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Posts Tagged ‘Robert Picirilli

Five Favorite Living Arminians and Calvinists (2013)

Had an e-mail this week ask me to name my five favorite Arminians and Calvinists and why.  So here is a brief top five along with short reasons why.

Top Five Arminians

1.  Dr. Vic Reasoner.  I enjoy his commentaries on Romans and Revelation as well as his other works.  He is an expository preacher, President of the Southern Methodist College, and a very skilled writer.

2.  Dr. Robert Picirilli.  His book, Grace, Faith, Free Willis simply a good book.  I have read it nearly three times.  He also advocates expository preaching.  I do differ with him over the KJV as he believes that the KJV is the best English translation though he is not KJV only.

3.  Dr. Roger Olson.  While I don’t agree with Dr. Olson on all issues (see inerrancy), I do enjoy his books especially his book, Arminian Theology: Myths and Realities.  

4.  Dr. Jack Cottrell.  While Dr. Cottrell is part of the Restoration Movement, he does consider himself an Arminian.  His books, especially his commentary on Romans and his trilogy on the doctrine of God, are classics.  Dr. Cottrell will make you think and he always takes theological issues and wrestles with the Scriptures for the final say.

5.  Dr. Michael Brown.  One of the best Christian apologists and a good debater.  He and his friend Dr. James White often aim at each other yet Dr. Brown remains a godly man through it all.  I met Dr. Brown back in the 1990’s and he was a man with a fire for Jesus.  His preaching is a call to holiness.  His book, Go and Sin No More! is a great read.

Top Five Calvinists

1.  Dr. John MacArthur.  I truly enjoy Johnny Mac.  I had the honor of meeting him and found him to be a godly, warm man.  His writings are full of Scripture and I love his passion for expository preaching.  His book, The Gospel According to Jesus, is a must read for all disciples.

2.  Matt Chandler.  I enjoy Matt’s preaching style.  He is not a deep expositor like MacArthur above but he does teach the Word faithfully and calls people to radically follow Jesus.  His book, The Explicit Gospelis a must read.

3.  Paul Washer.  This brother burns with a passion for Jesus.  Paul describes himself as a “Spurgeonite” when asked what he believes.  I love his zeal for the lost, his hunger for holiness, and his preaching of repentance.

4.  Dr. Gary DeMar.  DeMar use to have a 2 hour podcast that I would download and listen to in my truck.  I first downloaded it to disagree with him but more and more he opened my eyes to many things.  While I don’t always agree with Gary, he is an excellent thinker and writer.  His book, Last Days Madness, is a good read.

5.  Dr. Richard Mayhue.  Some may not know who this is.  Dr. Mayhue is one of John MacArthur’s right hand men.  He is a good Bible teacher, a deep thinker, and signed a book for me once.  His book, The Healing Promise, is a good read.

Grace, Faith, Free Will

I want to announce the good news that Robert Picirilli’s book Grace, Faith, Free Will is now available for Kindle.  It is great read and I have always enjoyed this book and refer to it often.  Dr. Picirilli remains one of my top Arminian theologians.  He seeks to be faithful to the Word of God, is gracious in his replies to Calvinists, and is a solid Arminian.

I also hear some good news that an Arminian brother is writing a new commentary on the book of Ephesians.  I will not say more now out of respect for my brother while he labors.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

12/03/2012 at 11:26 AM

Robert Picirilli’s Short Outline of Romans 9-11

One of my favorite Arminian theologians is Dr. Robert Picirilli.  His book, Grace, Faith, Free Will is a solid Arminian book that deals with the issues of salvation and the contrast between Arminianism and Calvinism.  It is a well thought out book and I have enjoyed it over the years.

Let me borrow from Dr. Picirilli’s book and his brief outline that he gives for Romans 9-11 (pp. 71-72).  The outline helps us to see Paul’s thinking regarding the Jews and the sovereign choice of God in choosing to save the Gentiles in Christ Jesus.

Dr. Picirilli regards Romans 9:14 as the key to the passage.  Romans 9:14 says, “What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God?  Certainly not!” (NKJV).  Paul’s point in Romans 9-11 is to show that the answer is no!  God has not failed in His promises to Israel nor is He unjust in rejecting Israel because of their lack of faith.

So Paul’s main point: God is not unrighteous in His present rejection of Israel.

Sub-points in developing this main point:

A.  God elects and rejects whom He pleases (Romans 9-10)
1.  He never promised, unconditionally, to save all the fleshly descendants of Abraham, Isaac, or Israel (9:6-13).
2.  He is Sovereign and has the right to save (or damn) whomever He pleases (9:15-24).
3.  He always made clear (in prophecy) that not all of “Israel” would be saved (9:25-29).
4.  He has rejected Israel because Israel has rejected salvation by faith in favor of salvation by works (9:30-10:21).

B.  God has not rejected Israel after all (Romans 11)
1.  In fact, God has not rejected Israelites: any who will can be saved by grace through faith (11:1-10).
2.  The present rejection of Israel opens the door of salvation for all nations (11:11-22).
3.  Indeed, the present rejection of Israel is not “final”: Israel will yet be converted (11:23-32).

One point that Dr. Picirilli makes that I found comforting was that God desires to show mercy (Romans 9:18).  If we can show that His mercy is extended on the basis of faith in His Son then we can likewise conclude that His damnation is based on the rejection of His mercy.  It would not follow that if Paul is establishing conditional salvation upon faith in Jesus (Romans 10:13) then he would not conclude that God would predestined the reprobate.  His desire is to show His grace and mercy to all (Romans 11:32; 2 Peter 3:9) and to save all who come to Him in faith (John 6:37; Acts 13:38-39; 1 Timothy 2:3-6).

Written by The Seeking Disciple

08/20/2012 at 2:25 PM

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