Calvinist Bad Logic #9 and #10: "Causes To Work" and Negative Inferences
Bad Logic #9: Calvinists love to change "God causes all things to work together for good" to "God causes all things." Big difference! To work all things together means to take whatever happens and turn it into good and work it into His plans.
When I looked up "works" in the concordance online, I see that it means "to be active, efficient." To be active in working things together. To be efficient in using circumstances for good. NOT "determining or causing what happens."
Why would God need to "work all things together for good" if He “causes all things to be just the way He wanted/planned” to begin with?
And it's changing the meaning of the verse. And this has huge implications when it comes to who we think is responsible for sin and when it comes to our view of God's character and our responsibilities.
Bad Logic #10: Calvinism also tricks and traps people with "negative inferences" about what a verse says. (Kevin from Beyond the Fundamentals goes over this. See "Calvinist Tactics Exposed" - a must watch video! - for an excellent look at how Calvinists go wrong and how they mislead people.)
Calvinists read a verse like (hypothetical example) "God loves those who obey." And then they make a negative inference, inferring that the opposite must also be true, that if God says He loves the obedient then it MUST MEAN He doesn't love the disobedient.
They read a verse that says something like (hypothetical example) "Jesus came to save those who believe," and then they assume it MUST MEAN that Jesus ONLY came to save believers. And since they define believers as "the elect," those predestined by Calvi-god for salvation, they say that Jesus came to save only the elect and that salvation isn't available to anyone else. Calvi-Jesus died only for the elect.
But is that what the verse says? If I tell you that I went to the store and bought carrots does that necessarily mean that I ONLY bought carrots? That I didn't also buy potatoes? Does saying "I love chocolate ice cream" necessarily mean that I hate vanilla ice cream?
But Calvinists assume certain things MUST BE true based on what they think the verse is implying about something it doesn't say. And this is a dangerous way to formulate your theology.
(And can you see how easy it is to manipulate people about what verses are saying? Sometimes all they have to do is tell you how they read it and then - abracadabra - suddenly you see it that way too, even though you never read it that way before.)
When Calvinists tell you what a verse means, you always have to ask yourself "Is that what the verse is really, clearly saying? Or is it an inference?"
(For all the posts in this series, see the "Intro ..." Or look for "'Calvinist Bad Logic' Series" in the labels on the side-bar. Or find the whole series in one post, "When Calvinism's 'Bad Logic ' Traps Good Christians.")