As Iron Sharpens Iron

An ongoing and online discussion between: an Orthodox informed Ecumaniac without a denominational home, an ordained Baptist youth pastor with an open mind, a Calvinist worship leader/seminarian with a staggering vocabulary and ability to make a point, and a cradle Catholic with a love/hate relationship to Rome.

Monday, January 31, 2005

Calvinism vs. Orthodoxy

I would like to think that we are saying the same thing, and in some sense I think we are, but there is a serious rift in the perception of Original Sin in the west and in the East. You say:

What we inherit from Adam is death, both physical and spiritual, and a propensity toward sin. That is what I think the "sin nature" is. Do we HAVE to sin? No, Jesus never did, and He was fully human. Will we sin? Yes, we will all sin, and in fact, in God's eyes, have all sinned.


First, do you think that Jesus "inherited" original sin? Is that part of being entirely human? And if he did, how was he, as Westernly conceived, the pure sacrifice?

Second, Calvinism maintains that not only are we corrupted and broken, but "so corrupted is the 'damned mass' of the human race that its members no longer have the power to avoid sin." We have no choice in the matter. Further, when God gives his grace, we have no choice but to accept it. Total Depravity, as Calvin concieved it, logically leads to double-predestination. I think we would both agree that is an abomination darn close to, if not entirely, heretical.

The difference is our positions is, I think, in emPHAsis. Let me ask you this, before I continue. What is Original Sin?

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