Christian Education (Teen/ Young Adult Problem) Sunday school
As a recently appointed pastor at a local Nazarene church in a small rural community I was given a couple of letters in private from fellow member Christians that were concerned about the new Teen/ Young Adult Sunday school teacher. I opened the letters and read the questions: How do you handle a situation in which Calvinist beliefs are being introduced and taught in my Sunday school class by my Sunday school teacher?
I let the concerned members now that I will talk to the Sunday school teacher personally. And to the question is Calvinism scriptural?
According to the Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance Calvinism (also known as the Reformed Faith) is a branch of Christianity mostly shaped by John Calvin in the 16th century. This alternative approach to the Christian faith is founded on the Five Points of Calvinism. ( Robinson)
Then I explained to t hem that Bible-reading Christians are starting to see Calvinist and other non-scriptural beliefs infiltrate their churches today. But is Calvinism scripturally based? To know this, we must refer to the Bible at each of the 5 points of Calvinism to find appropriate scriptures to back it up and then see if it logically fits in with the message of the Bible. According to the book Christian Education: “1. Biblical and theological soundness are important to assure what is taught in the curriculum is genuine Christianity.”(Clark)
I confronted the Sunday school teacher with the written letters and concerns as stated in the 2009-2013 Nazarene manual.
I brought their attention to page 228 Section 505.1 and I quote” If a member of the clergy is accused of misconduct unbecoming a minister, or teaching doctrines out of harmony with the doctrinal statement of the Church of the Nazarene, or of serious laxity in the enforcement of the Covenant of Christian Character or the Covenant of Christian Conduct of the church, accusations shall be placed in writings and shall be signed by at least two members of the Church of the Nazarene who are at that time in good standing.” (Blevins)
As true believers in the Holiness movement we know that we can never teach something that isn’t scriptural do to the fact that we are doubly responsible and accountable for our actions by God. So, even if I firmly believe something with all my heart I couldn’t teach it to my family or other Christians as truth if there is no scripture in the Bible to back it up. I may think it makes sense, and I may really believe it, but as a pastor and a Christian, the burden of proof from the scriptures is on ME before I open my mouth and talk about it.
The first point of Calvinism already is unscriptural: “Total depravity”, which people are not naturally inclined to love and serve God, but must be forced to.( Robinson) We know this is not scriptural, because man was made in God’s image, and God is love and we were all given free will to choose to love him or not. Even though we fell into sin and now born into it, sin can’t change the foundation of what God designed and created us to be: loving, praising, worshiping beings.
It is Satan and his lies and deceit that make us think we are different from God when we are out in his wicked world. It is his deception that puts us apart from God in the first place. And, while this is a bold statement that many might not agree with, I feel that the beliefs Calvinism/ non-scriptural beliefs are is not only unscriptural, but a demonic lie from the most ultimate deceiver meant to confuse us and keep us away from God’s truth. If something is contrary to the Bible, it cannot be from God, and must not be taught in our Sunday schools. Remember, the Bible foretells of the false prophets that will try to twist the word and confuse believers and condemn all non-believers. The teachings of non-scriptural material will cease and that the reports will be brought up to the Sunday...