Are Friendly Calvinists an Endangered Species – Part 1

It’s no secret, dear ones, that the Reformed community has somehow managed to make a name for itself as, well, rude, arrogant, and ungracious. Ungracious? How is it possible that the group of believers that hold so tightly to the doctrines of Grace could act ungraciously? I’ve heard from several people over the last year that they agree with the doctrine, but struggle with the people professing it. So, for today’s episode we’re interviewing an Instagrammer who has done a great deal in changing that mindset. Not only are his posts purposefully reproachful of bad behavior on Social Media, but they’re edifying and encouraging to his followers. I hope others will see this, and follow FriendlyCalvinists example.

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Throughout his time on Instagram the FriendlyCalvinist has remained behind the scenes, making his time online about Gods glory and not about himself. Due to this, much of what he talks to us about is breaking news of sorts. We were so honored to be a platform for him to continue teaching believers how to act online. It’s always such a blessing to talk with fellow believers about the work God is doing through them. The interview was nearly three hours long, but there was too much great content to cut it, so we divided it into two parts. Next Monday we’ll drop part 2 where we get more into the details of Social Media, answering our listeners questions, and Shenanigans.

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Becca and I want to thank the FriendlyCalvinist for joining us on the program and sharing so much of his story with us. I hope you will all join me in praying for him, and his son, as they grow in the grace and the knowledge of the Lord. You can find the podcast on Podbean, Castbox, iHeart Radio, iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, Spotify, and the video on YouTube. Please don’t forget to like, share, subscribe, and comment to help us reach more believers and nonbelievers with the truth of Gods Word. Our hope is to continue to edify and encourage the Church, while convicting the lost with the Law and Gospel. As always, beloved Brethren, be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.

Thursday Book Review – Institutes of the Christian Religion Book 1

Good afternoon, dear ones, I hope this post has found you all well! I’m so excited about reviewing this book today, and I can’t wait to finish the rest of the books in the Institutes. I was actually really nervous when I began reading this book, assuming from the start that there must be some sort of scandalous teaching within. I suppose to the man-centered prosperity peddling churches I spent so much time in before being born again, it would have been terribly scandalous. This is probably why I put off reading it for so long, I don’t like contention. However, recently I saw someone on social media assert that Calvinists, also known as Reformed, follow a false god. That was awfully grievous to see, I have many friends who are Calvinists, some of you are probably reading this right now. Besides that, I’ve researched Calvin’s life and read some of his other writings and held a great deal of respect for him. Did this book change my mind, or in the least explain why anyone would consider it idolatry?

The answer, simply, is no. I didn’t read anything in this book that I haven’t read in Owens, Edwards, or Spurgeons work. Throughout each chapter I found nothing scandalous whatsoever, though he rightly hits the Roman Catholic Church hard for their falsehoods. He also deals with many others who had strayed from the Bible, and refutes them with the full counsel of Gods Word. I saw no Scripture taken out of context, or a point made without Biblical backup. In short, I can see no evidence for the assertion made on social media. Also, I must say, this book is an absolute delight!

The Institute was first published by John Calvin in 1536, though he continued updating it until 1560, when it’s final edition was published. There are four books, each tackling different major theological issues, patterned after the Apostles Creed. It helped me to think more deeply about God, and His sovereign will. Calvin’s love for God, Gods Word, and Gods people are clear in his writing, and were a genuine encouragement to me. His explanations were thorough, yet easy to understand, even for someone like me! I hope that more people will read his writings before accusing him of being a false brother, and before accusing those who admire him of following a false god. I, personally, can not wait to read the other books and review them for you all.

Beloved, we should never glorify any one man, all glory goes to God, as Calvin himself would have wanted. I can’t imagine he would take to kindly to having a group named after him. In fact, woven between Scripture, he speaks of Church fathers, and believers who had come and gone long before his time. It is a blessing that we’re able to read his, and so many others writings today with a click of a button. It seems a shame not to take advantage of that wonderful opportunity. You can find all four books of the Institutes of the Christian Religion in audio, pdf download, and online here. The kindle version is only a dollar here, and a relatively cheap paperback can be purchased here. I hope this review was helpful, my friends, as always be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.