Mar 20, 2017
My podcast thingy broke and the first, violence-laden,
conversation about Calvinism disappeared from existence.
First, though, what is up with the Big Mac? Good grief,
Dave Pendleton graciously agreed to repeat the conversation
and so we armed ourselves for battle and plunged into the debate.
So, Calvinism...what is it? Is it right? Am I really using the word
as an insult? Dave thinks I'm unfairly portraying the views so I
give him a chance to set me straight. We try to remember the
TULIP for Calvinism and end up needing to Google it. Sad. David is
not a 'hard' Calvinist. I'm not a 'hard' Armenian. Neither of
us have had enough coffee to even have this discussion but we do it
anyway. There are a lot of really great thinkers who can make
a case for Calvinism and none of them are on this
Do we take some credit for salvation? David says, "yes". I
says, "no". We break beer bottles and slash at each other with the
Do we have free will? David says 'sort of'. I say 'yep'. We
hack each other with machetes.
I give my excellent illustration for how Jesus is like
Chik-fil-a. I say it's a great illustration but Dave still
doesn't immediately renounce Calvinism. So...that's a little
disappointing. My friend is annoyed that people want to take
"credit" for salvation. I shoot him with a spear gun.
We wonder why God bothered giving us brains if we aren't
supposed to use them. Ultimately, there is no disagreement between
us. So we go at each other with ball bats because we're still
pretty worked up from before.
Maybe we can't take credit for anything. What is
'motivation' if there's no free will? Sort of a license to
take Sunday off and quit trying to teach Christians stuff. This is
good news for people who like naps! Dave swings a pool cue at
me. I lay out an explanation of what I call "Theological
Determinism". Then I push Dave into a barrel of sulfuric
We mention R.C. Sproul a few times and wish he had been
available to talk to us. Sent me Sproul's cell number and I'll give
him a jingle for next time. Nobody has perfect theology so maybe we
should just give up the conversation. But instead, we shock each
other with cattle prods.
Maybe we should strive for a combination of intellect and
intuition. Maybe not. I think there's value in thinking. Dave
agrees. Then, pistols at 20 paces.
Religion and science are not at odds. We need them both. And
there are elements of truth in both. Our understanding of both is
lacking. Dave quotes the book of Romans. I respond with a karate
chop to his throat.
David brings up a great point about Abraham and Isaac. For the
first time in the conversation, there is no bloodletting.
So we talk briefly about 'The Shack' and that leads to
punching each other with brass knuckled fists. In the midst, we are
critical of people who are critical of us.
Tim Keller's book Reason for God enters the conversation. We
finally agree that we like that book. Then we discuss David's
upcoming tour and how you, Carl, are anxiously awaiting this
podcast so you'll have all your answers about Calvinism