Second, Zoe and I (and others) have on numerous occasions answered your objections. Once again, the point is that NO ONE KNOWS who the elect are or will be, Philip. And since no one knows who they are or will be, we are obligated to preach the Gospel to ALL. It is really as simple as that.
Byb, no offense, but no you haven't. 1st, as I will show, in the context of Calvin election and predestination, you have not shown we are OBLIGATED to preach to all. You and I agree that we are obligated to preach to all, but that is not the issue. The issue, is under the doctrines of Calvinism, are we obligated, and is the Gospel message truly universal. That you have not shown. And in fact calling it an obligation, as I will show later, would be a logical contradiction.
2nd. We do, in general terms absolutely know who the elect are and will be.
The elect are those who trust Christ.
The elect will be those who trust Christ.
That's not the issue Philip has, And I, like Philip, am perplexed that yourself and Zoe seem to miss the gist of what we are saying.
If Calvin election is true, then why the Gospel message. Why is it universal? Why would God ask us to preach something that is IMPOSSIBLE for some to believe? And if they did believe, it still couldn't save them. (of course I am working withing the context of Calvinsm's terms of elect and reprobate.)
Is this a fair representation of the Gospel? "Jesus died to save you from your sins." (1 Cor. 15:3)
that is a fair representation of the Gospel, holding to Calvin election, we are preaching a lie to many if not most. Because, under Calvin election Jesus most certainly did NOT die to save many if not most the people (reprobate) who hear this message. So, if the reprobate rejects the gospel, he is doing exactly what has been determined for him to do. And thus, we should applaud their rejection of it. They are fulfilling everthing they were predestined to do. There is no more reason to rejoice over salvation than damnation. In the Calvin view, God's soveriegn will is done.
Under Calvin election, If you preach this Gospel to all, you are either lying, being disengenous, or asking many to believe a lie. The lie being that Jesus died for them. (The reprobate) If Jesus did not die for the reprobate, then each time they hear the gospel, they are being told something that is NOT true. That Jesus died for THEIR sins. When in fact, under the Calvin view of election he did NOT die for their (the reprobate) sins. So, presenting the Gospel to them is asking them to believe a lie. And, if the Gospel is presented universally, it is being presented to the reprobate.
Furthermore, under Calvinism, regeneration happens apart from any
volitional participation from the believer or other influence. Therefore, preaching the Gospel is nothing more than a formality. A person presenting the Gospel can not add to or faciliatate regeneration in any way. It offers no one salvation. Salvation is not offered. Either a person's will has nothing to do with it or not. That applies to the believer or any 3rd party/parties. And therefore there is no need to preach the Gospel. Because if a believer has an obligation
(Your word) then there is personal responsibility
involved in some facet, whether justication or other.
So, since Calvinism is the topic, how do you reconcile an OBLIGATION to preach the Gospel? What if an elect does not preach the gospel? As we know, people fail at this all the time. Is preaching the gospel a requirement for salvation? If so, then there is a condition on salvation, and that won't fit with Calvinism. If there is an obligaiton to preach the Gospel so someone can hear it, then there is also a condition beyond the finished work of Christ. Sorry Byb, but that creates more problems. The issue is the Calvin doctrines of election and predestination. You have to be consistent within that framework, and follow it to its logical ends. So how can you say preaching the Gospel to all is consistent with 5-point Calvinism. And further, how can you say there is an obligation?
We don't believe you are a 5-point Calvinist, but that is NOT the issue at hand. You are defending the tenets of 5-point calvinism. You say,
And since no one knows who they are or will be, we are obligated to preach the Gospel to ALL. It is really as simple as that.
No, it isn't that simple, for reasons shown above. That does NOT comply to the Calvin doctrines. One is either forced to amend the Gospel, distort the Gospel, or admit that evangelism is NOT an obligation, and that the Gospel is NOT universal.
-“The Bible treated allegorically becomes putty in the hands of the exegete.” John Walvoord
"I'm not saying scientists don't overstate their results. They do. And it's understandable, too...If you spend years working toward a certain goal and make no progress, of course you are going to spin your results in a positive light." Ivellious