If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and be filled,” and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that?
This strikes at the heart of the Calvinist argument to maintain some form of omni-benevolence (i.e. God loves everyone, at least in the minor sense of Common Grace, such as giving rain), despite a condition of Preterition, which essentially holds that God chose some that He wanted to save (i.e. the upper caste, Calvinism’s elect, the narrow path), in contrast to the vast majority of others (i.e. wide road to destruction), whom He did not have such an interest in saving (i.e. the non-elect caste, who do not receive the same alleged Irresistible Grace as administered to those of the upper caste), being left out of the merciful will of God. So the question is, if all of that is true, is it reasonable to say that God loves the non-elect in any meaningful sense, and is such a contention ultimately rebutted by James 2:15-16?
1st John 3:17: “But whoever has the world’s goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?”
Question: What does this mean in relation to Calvinism?
Answer: If God “sees” the need of the alleged non-elect caste, and yet “closes” His heart against them (and even wills to damn them), before they were even born, does this meet God’s standards in terms of the “love of God”? See also Luke 10:30-37.
1st Timothy 5:8: “But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.”
Question: When considering that everyone is a child of God by
creation (Acts 17:29), does the love of God, as defined by these
passages, line up with the love of God, as defined by Calvinism?
In other words, what good would it be, or what love would it be,
if God said to the lost, “Believe in Me” (John 12:44), if He does
not also give what is “necessary” (James 2:16) to actually do
Answer: If there was a sense in which everyone was a child of
God, which there is, and if God told them to believe in Him for
salvation, yet while withholding the means to do so, then by
God’s own definition, it would make Him “worse than an
Dave Hunt writes, concerning how Calvinism ultimately portrays God: “He pretends to be sincere for repentance, while withholding the very grace men need to repent, having foreordained that man can’t and won’t repent without sovereign regeneration. Calvinism mocks God, His Word, and man himself!” (Debating Calvinism, p.314)
Moreover, Jeremiah 18:1-13 shows us that it is not a matter of God not providing for man, but of man rejecting what God has provided.
Calvinist, George Whitefield: “And so it is, but not his saving mercy. God is loving to every man: he sends his rain upon the evil and upon the good.” (A Letter from George Whitefield to the Rev. Mr. John Wesley, emphasis mine)
Question: But how does physical “rain” compare with a far greater spiritual need?
Answer: Actually, the one gives evidence of the other. In other words, if God is so concerned about meeting their physical needs, surely He is concerned with their spiritual needs as well, and the only thing standing in the way of their salvation is their own stubborn will to refuse Him, and not some secret desire on God’s part wishing ill of them.
George Whitefield: “I believe the doctrine of reprobation, in this view, that God intends to give saving grace, through Jesus Christ, only to a certain number, and that the rest of mankind, after the fall of Adam, being justly left of God to continue in sin, will at last suffer that eternal death which is its proper wages.” (A Letter from George Whitefield to the Rev. Mr. John Wesley, emphasis mine)
John Calvin: “When God prefers some to others, choosing some and passing others by, the difference does not depend on human dignity or indignity. It is therefore wrong to say that the reprobate are worthy of eternal destruction.” (Concerning the Eternal Predestination of God, pp.120-121, emphasis mine)
John Calvin: “But since his purpose is to show how much more powerful in the faithful is the grace of Christ than the curse contracted in Adam, what is there here to shake the election of those whom Christ restores to life, leaving the others to perish?” (Concerning the Eternal Predestination of God, p.152, emphasis mine)
Calvinist, Alan Kurschner: “God desires that his sheep are saved. God desires that his people are saved. He does not desire that every single individual who has ever lived, live in glory with him forever. If that were the case, we have an incompetent, unhappy, and impotent God.” (The Calvinist Gadfly, emphasis mine)
God has a high set of personal standards which Calvinism does not necessarily take into consideration.