John Calvin: Murderer, Heretic
On October 27, 1553, Michael Servetus was publicly tortured and executed at the order of John Calvin who had plotted his demise for seven years. This sinister deviant had his prisoner cruelly burned at the stake in a manner that was especially slow and painful. The logs selected were green so that it prolonged the burn time. Sulphur was placed on his head, to increase the agony. After 30 minutes of crying out to God for mercy, the victim finally expired. The perpetrator of this crime never repented, but went on to execute an estimated 38 more before he died ten years later. Michael Servetus’s crime was that he differed on some of Calvin’s interpretations of scriptures. What kind of a monster would arrest a fellow believer after a church meeting, and cruelly execute him because they had a disagreement? How on earth did he manipulate God’s word to justify his actions? He is now the darling of a group who twists scripture to their liking as he did. Any Christian who seeks to be holy should distance themselves from this murderous heretic, and be ashamed to be associated with any group using his name.
Not only did Calvinism have a butcher as their founder, they pride themselves in his same ill treatment of scriptural doctrine, accurately following his example. They arrogantly declare themselves as the only true bastions of correct biblical interpretation, and verbally assassinate any one with differing opinions.
Exodus 34:6-7 a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the children’s children, to the third and the fourth generation.
When someone becomes a Christian, they relinquish all rights to control. This issue eventually comes up with every Christian that is truly seeking God’s will for their lives. It should come as no surprise when our will is crossed, or when things don’t go as planned, or when things seem unbearably difficult. It’s not that God doesn’t care, or even that the devil cares too much. It’s just part of the turf, and we might as well get used to it, because they are going to get a lot harder. Real Christianity is all about suffering. It’s an artificial faith that avoids suffering at all costs. The prosperity gospel works fine in parts of the US and even Canada, where they have had relative peace. At least until now. For the rest of the world it’s a mirage. The frequency and ferocity of persecution is unprecedented in history, but goes largely unreported by western press.
I believe there is soon coming a time, when persecution will come to our shores. Those not accustomed to losing control to a loving father God, who cares for us, will not stand in the day of persecution. They will leave the faith in droves as their theology does not prepare them for opposition.
Last week, I was ridiculed for speaking the truth about my faith by some ex Christians. I wasn’t tortured, or have my property confiscated. My children weren’t butchered in front of me. My family didn’t disown me. Giving up our reputation and our comfort is necessary to enter his rest as spoken of in Hebrews 4.
A dear friend who has been a Christian for some time now, is a very controlled person. All aspects of his life are regimented and orderly. A situation recently occurred in which he lost his grip on that control. I trust that he will find God’s grace and be able to find rest in trusting his Savior, and letting things go.
What does the future look like for my children and grandchildren?
Will they know the same level of peace that I have enjoyed and taken for granted?
The future looks so tenuous and fragile.
What does a 3rd world country look like?
1./ rampant inflation.
Every day goods are priced out of reach of common people.
2./ Businesses and homes have bars on all the windows as anarchy reigns.
3./ Unemployment becomes the occupational norm.
4./ The government has dictator like powers.
5./ Personal freedoms and rights are stripped away.
6./ People become slaves within their own country as foreign owners pillage the natural resources.
7./ Fear and hopelessness fills the hearts of the people.
When God removes His presence and hand of blessing, when the people refuse to repent, the devil has free reign to ravish the country. You will know this has begun when fear begins to replace the peace we have enjoyed for so many years.
Prophets are generally an odd lot, relying on feelings and impressions; very subjective stuff. Hearing from God, and relaying what you hear to people, is fraught with pitfalls. So much so that most churches don’t want to have anything to do with prophets.
Like it or not, prophets do exist, and God does choose to speak through them occasionally. I’ve known some prophets that were mightily used of God and a genuine blessing to the body of Christ. Unfortunately, most prophets I’ve met have been loose cannons, of absolutely no use to the church whatsoever. They were a thorn in the side of their pastors. When God speaks a word to a prophet, or when the prophet has a dream or sees a vision, his job is to deliver the message, period.
I see five problematic issues with that delivery:
Human nature is to want to have control over that message, to make sure it is fulfilled, to ensure that people listen to and act on it; to see it through to fruition. However, once they’ve delivered the message, it’s none of their business what God does with it, only that they deliver it accurately and in the right spirit.
The messenger adds a little bit of his own twist to it. Of course the word passes through a human messenger, and it’s difficult for them not to add a few of their own ideas. It’s a learned skill that takes lots of practice to get right. When you think about it, no prophet really wants to say words that God didn’t say.
Prophets tend to be proud of the insight God has given them. Unless they deal harshly with that pride, God will judge them. He shares His glory with nobody.
In 1 Cor.12:28 it says “first apostles, then prophets.” Why second? Hearing straight from God, shouldn’t they be first? Apparently not. I think God knew that their pride would become a stumbling block, and they would need to come under the authority of the apostle. That’s true for any prophet, whether they are a big name prophet, or a lowly one; it begins with the authority God has placed at hand. God’s heart is that prophets would come under and submit to His delegated authority, starting with submitting to the pastor and his elders.
There are plenty of prophetic people who have never submitted to anyone’s authority. They are like wild horses, useless without a bit and bridle, just running around blowing off steam.
The man with a prophetic nature sees sin under every stone. This tends to make him jaded, cynical, and judgmental. This angry prophet sees the world for what it is, is upset by the sin he sees, but feels he has no outlet to vent that displeasure. His frustration leads to anger. A mature response is to seek God’s heart for people’s sin, and see beyond his anger to feel His compassion. Compassion, with God, always leads to His provision for salvation and grace. The prophet needs to go beyond the anger stage. He mustn’t forget that the anger of man does not accomplish the will of God, lest he becomes just an “angry young prophet,” not reflecting the whole nature of God. In the end, he gives an incomplete picture of God, and is of limited use in furthering the kingdom of God.