is boasting 20.) You can read all of our comments here and his reply to them here. He starts off this endeavor by saying
      "This is a recent debate that I engaged in with a Calvinist by the name of Lane Chaplin. The first comment that you'll read is my response to a video Chaplin had posted on YouTube. This video contained R.C. Sproul's teaching on Romans 9. Sproul was misusing the text in order to preach his doctrine that God predestines man giving him no choice in his salvation. Things really got interesting when Chaplin abandoned the debate altogether and allowed his friend who goes by "5xSola" to take over. From the beginning, you will see that Chaplin had no real understanding of my position. We had to spend a great deal of time at first getting past his accusations of me trying to change a part of speech in Romans 8. If you don't wish to read through all of that, simply scroll about half way down to the dividing line where "5xSola" begins responding and you'll actually see some more intelligent interaction.

      It is a little lengthy, but at least read over it, and you'll get a feel for the Calvinist's erroneous position. Again, the debate is more informative toward the end. You might be unfamiliar with some of the terminology we use, but feel free to contact me and ask any questions you like. I would be more than happy to discuss it with you!"
      (emphasis mine)

      "From the beginning, you will see that Chaplin had no real understanding of my position." Amen. I still don't. It's kind of impossible if one doesn't explain it, Mr. Ratliff. Knowledgeable readers will read the comments and see the utter obfuscation in the comments. Several people that I sent this to agreed that he wasn't exactly "being clear" in what he was putting forth.

      Let me say now that I don't devote an enormous amount of time reading and giving serious thought to Youtube comments. Whether it's the professing atheist "educating" me about Mithras or the Satanist giving random assertions followed with "Hail Satan", I just haven't found Youtube commenting to be an edifying medium as a whole. Not only that but other responsibilities take time. For example, this week I'm helping James White gather material for his upcoming debate so when I come across a comment that begins ""Hate" is an idiom of preference(Lk. 14:26)" I generally reject or approve them, maybe post a response (within 500 characters, of course :) ) and move on. Occasionally I do have some sincerely want to ask a question or even disagree with me on stuff without resorting to obfuscation and presenting their discussions with amity, but those are few and far between. After being on there for a year and posting videos, I can pretty much tell the sincere comments apart from those that support the "Greggian Ambiguity" philosophy. I will say that although Mr. Ratliff wasn't clear with what he presented, he was very cordial in his private messages to me on Youtube when he informed me that Youtube wasn't allowing him to comment on the video when he tried despite everyone else who tried being able to and his ability to comment on other videos.

      Eventually, after asking several friends to read the comments and try to make heads or tails of what Mr. Ratliff was saying, myself and others gave up because there's only so much obfuscation that one can take. It's true that there hasn't been much of a serious apologetic based on exegeting Scripture from those who oppose Reformed theology just as we saw in last week's debate with James White and Steve Gregg which I was really looking forward to because it was said that "Gregg was the one to beat." (endquote) To say I was disappointed is an understatement. If you have to make other people utterly confused as to what you're saying and what your position is to then go off and claim victory for yourself and say the other party didn't really approach the topic intellectually, well, that just shows how coherent your position actually is. All those who heard James White and Steve Gregg last week can attest to that. It's called "assuming your position". For example, Mr. Ratliff basically asserted things like "Also, I Pet 1:2 debunks the point he was attempting to make about foreknowledge." Oh, so that ends all debate apparently. It's random assertions and assuming your position that makes Arminianism or any non-Calvinist position fall flat when it's taken in light of all of Scripture. At least when Calvinists say "this is this" they can go to this and this chapter and verse to show you where it is, take Scripture as a whole, and exegete it from there. I've seen very often that non-Calvinists can find something in the Bible like the word "foreknoweldge" (which is a noun) and assume that it's that way throughout Scripture even though it's a verb in Romans 8:29! Even after all this, I still don't agree that ignorance is bliss, though. I was Arminian Southern Baptist and one time and miserable. It should really come as no surprise at this point to share that Mr. Ratliff is an advocate for Dave Hunt's position on Calvinism as you can see here on his website. Take his poll for example:

      In light of my recent debate and video, what is your view on salvation?
      a) I believe that a person must choose to repent and be saved. (Anthropological Freedom)
      b) I believe that a person must work hard to go to heaven.
      c) I believe that God predestines certain men to be saved without any choice of their own. (Calvinism)

      The video he speaks of is Dave Hunt's. Yes, folks; Dave Hunt. Those of us who are familiar with Hunt's "work" in the field of Reformed Theology may find it ironic that Mr. Ratliff accuses people of not approaching topics intellectually yet promotes Hunt in this respect.

      Again, here are the comments, here is his post, and Advil is available online here.


      Editor's Note: Mr. Ratliff has informed me in the comment section that his website is a personal blog which is why he used the term "debate" even though it is public to the entire world and anyone possessing a computer with an internet connection. If all you have to do is claim a site to be personal to say whatever you want however you want, then what would stop me from doing that here or on the Youtube site regardless of the audience and regardless of the facts?

      Ah, that's right... integrity.


      For those of you who read the assertion about "corporate election" by Mr. Ratliff and are still a little puzzled by it, you may be interested in this presentation by James White. He refutes the point within the first 20 minutes. Mr. Ratliff has challenged me to an audio debate, but taking into account how the last one went :) and my other responsibilities, I'll pass for now; in the future, perhaps. In the meantime, you can listen to people much better qualified than myself that I have learned from who have already refuted the arguments time and time again in the past. For example, give this 20 minutes in. I'm sure you will find it edifying... unless you promote Huntegesis, that is.:




      UPDATE 4/15/08:

      Mr. Ratliff wrote a new post called "The Calvinist" where he makes the following statements. I'll just answer them now for argument's sake:


      I received an e-mail on YouTube a few moments ago, and apparently my Calvinist friends have happened across my Bebo page. They don't seem too pleased with my posting their comments. They really seem to be offended that I called it a debate. Lane Chaplin wrote in a blog on his page that he found it "humorous. "
      That was Jack (5xSolas) who emailed him. He let me know about it in a message I read after I got back this evening. It appears that Mr. Ratliff continues to read things into texts. I will clear the air now, by saying, "I AM NOT OFFENDED". I made the comment "I find it humorous..." because I find it humorous. It wasn't because I wanted some special meaning read into what I wrote. Apparently eisegesis isn't novel to Scripture for Mr. Ratliff in terms of his view of the Biblical doctrine of predestination. I find it humorous that someone took comments from a Youtube page, posted them on their site, and titled it "Debating Calvinism: Josh Ratliff and Lane Chaplin." That's what I find humorous. Apparently I'm not alone in my observation, either. Many people greeted me tonight on my arrival to James White's chatroom to "console me for the loss". (Yes, they were expresssing sarcasm.) He further stated:

      "5 x Sola" called it the "great covert debate." I suppose they were upset because it wasn't official with a moderator and so forth."

      If someone can read this post and get the idea that I was upset in an angry way, we can talk about getting help with your eisegesis in this matter, too. Just email me. I am upset in the fact that someone is trying to promulgate that it was a debate whether official or not. These are Youtube comments, folks. Let me repeat for those obfuscationally challenged... "These are Youtube comments."
      They claim that I was "confusing." You can decide for yourself. Chaplin was the one who decided to stop commenting altogether after I expressly told him that I would clarify anything "confusing" about my position. Instead of doing this, you will see from his blog that he just chooses to make light of my comments saying that he has no idea what I'm not talking about. In light of this, I have challenged him to a moderated audio debate. I'll keep you posted concerning the details.
      Certainly you can decide for yourself. If you read that and understand what he's saying in the majority of those comments, please enlighten me. Mr. Ratliff's attempt at "clarifying his position" included such assertions as "Concerning election, I'm not refuting it, I'm seeking to let the Scriptures speak- not simply read redemption into Rom. 9:11." and "I was not refuting that God is the noun and foreknew is the verb in Rom8:29. But if you take Piper's view on foreknowledge, 1Pet1:2 would read,"Elect according to the election of God." Rom 8:29 would be equally redundant." ...Yeah. As far as the debate is concerned, I've already addressed that above. You may be able to read about my decline in a post on his site soon where he may state that he won another "debate" by default declination. Just a guess if prior actions prove to repeat themselves. He continues:
      In other news, "5x Sola" has responded to more of my comments. I have too much philosophy homework to put them together in the same format as the last blog. (Plus, I'm afraid the Calvinists might find my house if I do, JK!) At any rate you can view the rest of the debate (oops, I mean comments) here:
      If any of my Calvinist brethren aren't having their baby-eating night tonight, perhaps you might like to respond to him here, too. As I've already stated, I gave up wading through obfuscation a long time ago, but I may still give it a shot depending on what's posted in the future, time permitting, and Lord willing. If you decide to, remember the link for Advil is still posted here for our convenience.


      UPDATE 4/16/08:

      Mr. Ratliff saw fit to write "one last update" in which he says "I know that you all are probably as tired of this as I am, but I wanted to give one last update as to the situation with the Calvinists." Apparently he's so tired of the issue he initially brought up that he wanted to write another post. ...Yeah. Also, he claims that his comments weren't confusing because he's found people who haven't found them confusing, either. When I played basketball, didn't do well, and knew it, my Mom always told me that I did great, too. Family members and close friends don't count necessarily, Mr. Ratliff. I've had people I don't even know read your comments and tell me that you run around the situations presented and obfuscate points made, sir. I sincerely hope you aren't relying on those.

      I'm not going to comment on this issue anymore after this; I'm conserving rope. :) If you read this, that's probably all that needs to be said.

      "Running scared",
      Lane


      One last thing to address that I meant to in the last paragraph, but didn't. Mr. Ratliff said, "The sad part in all of this is that it has served as a diversion from the main issue, and that is the Calvinist position of unconditional election. I really want people to know the truth that God's grace is a free gift that takes absolutely no work or effort to receive, and this is one avenue that I thought would be beneficial."

      Here are plenty of resources for you and those who you want to know the truth to study, Mr. Ratliff.

      Here are a few to stream, too:
















      Here's a little more info on Dave Hunt's "credibility":





      In light of recent events, I find these three sermons quite appropriate.










      END OF POST

      13 comments:

      JS.W. Smith said...

      Is the new tactic in Arminian warfare covert debate? This is more of a personal appraisal, but what a puffed up prideful kid. It is amazing how he presented that. I like the conclusion in all CAPS:

      "[I HAVE RECEIVED NO FURTHER RESPONSES FROM EITHER CALVINIST]"

      Is it just me, or does it appear Josh is trying to gain some clout there at the end by 'silencing' the Calvinists?

      I'm seriously disappointed to have seen this. We all fail by some figure in intellectual propensity and moral suave, but I still like to think better of people. Unfortunately, the big man on campus staging and the dishonest approach to debate by Josh is far too shameful. Even more so taken in the context of how this bebo-blog is an extension of Josh’ Friday Bible studies.

      I remember the days when I hated Calvinism and authored my own work against the T-U-L-I-P. There but for the grace of God would I still sit. It wasn’t until I defended Spurgeon, MacArthur, Piper and some others with a fellow Arminian on their "right" to be "Christians". This person hated these men after coming across a certain web page. I was going through point by point from Scripture showing how Calvinism was a well thought out systematic theology by fellow believers when it hit me; Acts 13:48. There is no other way to read that verse and for the first time I seen it properly. I spent the next 4 months day and night digging for the truth through the OT/NT as though scales had been lifted from my eyes.

      As a side note what a careful use of Revelation 3:20 on Josh’ bebo homepage. In light of, as Josh states, "Anthropological Freedom", I know exactly where that verse is headed.

      The infamously silenced,
      5xSolas

      Josh Ratliff said...

      Well, Lane, congratulations you found my "website." I'm not sure how familiar you are with bebo, but it is a safe place where friends who actually know each other get on to communicate. When I say "debate," my friends know exactly what I mean. They know it is not a formal, moderated debate. Several of them have been studying these issues and they wanted to see the exchange. Furthermore, I clarified by making sure they knew it took place on Youtube. Also, don't worry, I'm not a widely read author. It was probably not viewed by any more than 50 people (as you can see by only one comment being posted). Youtube is public. You act as if I have committed some kind of crime by calling it a debate.

      And, yes, you succeeded to point out my comments that were not clear. I tried to clarify those points throughout the rest of the convo. But of course you didn't bring those up in your blog. I wanted to be sure that I posted all of your comments on bebo. The reason I said that I had received no further comments was simply for that reason. I wanted my friends to know that that was all of the comments. Since then, "5 x sola" has presented more, and I am going to post them as soon as I can.

      Later on in our debate (or I mean comments, sorry), I admitted that I hadn't been clear enough. When you said:

      "Ok, I'm just going to reply and tell you that I have asked other people to read your comments and neither they nor I have any idea what you're talking about. Are you a proponent of conditional election? This would cut to the chase of the matter, and we could deal with that instead of things like "Hate" being idioms of preference and so forth."

      I responded:

      "I'm sorry if I haven't been clear enough. But I know for sure that I have said that election of individuals is contingent (which means conditional). I have also made it clear that Jesus Christ is truly God's elect from the foundation of the world. You have failed to respond to my comments about Piper's assertions that election and foreknowledge are one in the same. But you are correct about one thing... If I had used the term 'conditional,' It would have made things simpler."

      You're right, I didn't explain fully what I meant about hate. I was simply saying that God didn't hate Esau to the extent that he desired to damn him to hell. It was an idiom of preference. And you would see that if you simply referenced Luke 14:26 which I gave you. But instead, you just make light of my point and say that you don't know what I'm not talking about. This shows that your studies are one-sided. You acted as though you had never heard about election being corporate when it is taught by a major opponent of Calvinsim, Robert Shank (and the Bible). James White at least acknowledges him as "a horrible resource."

      So, if you don't like your comments being made public to my friends, I'm sorry. But Youtube is public. I'm not sure why this was such a problem.

      I present to you a standing challenge to an audio, moderated debate. If you're interested, you can contact me to work out the details at joshdavid04@hotmail.com.

      JS.W. Smith said...

      Where to begin? This is so dramatically amazing and yes even "humorous". Save the grace of God I sense someone has a future doing research for Hunt.

      Seriously though, I don't even want to respond anymore. Maybe I'm the naive one thinking I can have a conversation headed for truth.

      Lane, I think you plainly seen the placement of humor in the whole "covert debate" idea.

      Josh, I am far from frustrated. In fact, I had a V8 (low sodium) to celebrate my co-loss. Its just sad that a debate had been announced and a winner declared without everyone knowing. Had I known it were a debate I would've at least brought two translations; one for each hand to avoid the 'Eisegetical TKO'...ding ding ding

      Patrick Eaks said...

      Lane,
      Thanks for your post, it was very telling. I have had many talks with those in the emergent camp that do the same thing. They try to use confusion as a form of winning the argument! I believe the reason they do this is because they have NO truth to stand on, so they must make it sound confusing and hope that others will just agree without questioning. 1Cor. 14:33 - For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints. Keep up the good work.
      Pat

      Joel Tay said...

      Mr. Ratliff,

      You got to be joking with eisegesis as bad as what you are doing.

      1 Peter 1:2 support your position? LOL...

      1Pe 1:1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who are elect exiles of the dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in the sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and for sprinkling with his blood: May grace and peace be multiplied to you

      You got to be joking.

      And Romans 9 teaching corporate election and nothing about individual election? You're pulling a "Dave Hunt'' aren't you?

      John Piper completely demolishes that argument with his book on Justification.

      The Justification of God: An Exegetical and Theological Study of Romans 9:1-23
      Highly recommended for those with basic Greek knowledge.

      Anonymous said...

      Honestly, I think this blog is childish and immature. It's merely a rag session on this Mr. Ratliff.. And I'm sure confusing u poor little Calvinists is an easy task..

      Lane Chaplin said...

      "Anonymous", obviously you don't think and believe that so much that you'd even include your real name and stand behind what you think. Your opinion alone is not very convincing and "drive by postings" are, in themselves, immature and childish. Kudos for your "bravery and courage." Maybe I'm wrong and this is just a hunch, but maybe the reason you partook in a posting such as yours is so you and Mr. Ratliff would have a topic of conversation at a family reunion in the future. Like I said, just a hunch...

      Josh Ratliff said...

      Mr. Chaplin, you've done a great job at diverting from the issues. You say you will no longer comment, and that's perfectly fine. I want you know that though I stand behind my comments in my first blog that you have no real understanding of any position besides your own, I wasn't making fun of you. You've had to resort to this. People that I have never met before (not my cousins) have seen your comments and realize that this is an issue of your personal pride being hurt as a result of my first blog. I'm sure the people in the James White chatroom won't tell you that. But if you're chatroom buddies are right, and I am running around the situations presented, I stand ready to debate with a moderating time keeper present. Through this venue, we can have an equally distributed session where you can press me with as many hard questions as you like.

      As I have said before, I still have great respect for Calvinists no matter how vigorously I disagree with some of their positions.

      Sincerely,
      Josh

      Lane Chaplin said...

      "You've had to resort to this. People that I have never met before (not my cousins) have seen your comments and realize that this is an issue of your personal pride being hurt as a result of my first blog."

      Believe what you wish aside from the facts, Mr. Ratliff. It hasn't stopped you yet. Regardless if Dave Hunt himself realizes this, I still stand with others in saying that it is an issue of pride and integrity on your part. I wouldn't dare take comments someone gave on a site like Youtube, claim it to be a debate with the other person, and then claim victory for myself on a personal blog that I really had no intention of the other person ever seeing. Apparently we have more differences than just theology, Mr. Ratliff. This is the issue of contention and yet, you wish to turn it into something it isn't. Like I said before, it's nothing new on your part and hardly surprising.

      A debate in the future wouldn't be unthinkable. I've read several things you've posted on your website, and if you can ween yourself from obfuscation, perhaps we can discuss some of the points you've addressed there. It's easier when you believe point A to just discuss point A and not turn it into some "guess what I'm saying now" game.

      As far as your respect is concerned, it's like Dave Hunt saying he has much respect for exegesis and the reformers. It's not credible and hardly valuable to say the least. I have an mp3 I could send you by R.C. Sproul about considering your source when taking into account another's criticism or admiration. Just let me know. The people I've talked to (not all in James White's chat room, btw) have read all your comments because I've linked to all of them and still said that you're a lost cause and wouldn't waste anymore time on a situation as such. Perhaps a debate would be in order in the future. In the meantime, you can practice staying on a particular topic, sir. I suggest that you don't go to Steve Gregg for pointers, though.

      In closing as the last time I will comment on this situation, I'd just like to point out one last thing. The comments that are decidedly against your position have been made other places than here, but the ones posted on this blog have basically made appeal to examining the situation at least on some Biblical basis as a situation such as Joel Tay's and Patrick Eaks'. The comments on yours have been such as "Lane is afraid!..It seems to the modern observer that you have him cornered, He's not even willing to discuss his so "Passionate Faith"!.U did the right thing by challenging him,and putting the ball in his court!" and "You could make your bebo private so only "friends" can view it and then weirdos wouldnt internet stalk you. ;)"

      If you agree with the latter comment then we must disagree on the meaning of "weird", too because, you see, Mr. Ratliff, I would define weird as something like taking comments off a Youtube page, posting them on a public site that I believe only my friends would ever see because I have no whim that the person I speak of with their full name is ever going to see them, and then claiming victory for myself. That is what I would define as "weird". Since it's obvious that you don't think so, it's also obvious that we disagree on this matter, too.

      As I said, this is my last comment on the situation. You have the opportunity to comment freely on your "private" site, but it's your last comment here, as well, Mr. Ratliff.

      Anonymous said...

      The Word of God will always be the winner of any theological debate!

      Ike

      Susan said...

      Looking at all the recent developments in this situation, it looks like Mr. Ratliff is the one that is making this personal. He is insisting on a debate, when Lane has been pointing him to sermons and other resources of people who have refuted these arminian points ALREADY. This isn’t some new topic Ratliff is stirring up, Calvinism and Arminianism have been disputed for years and there are plenty of scholars and apologists that have carefully done exegesis of the scriptures and backed up the points….so really how is Lane running away afraid like people on Ratliff’s blog are saying? Lane is actually the one with the clear cut message and he is out-rightly putting that message in bright neon lights for Ratliff to see. I also found Ratliff’s points extremely hard to follow and quit muddled, myself. But it seems Ratliff is the one with the personal issue or else why would he keep insisting on Lane explaining things to him or to take him on in a debate? To me that is like me asking Lane to explain the doctrine of election to me…and in response Lane sends me a message back with a link to a sermon of someone like MacArthur or James White or R.C. Sproul that explains to me the doctrine of election. And instead of listening to the sermon and comparing whatever was said to the scriptures…I whine and pout and throw a tantrum back to Lane begging him to explain it to me himself. “No Lane, I have to hear it from you!” haha, I realize that is kind of an exaggeration….but do you see my point? If Lane was running away hiding, do you think he would be posting you tube videos on Calvinism…or have an entire blog with sermons everywhere on the very topics Ratliff is refuting. It is all right there for Ratliff to see, but he insists on making this a personal issue and ‘proving Lane wrong.’ But if Ratliff isn’t going to deal honestly with what has been presented to him thus far…then I don’t blame Lane for not jumping right in and starting a debate (or continuing the one that apparently was already “happening”). There are better things to do out there than to sit and waste time with someone who hasn’t been honest from the get go.

      JM Vergara said...

      Lane, this whole ordeal you've went through has significantly hurt my head. In every reply Mr. Ratliff never fails to show his pride, and failure to humble himself before the Word of God.

      You are in my prayers brother.

      C.H. Spurgeon's Salvation by Works, Criminal is indeed a great pick.

      Victoria Day said...

      Wow! I have to tell this story....

      About five+ years ago my son and I went to see Dave Hunt speak at Calvary Chapel South Bay in California. I had enjoyed his book "The Woman Rides the Beast" and was looking forward to the evening. Unfortunately, his book was out about that time and some of the first things out of his mouth were "There's a heresy going around the church these days and it's called CALVINISM. Being a Calvinist, I listened to the same things that were on the videos here and shook my head in disbelief. Not only was it obvious that he was unknowledgable of the teaching, but the congregation hung on his every word! Needless to say, I was sorely disappointed and saddened by such misinformation.

      Afterward, I was standing outside the sanctuary with my son explaining to him the inconsistencies and false statements of Mr. Hunt. A man walked by and said, "Don't listen to her brother." It took us by surprise and the man repeated his warning not to listen to me. My son yelled, "SHE'S MY MOTHER!" The man replied, "I don't care who she is - if she doesn't agree with Dave Hunt, she's a heretic!" Passersby got into it, defending my right to hold my own beliefs on the matter.

      My son and I both believe in the Sovereignty of God and election. Mr. Hunt, to a Christian who knows and has studied and been given the gift of spiritual sight in the matter, is completely in error.

      To God Be ALL Glory.

      Victoria Day
      Narrowgatejournal.wordpress.com

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