George Bryson’s Response to me

George Bryson responded to my commentary on his email to Calvary Chapel Pastors.  His initial comment stated that I had misrepresented him so I told him if he can show me how I misrepresented him I would post the entirety of his letter.

BRYSON’S RESPONSE

For starters I sent the email out to only a fraction of the Calvary Chapel pastors. Though you have given me an idea to think about. Thanks. Secondly I never said or even suggested that “these pastors have no right to criticize Chuck Smith”. You also said my email article “was meant to scare other CC pastors into staying with Calvary” Actually I would like those few pastors who have gone Reformed to leave and not stay if they believe in Reformed theology but call themselves Calvary Chapel pastors. I would also like to see Calvary Chapel pastors who believe it is OK to trash pastor Chuck to leave Calvary Chapel as well. How long would the Calvinists working with and on behalf of James White be around The Dividing Line if they went after him the way these CC pastors went after Chuck? No need to call James to find out. That was a rhetorical question and everyone who knows James knows the answer. From beginning to end your comments suggest that you may not have read my email. If you did read it, given your comments, that is even more problematic.

MY RESPONSE TO BRYSON

For starters, I did read your email completely and as you can see from the posts on the Phoenix Preacher, I actually defended you when it comes to the behavior of the pastors in question.  I think you are right. I think they should leave the movement.  However, being in Calvary for 10 years myself, it was asked of me on many occasion to try to change things from the inside so I can also see the reluctance of the pastors to just up and leave.  To be fair, I think the pastors don’t want to throw the baby out with the bath water.  I must admit, I did have trouble following your logic on a few points.  I had, for instance, difficulty understanding who was speaking in the “accusations” section so it is possible I missed some points.  I do think it was unfair to take a shot at Acts 29.  Though I am a leader in an A29 church, I have had serious concerns for some of Dricoll’s positions on things and have so publicly (Read article on Limited, Unlimited Atonement on this blog)

With that said, my desire to respond in the first place was based on what I would consider an inconsistent standard of using James 3:5.  In one place you are defending your right to speak ill of others (I believe you have that right) but in another case, you seem to be using James 3:5 as a battering ram against others.  I think that is a tad intellectually dishonest.

James White and I agree on many things. I consider him a mentor (I’m sure that comes as no surprise to you). I can say beyond a shadow of a doubt that he would not have an Arminiam on staff. No doubt about it.  However, I think he would not misrepresent Arminianism either. Nor does he make the claim that his ministry is a loose affiliation of churches.  I could be wrong but is that not what is written on Chuck’s book “Distinctives”?

George, what it comes down to is this.  I would love to see you write a book making a positive case for Arminianism and not just a negative case for Calvinism.  You know very well that Calvinists don’t hold to fatalism.  You have been told there is a different between ends and means.  We are the means by which God secures his elect to himself.  It is not true that we spend most of our time evangelizing Arminians.  Certainly we do this no more than you are.  Is it not the point of your book and letter to keep people from joining the Calvinist Caste System?  I think the response you get from people like White and the Phx Preacher is based on the delivery of the materials and inability to be consistent with your accusations .  We want to have dialog with you, Dave Hunt and Norm Geisler, but it seems to be single sided.  Should we not all be seeking the truth with a desire to filter through the philosophies of men?   Certainly I am bias but I am open to any discussion that glorifies God and I know you want the same, so let’s get past the rhetoric and discuss these things like brothers in Christ.

You are welcome to respond in any way and rest assured that I will not augment your comments in any way. not make you look bad.  My blog is open to all points of view.

By the way, I applaud your work in Russia and pray that all continues to go well for you.

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