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Sean E. Harris | Fayetteville, North Carolina
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Berean Baptist Church
517 Glensford Drive
Fayetteville, NC 28314
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Sean E. Harris
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Calvinist Controversy at Louisiana College
Series:  News In Focus  · 494 of 1128
2/28/2013 (THU)
  |  Bible: Acts 10:4
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The latest front in the Baptist battle over Calvinism and Arminianism has opened at Louisiana College, where the administration has decided not to renew the contracts of three faculty members—Jason Hiles, Kevin McFadden and Ryan Lister. The latter two have doctorates from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, while Hiles's doctoral degree is from Southeastern Seminary. While President Joe Aguillard has not addressed the non-renewals directly, a recent blog post by him acknowledged that his “love for all Baptists including Calvinists, does not constitute our approval of its being advocated at Louisiana College.”
SERIES 494 OF 1128
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Sean E. Harris
Calvinist Controversy

News In Focus
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Berean Baptist Church
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Sean E. Harris
Calvinist Controversy

News In Focus
Berean Baptist Church
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  If you were blessed by this message, please add your comment ...
JeremyContact via email (6/13/2013)
from North Texas
“ Interesting thoughts. ”
What about Romans 3:11? Obviously, it is not true that none seek God in an absolute sense - rather that no one, of themselves, seek God. Paul says, in verse 10, that both Jew and Gentile has been proved to be under sin and then continues to say that none (in that context) seek God. So doesn't that rather confirm Cornelius' seeking of God as being of God as well? I think you are right when you say that God is beyond understanding and His ways beyond ours (infinitely so). As such, doesn't that tend to confirm (or certainly not invalidate) the Calvinist view that only God can draw a man and there is nothing that man can do of himself to seek God (because he can't, naturally speaking)? It was said that Cornelius' prayers would have been heard and yet the Calvinist says that the prayers of the unregenerate are not heard. Or is that the elect (not sure...)? Either way, I guess I don't see how that can be so in any context otherwise no prayers would ever be heard because no one could go from being unsaved to saved. Rather, if offered in faith (which is the gift of God) - however small that faith and however it might appear to men not to be "Christian", if God gave that to the man and drew him, how does that invalidate Calvinism? Maybe I don't know enough about it....

J.R. TContact via email (3/15/2013)
from Godwin, NC
“ The Elect are not born saved ”
Agree, but I believe we are preserved for later use at the right time. Who knows the ways of God. Before my conversion, I always felt like there was something out there, I was looking, waiting on something. I knew there was a God and I knew about Jesus, but I was totally walking in the flesh. Didn't want anything to do with God. But I had a Paul moment. One night in Jan 2010 change my life forever.

J.R. TContact via email (3/15/2013)
from Godwin, NC
“ Great Sermon! ”
Arminians or free willers like to quote John 3:16, but they never read and study the entire chapter. Almost half of the chapter is a conversation with Nicodemus. They never discern vs 8. Regeneration entirely of the Holy Spirit and He is a mystery, he moves as he pleases.

J.R. TContact via email (3/15/2013)
from Godwin, NC
“ Great Sermon! ”
After further study, I believe, cant prove it, but I believe that the centurion was the same centurion in MT27:54 and Luke 23:47. In Mt 27:54 he said Truly this was the Son of God and in Luke 23:47 He (the centurion) saw what was done and glorified God, and said this was a righteous man. Acts 10 was only about 6 or 7 yrs after Jesus was crucified. 33AD to about 40 AD. Maybe he was transferred from Jerusalem to Caesarea. Cant prove it only speculation, but I do believe he was already converted. God used him to work on Peter.

Ian Migala (3/10/2013)
from Minneapolis, Minnesota
“ The Elect Aren't Born Saved ”
It seems that Cornelius was elect, just not saved yet. God had awakened him and eventually sent him to Peter.

bereanContact via email (3/7/2013)
from so.fl
“ Great Sermon! ”
@tina...John 1:12-13, 3:3,5,8 comes b4 John 3:16 ??? U cant do 3:16 unless ur born again....

TinaContact via email (3/6/2013)
from Alberta, Canada
“ Great Sermon! ”
Scripture references: John 3:16 1Peter 1:2 2 Peter 3:9 My affirmation of this is the whole of scripture and the character of God.

Pastor Sean HarrisContact via email (3/6/2013)
from Fayetteville, North Carolina
“ RE: Joe Lee and Straw Men ”
Joe Lee, It would have been wonderful if you had been so kind as to articulate one of the straw men I set up so that I don't do that again. My intent was not set up straw men but instead show that God's Sovereignty in the salvation of the elect is a concept beyond any human's full comprehension.

joe lee (3/5/2013)
from usa
“ ”
I appreciate your attempt at this discussion but would have liked to have seen a more accurate description of calvinism. There were a number of straw men set up by sean, i think. Thank you though for the stimulating topic.

TinaContact via email (3/5/2013)
from Alberta, Canada
“ Great Sermon! ”
Just want to edit my comment, I'm not sure what happened there. It should read 'no question there' not ' no user ion there'. Thanks.

bereanContact via email (3/5/2013)
from so.fl
“ Great Sermon! ”
Look at verse appears Cornelius had heard the Word prior to Peter coming there....

Pas Bill (3/5/2013)
“ Reply to Tina ”
State your proof text, please.

Tina (3/4/2013)
from Alberta, Canada
“ Great Sermon! ”
God has an elect, no user ion there. He chooses people on the basis of His forknowledge of who will choose Him. This keeps Him both sovereign and just.

J.R. ThamesContact via email (3/3/2013)
from Godwin, NC
“ Great Sermon! ”
I have always interpret chapter as it is more about Peter than the centurion, Jesus is telling Peter to accept gentiles (Acts 10:34) and to leave the legalism of Judaism. We do not know when and where or how his conversion took place. I believe it he was already converted and was used by God.

Thomas SullivanContact via email (3/2/2013)
from Jenison, MI
“ Calvinism, Cornelius, and Theological Grids ”
Cornelius, if unconverted, could not properly be said to "fear God," because all such fear from an unregenerate heart would still consist in enmity against Him. Rom. 8:7 It would have no virtue, nor would God in anyway be obligated to notice it. (See Edwards' Freedom of the Will) It is more logical that he was "called out" by God by grace like Abraham was from Ur of the Chaldees. Acts 10 is the story of his gospel enlightenment, not his conversion. This isn't imposing our theological grid on the text, because we are being consistent with what the Bible says about all men in all ages. In an effort to render the doctrine more palatable, it is not helpful to confuse the matter by supposing Cornelius represents a unique case so we have to redefine the doctrines of man's innate inability and God's absolute sovereignty. The term pre-venient grace has no basis in Scripture. I just narrated a helpful sermon preached in 1755 on this subject. 013/02/03/john-blair---the-mean s-of-grace.aspx It explains that the means employed by the unregenerate are what God ORDINARILY blesses with salvation, but can never be the cause of it. P.S. I love to listen to you gentleman - Tom - a mailman in Grand Rapids, MI.

Thomas SullivanContact via email (3/2/2013)
from Jenison, MI
“ Calvinism, Cornelius, and conversion. ”
This was an interesting discussion, but I want to share some helpful comments not aiming to be hyper-critical. It is easier to just admit that Cornelius in Acts 10 was already converted but it pleased God to give him the special light of redemptive revelation in Christ. Pastor Sturms said that in a New Testament, Pauline sense Cornelius was not saved. But this is anachronistic language. Paul hadn't written anything yet, and Cornelius did not yet have redemptive revelation. Sean says that we take our theological grid and impose it on the text. My answer is that my theological grid as a fellow Reformed Baptist is the 1689 confession. If it is counter to my understanding of Acts 10, I am humble enough to suppose I may be misunderstanding the text. It is less problematic. Cornelius did not escape the effects of the Adamic Administration and therefore any inclination or holy affection cannot be prior to regeneration. Man by nature hates God, Romans 8:7, and is not subject to His law and lacks the moral ability to do so. So any volition towards God of any unregenerate man must be mercenary it could not possibly be virtuous let alone move God toward a "praying" man. That God blesses His own means that the sinner employs is pure mercy, and means are a way to that end, not the cause and e

bereanContact via email (3/1/2013)
from so.fl
“ Great Sermon! ”
This round table discussion should be passed to both sides...Amen

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  Sean E. Harris
Pastor Sean Harris has been the Senior Pastor for Berean Baptist Church and Academy in Fayetteville, NC since 2006. He served as a member, lay teacher and deacon at Berean from 1987 until he became the Senior Pastor. As the Senior Pastor, he oversees Berean’s ministry to over...

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