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Piper: Should Arminians Be Allowed to Teach?

March 4, 2008

The ancient Arminian/Calvinist hornet’s nest has been stirred. In his Resurgence address, Piper commented:

Here’s my rule of thumb: the more responsible a person is to shape the thoughts of others about God, the less Arminianism should be tolerated. Therefore church members should not be excommunicated for this view but elders and pastors and seminary and college teachers should be expected to hold the more fully biblical view of grace.

Piper clarifies in a follow up blog post:

What is not precise here is the implication of the word “should.” “The less Arminianism should be tolerated.” By way of clarification, I would say: In an Arminian institution, Arminians should be allowed to teach. But in institutions that regard Arminianism as defective view of God’s grace, they should not be allowed to teach. Or, more broadly, in an institution that thinks the truth is better served by having advocates of Arminianism and Calvinism, both should be allowed to teach.

Read the rest.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. March 4, 2008 12:43 pm

    Glad to know I am not tolerated :) I read the original link, and agree that within its own tradition, it gets muddy when you are mixing theological opinions.

    The problem is that the best person to teach the opposing view is someone who holds it in its best form. I have yet to hear an Arminian adequately explain the best points of Calvinism; and vice versa. I think this is an issue that does more to divide than unite in the church.

    As Wesley would say, “If your heart is like my heart then lend me your hand.”

  2. March 4, 2008 3:29 pm

    Amen Eric. I have defended the Calvinist view thought I myself am Arminian. I think Piper is a great guy and love his stuff but he needs to back off this horse and concentrate on grace if that is what he is asking for!

    Good Thoughts

  3. March 4, 2008 6:51 pm

    eric, I think what is important here is that he is not looking someone to adequately explain the opposing view. He wants to make sure us defects don’t teach his people.

  4. Luke permalink
    March 5, 2008 1:42 am

    How generous of Piper to say that Arminians should be allowed to teach at Arminian institutions. Had we not had that clarification, we would have thought he had embarassed himself. Oh wait….we still think that.

    For the record, I do not think that Piper should be allowed to teach anywhere. That is, unless he is allowed to teach anywhere.

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