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fullmetalheart

ATI vs VF, or, Calvinism vs Baptist

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fullmetalheart

Awhile back, I mentioned making a thread about ATI beliefs vs VF beliefs. I know it's been a few weeks and I'm sorry - I got swamped with my final paper for my class (which I got a B in!), I got seriously ill, my doctor changed my anti depressant and I'm still adjusting, etc. I'm now able to make the post and point out some of the theological differences. Again, I am so sorry it took so long.

 

ATI is Calvinist in belief. To put it simply, here are some basics on Calvinism. I'm pretty well-versed in it, as a common debate at my old school was Calvinism vs Arminianism. Calvin can best be summed up in the "Calvin's Tulip". There is much more to it, of course (which I can expand on if people have questions) but it gives it a simple summary.

 

 

Total Depravity (also known as Total Inability and Original Sin)

Unconditional Election

Limited Atonement (also known as Particular Atonement)

Irresistible Grace

Perseverance of the Saints (also known as Once Saved Always Saved)

(http://www.calvinistcorner.com/tulip.htm)

 

So, these are the basics of Calvinism. You can also read more here:

http://www.thecaveonline.com/APEH/calvinTULIP.html

 

Which explains it far better than I could in my slightly groggy, drug-changing state.

 

VF, on the other hand, is Baptist. Which, here is a link:

http://www.wordmp3.com/files/gs/einwechter.htm

 

So, how are they the same? How do they differ? Glad you asked! These links sum it up well!

http://www.baptistpillar.com/article_166.html

http://www.biblebelievers.net/calvinism/kjcalvn1.htm

 

I apologize for the massive amount of links, but I figured I should cite my sources. And anyone who wants to read more about how Calvinism and Baptism differ and are similar. I can answer questions or provide more links if anyone wants more reading than the massive amount here, but, I hope this helps answer some questions!

Edited by OnceUponATime
adding tags

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singsingsing

Aren't a lot of Baptists Calvinists, though? I just know that I searched in vain for a non-reformed Baptist church in my city and could not find a single one.

Thanks for the post, btw!

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yetanothermeg

ok, I thought it was the opposite. I thought VF was Calvinist (lots of reformed Presbyterians and the like), also not celebrating Christmas. I thought ATI was Baptist, since the Duggars were attending a Baptist church when they got into it, the Bates family attends a Baptist church and I think Anna Duggar's dad was sponsored in a prison ministry by a Baptist Church.

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NotALoserLikeYou

I've read so much about it but it still confuses me. The Duggars are baptist but follow ATI. Calvinists believe Jesus died for the elect, who are predetermined. Andpthat babies go to hell. That doesn't seem to line up with the Duggars beliefs because they definitely try to "save" people. Wait, I thought for sure the VF people were "reformed" aka Calvinist?? The tool is definitely a Calvinist, no?

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Meh
Coconut Flan

All the ATI people I've met were Baptists. Could it be they take both types as long as they are suitably protected homeschoolers, anti-TV, etc.

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dramallama

VF is definitely Calvinist, and Baptists can be Calvinist. I know I've read some articles about an attempted Calvinist takeover of the SBC, anyway.

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EmiGirl

The opposite of Calvinist is Armenian, not Baptist. Most of the major Baptist Theological Seminaries these days are teaching Calvinism.

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fullmetalheart

Sorry! I switched them in my tiredness. Should have proofread closer. ;)

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singsingsing
The opposite of Calvinist is Armenian, not Baptist. Most of the major Baptist Theological Seminaries these days are teaching Calvinism.

*Arminian, actually, not to be confused with the people of Armenia. :)

VF is definitely Calvinist. Not sure if ATI is officially Baptist, but it does seem like it. I'd love to know if ATI is Arminian or Reformed. The theological differences between reformed and arminian belief systems are pretty extreme and would definitely be deal breakers for a lot of these people. I thought Kelly Bates said they didn't get involved in VF because VF was too reformed in their doctrine, but I could be remembering wrong. Makes Jessa's courtship with a VF guy more interesting, anyway.

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Meh
Coconut Flan

I have doubts that Jim Bob ever gets into deep theological discussions or debates. I have no confidence he'd even know what we were talking about if someone mentioned arminian.

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uber frau

I think it's safest to call ATI not Calvinist. Most hardcore Calvinists would label most Baptists 'Arminian' (even though they aren't), since most Baptists believe in some degree of Free Will, something the Calvinists very much reject. Many of Gothard's definitions of basic theological concepts (such as 'grace') differ substantially from the orthodox Calvinist ones, and while I'm sure there are ATI families who are Calvinist, I think it's probably not that common. Conservative Calvinists are very hung up on being doctrinally 'correct' and are force fed Calvinist doctrine from a young age, so it's not like they wouldn't notice. (The Botkinettes pretending to be braniacs mentioning supra vs infralapsarianism doesn't impress very much when my fundy school covered the debate in 6th grade.).

Reformed Baptists are simply Calvinists who differ on the point of baptism. In general, Calvinists subscribe to some sort of belief in infant baptism, and sprinkling is considered just fine. Reformed Baptists believe in adult baptism (or at least, baptiaing ppl who are old enough to make a choice), I believe full dunking is the preferred method.

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NotALoserLikeYou

So what denominations are Calvinist?

wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Reformed_denominations

"Baptist" seems like a very broad term as beliefs and practices vary.

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Cleopatra7

ATI always struck me as being somewhat in the Holiness tradition, where it is believed that by adhering to a strict lifestyle, you can achieve personal holiness. If this is true, that would make ATI Arminian. The ATI families on the show don't strike me as very intellectual, so they probably just say they're Baptist because that's the denomination that most common where they live and probably the denomination the adults initially grew up in. As others have said, there are Reformed Baptists, and based on what I've read at Wartburg Watch, there's a not so secret attempt to engineer a Calvinist coup at the SBC.

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apple1
ATI always struck me as being somewhat in the Holiness tradition, where it is believed that by adhering to a strict lifestyle, you can achieve personal holiness. If this is true, that would make ATI Arminian. The ATI families on the show don't strike me as very intellectual, so they probably just say they're Baptist because that's the denomination that most common where they live and probably the denomination the adults initially grew up in. As others have said, there are Reformed Baptists, and based on what I've read at Wartburg Watch, there's a not so secret attempt to engineer a Calvinist coup at the SBC.

Also, Gothard is very big on the teaching of "Rhema" or special revelation received from God. There are a number of things Gothard teaches that he claims were Rhemas that he received. I'm a little fuzzy on the idea that his followers can also receive Rhemas; what if their Rhemas contradict Gothard's Rhemas? The Rhema teaching sounds more like Holiness belief. But it is true that many Gothard followers claim to be Baptist, and the Gothardites that I knew personally attended Baptist churches.

I have thought for quite some time that the Calvinism vs. Arminian debate will eventually split the SBC.

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uber frau

I think many ATI families come from an IFB background. Most Calvinists would label IFBs 'Arminian' and most IFBs would run screaming from Calvinists. But then IFBs run screaming and foaming at the mouth from a lot of things. I think that's what makes them IFB. They're a bit like the Tea Party of Protestantism. They're not really anything, just protesting what they don't like.

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AnnieC 305

I agree that they are both variants of Reformed Baptist.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reformed_Baptists

And that they hold with the tenants of the Evangelical Tribe

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/slacktivis ... cal-tribe/

And perhaps most importantly they hold similar views on the big things in daily live, the roles of women and men, the obedience of children, the emphasis on homeschooling, the importance of modesty, of courtship, of extreme chastity, the Quiverfull desire to have large families, and all the other things we snark about. As well as subscribing to Tea Party politics.

That's why I think you can lump them all together, and that you won't find some mass exodus from "Vision Forum" because of what The Tool has done. Formal points of theology aside they're all the same kind of church and your average family can go between them without seeing any difference or feeling any discomfort.

In fact, as they steeplejack more churches and ministries this thing will continue to grow. I think it all traces back to Rushdoony, as a source, if you really look at it, but my supporting links are not currently in order, I admit. I still think that if we really started counting heads this movement would be a lot bigger than even we realize.

Not breaking links because Wikipedia and a supporter.

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lilah

I recall that someone pointed out razing ruth espoused both ati/vision forum beleifs and while on the surface they seem identical theologically they were qute different

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EmiGirl

*Arminian, actually, not to be confused with the people of Armenia. :)

VF is definitely Calvinist. Not sure if ATI is officially Baptist, but it does seem like it. I'd love to know if ATI is Arminian or Reformed. The theological differences between reformed and arminian belief systems are pretty extreme and would definitely be deal breakers for a lot of these people. I thought Kelly Bates said they didn't get involved in VF because VF was too reformed in their doctrine, but I could be remembering wrong. Makes Jessa's courtship with a VF guy more interesting, anyway.

Sorry. That's what happens when i post while under the influence of Benedryl (and therefore about 3/4 asleep). My mind shuts down completely.

As someone in a Southern Baptist church, I also believe that Calvinism vs. Arminianism will split the SBC. Although these days it's mostly up to the individual churches to decide things like that. The last I heard there were 2 or 3 SBC churches who have women pastors now!

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debrand

Just as an interesting aside(at least interesting to me) Calvinists seem to frame all debates with non Calvinists as Calvinism vs. Arminian; however, it isn't that simple. I think that the Calvinist/Arminian divide is a way for Calvinists to mentally create groups of us and them without having to really examine someone else's believes.

Ray Comfort and Westboro Baptist Church are Calvinists. Although to be fair, I have been told that Phelps is a hyperCalvinists. I think that the guy who started the Creationist Museum is Calvinist also.

I don't like debating Calvnists online,not because of their deep intelligence,but because they seem to have a tendency to argue in circles and use strawmen.

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singsingsing

Sorry. That's what happens when i post while under the influence of Benedryl (and therefore about 3/4 asleep). My mind shuts down completely.

No need to apologize, I know well the evil effects of benadryl. If I were on benadryl trying to post what you did, it would probably come out something like, "The opposite of calvin and hobbes is elephants ahaha because no one knows my pain, my pain people, why are seminaries teaching rabbits. why."

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dramallama
Just as an interesting aside(at least interesting to me) Calvinists seem to frame all debates with non Calvinists as Calvinism vs. Arminian; however, it isn't that simple. I think that the Calvinist/Arminian divide is a way for Calvinists to mentally create groups of us and them without having to really examine someone else's believes.

Ray Comfort and Westboro Baptist Church are Calvinists. Although to be fair, I have been told that Phelps is a hyperCalvinists. I think that the guy who started the Creationist Museum is Calvinist also.

I don't like debating Calvnists online,not because of their deep intelligence,but because they seem to have a tendency to argue in circles and use strawmen.

I've found them to be thoroughly convinced of their own intellectual superiority. I guess if you believe you're so special that God chose you while damning the rest of us to hell even before we were ever born, that breeds a certain level of intolerable smugness in some people.

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Waffle Time
Hane
Just as an interesting aside(at least interesting to me) Calvinists seem to frame all debates with non Calvinists as Calvinism vs. Arminian; however, it isn't that simple. I think that the Calvinist/Arminian divide is a way for Calvinists to mentally create groups of us and them without having to really examine someone else's believes.

Ray Comfort and Westboro Baptist Church are Calvinists. Although to be fair, I have been told that Phelps is a hyperCalvinists. I think that the guy who started the Creationist Museum is Calvinist also.

I don't like debating Calvnists online,not because of their deep intelligence,but because they seem to have a tendency to argue in circles and use strawmen.

Even in my days as a dedicated (but open-minded) Catholic--my parents were raised in different faiths--I had very little patience with this type of theological hair-splitting. If you believe in a God who truly loves you and knows the depths of your soul, wouldn't s/he understand you well enough to "get where you're coming from"?

This boils down to my current (perhaps simple-minded) credo: "My God is smarter than your God, fundies."

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lauraloralara

This is somewhat off-topic but hopefully on-topic enough not to be terribly annoying: I'm really interested in learning about the theological and historical differences between various sects of Protestant Christianity, but I don't have any idea where to start. You guys all seem to be fairly well-versed in these areas - any suggestions on books or websites for someone who's just beginning to get her feet wet in learning about Protestantism? (If it helps, I'm a grad student at an R1 university, so even if you recommend fairly specialized books, articles, etc. I should be able to track them down in the library.)

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NotALoserLikeYou

So to clarify, if Ray Comfort is a Calvinist then he believes he is preaching at people who have not yet found Jesus but if they are of the elect, they will hear the message and be saved. Those who never get saved were never meant to be. Do I have this right?

This goes against everything I was taught as a Christian and seems to go against many biblical verses.

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