Muslims Can Not Be Saved According To Calvinist Theology

Posted: October 10, 2014 in Calvinism
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Dr. James Ach, and Dr. James A., PhD

It has always been tragic listening to Calvinists explain their evangelism while also maintaining that God saves only those whom He has predetermined to irresistibly choose Him after He regenerates them first and then monergistically causes their belief. This debate is not new, however. It was even one shared between famous Baptist evangelist William Carey and one of his pastors who told Carey that if God be pleased to convert the heathen he will do so without any of the means that Carey employed. It is still a fantastic conundrum how the Calvinist who believes that God has determined all things whatsoever come to pass, that any such persuasion or debate or manner of preaching has any real impact on a potential convert. Calvinists like Paul Washer, Phil Johnson, JD Hall, Tony Miano, et al, often complain about the altar calls and “manipulations” used by pastors to bring forth converts, but if that person isn’t elect, what difference does it make? Is the Calvinist conceding that somehow the preacher can interfere with God’s election by botching the method and message? What’s the point on criticizing how a preacher delivers his message if the person he is preaching at isn’t elect? Interesting though how Calvinists believe that God controls the means of salvation, just not the delivery of the preacher (who is part of the means process)!**

For the Calvinist who actually does attempt to evangelize, it is done out of duty, not compassion (Jude 22-24). Ask a Calvinist why they evangelize if they don’t know who the elect are and they will tell you, “because it’s commanded”. The reason for this kind of response is simple: you can’t really claim to love someone and consistently tell people that God doesn’t love everyone, and be an honest Calvinist. J.I. Packer claimed that “of course” he tells people God loves them even though he doesn’t really  believe that.  If you tell a sinner you love them, you could be lying to them if they are not elect. So duty compels the Calvinist, not compassion like Paul (Romans 9:1-3  Acts 20:31).

So far we have explained the conundrum (although not the most problematic) for the Calvinist who evangelizes when he does NOT know who the elect and nonelect are. But what about those whom they KNOW are not elect, like say, Muslims!

I’m going to show you a huge problem that Calvinists face if they are consistent with their view of God hating Esau in Romans chapter 9.

Muslims among the Arabs are the children of Edom.  I will even cite a Calvinist source to explain the history of Esau for our critics. You can also read the future of the nations of these people in Psalm 83. Calvinists use Romans 9:13 to prove that God hates the unelect because, as Rom 9 says, “Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated”. We have explained the proper interpretation of Romans 9 in our article on Not All Israel Are Of Israel? Calvinists don’t like hearing evangelistic Non Calvinists claim that God loves everybody. God is angry with the wicked all day long, and when He sends rain on the unjust, that’s just providential love, not the kind of unconditional love He shows to the elect. To prove this the Calvinist show you how God in fact, does eternally reprobate people because there it is in Romans 9: He hated Esau and loved Jacob.
Now here’s the problem with that, and why it proves that debaters like James White are either egotistical maniacs for bragging about how many moderated debates he’s had with Muslims, and that Calvinists who evangelize Muslims don’t believe their own theology, or they are just that ignorant of the Scriptures.
If the Calvinists actually stuck to their view of Romans 9:13 consistently, it would mean that God hates ALL of the offspring of Edom which makes up ALL of the Arabic Muslims. If Calvinists were consistent with Romans 9:13, then genetically, all of the children of Edom are cursed, eternally reprobated and can NEVER be saved.
I pointed this out to a person in a forum some time ago and he declared, “Well God was only talking about hating the brother of Jacob from the womb”. If true, then why did he just attempt to use it to prove the reprobation of anyone not deemed elect? If it only applies to Esau, then it can’t be used to prove the reprobation of anyone else. If it includes Esau’s children, then Calvinists can’t justify wasting time in which they are supposed to redeem properly (Eph 5:16) by witnessing to a group that their theology clearly demonstrates has  ZERO chances of ever getting saved because God hates them eternally if Reformed interpretations or Romans 9:13 are to be taken seriously and consistently. If a Calvinist is aware of this, and continues to debate Muslims, it can’t be because he believes there is a chance that they may be saved, but to inflate the ego. He can’t claim it’s out of duty because as stated above, this is not a situation in which he is unaware of who the elect and nonelect are because if his theology is true, then he at least knows that this particular group of people can never be saved.
Just one of the many, many inconsistencies within Calvinist/Reformed theology.
Another irony are the Calvinists who subscribe to Covenant Theology that think the current Jews living in Israel are not the proper inhabitants of the land of Israel, and that God has apparently given His land to a people that He has eternally hated instead!
**For a brief and brutal treatment of how the free will of the preacher destroys the Calvinist concept of monergism, see our article on Refuting Tony Miano’s Adoption Strawman, section on The Free Will Of the Preacher.
  1. Dee says:

    Dr. James, I read on your twitter account that Colin Maxwell wrote a “refutation” of this article ( I have read stuff by him before. Is his refutation on twitter, or did he give a private reply to you by email? I did an internet search and I cannot find where he wrote anything about this. I was curious to see what he said to you.

    I do not like Calvinism, and Mr. Maxwell once wrote an article trying to refute David Cloud on Calvinism as well, and he goes around the internet trying to defend Calvinism against “misrepresentation” frequently. If he could not answer this question, it would give me more assurance against Calvinism.

    I have found your articles on here against Calvinism to be some of the best I have ever read online (and I have read many). Unlike sticking to the moral and philosophical problems of Calvinism (which many websites do), your articles give Biblical reasons why Calvinism isn’t consistent — just like in this article above.

    Calvinists often complain that opponents fail to use the Bible in refuting Calvinism, but you have definitely done so here and elsewhere on your website. You have raised some good questions against both the behavior of mainstream Calvinists and even how they apply their Calvinistic lens across the entire Bible (not consistently). I think they will have a hard time answering your points.

  2. If God hated Esau (did not love him) then it is proof that God does not love everyone. Thus The Calvinist could point to scriptural proof that there are some (at least one) that God hated before they ad done anything. There is no reason that the verse has to mean all of Edom or all descendants of Esau unless that is what the Calvinist is claiming (which they are not). Thus your point is easily refuted and your logic is flawed.

    • drjamesa says:

      Gee, we’ve never heard THAT one before. Read our article on “Not All Israel Are Of Israel?” for how we dismantle this Calvinist butchering of Romans 9.

      Secondly, do you have any idea on how to determine the purpose and content of an article? So you want to stick with the God hates Esau and that proves He doesn’t love everyone; GREAT!…THAT ONLY HELPS US PROVE OUR CASE. If you believe that, then HELLO? WHY DO YOU KEEP WITNESSING TO ESAU’S CHILDREN WHEN YOU KNOW THEY CAN’T EVER BE SAVED??

      You say you “COULD” point to scriptural proof, but guess what…you didn’t. But listen to the logic of your claim. Stand in the mirror and repeat what you just said:

      1) God hates Esau proving he hates ALL NON ELECT
      2) But God really MIGHT love SOMEONE among the NON ELECT THAT HE SAID HE HATED

      Now is this starting to make sense to you? Are you seeing the blatant contradiction. YOu can’t use Romans 9 to prove that God hates everyone by ripping it out of it’s context. If you are going to apply the story of Esau TO INDIVIDUALS then you have to stay consistent in applying to ALL INDIVIDUALS FROM THAT LINE, and EVERY Arabic Muslim-NO EXCEPTIONS-is from that line. But of course, using the logic of Calvinists, not even those who are not Muslim, but merely Arabic descent, can’t be saved either.

      And pay attention on purpose this time. I never said that CALVINIST SAY Muslims can’t be saved. The point of the article is to show what the logical conclusion would be if Calvinist views of Romans 9 on Esau were to be taken seriously.

      • Stevie says:

        Because, nobody said his children can’t be saved. You have no idea the theology and beliefs behind Calvinism. You are taking the very basis of it and materializing things that do not exist in our beliefs. When someone who is actually Calvinist points out to you that we do not belief something, you insist you know what we believe more than we do. I have no desire to argue with you since it’s evident that you have no desire to even hear the truth of what we believe. You are more than satisfied staying in a place of hatred and spewing your untruthfulness. I hope, for your sake, that you will put your pride down long enough to see so many of the errors in your thinking and your actions. You write of a “Calvinist” belief that I, as a Calvinist, do not recognize. Therefor, you are not being truthful in your assessment. Those who read your blog deserve the truth. You sir, are not giving that in the slightest. I will not be back here and I cannot even stand to continue reading your false assessments and flat out lies.

      • James A, PhD says:

        Do you understand the difference between a stated premise and an implication? I never said that Calvinists SAY children can’t be saved (even though the article is about MUSLIMS): clearly, the article is what the IMPLICATIONS are if Calvinist theology is carried to its logical conclusion. This is a common tactic of brainwashed Calvinists; take the conclusion of a premise and accuse the opponent of claiming that we said you said that, and frankly, I’m sick of having to explain Logic 101 to Calvinists.

        Secondly, how can you presume to know what I know about Calvinism? How do you know I am not a former Calvinist? In fact, the guy who wrote this article, James Ach, was a former Calvinist in the Presbyterian church for 15 years, and I was a moderate Calvinist from 1990-2008. Not only am I a former Calvinist, I have an entire other forum dedicated to nothing but Calvinism where I have addressed all of the Calvinist objections and defenses.

        Thirdly, you claim “I don’t want to argue with you” which you support BY ARGUING WITH ME.

        Fourthly, you make blanket accusations with out a shred of evidence to support them. Simply saying, “you are not being truthful” is not an argument. It is merely ad hominem when unsupported by arguments, citations, and facts.

        And finally, your whining of “hatred” sounds more like the liberal rantings of safety-pin wearing Hillary Clinton supporters. I sincerely hope you don’t come back because Calvinists are actually the most hateful among professing believers which is precisely why so many blogs, books, and websites are dedicated to exposing their error.

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