November 13, 2008

Dr. Curt Daniel on the Free Offer, The Will of God and Hyper-Calvinism

Hypers usually reject the idea of offers that are free, serious, sincere, or well-meant.
Curt Daniel, The History and Theology of Calvinism (Springfield, Ill.: Good Books, 2003), 89.

Curt Daniel lists four "main Hyper-Calvinist arguments" against "free offers" along with the historic Calvinist reply. The fourth in the list says:
(4) "Free offers imply that God wishes all men to be saved. This contradicts the doctrine of election. It also implies that grace is universal." But: The Reformed doctrine of the revealed will of God is that there is a sense in which God certainly does will the salvation of all who hear the Gospel, just as He wills all who hear the Law to obey. He has no pleasure in the death of the one who rejects either Law or Gospel. True Reformed theology keeps the balance between the secret will (election) and the revealed will (Gospel), but Hyperism over-emphasizes the secret will. Similarly, special grace reflects election and the secret will, but there is also common grace for all men as creatures in the revealed will.
Ibid., 90.

Curt Daniel also briefly discusses this in his doctoral dissertation.

See Curt Daniel, Hyper-Calvinism and John Gill (Unpublished Ph.D. dissertation, University of Edinburgh, 1983), 426–429.

Update on 9-19-14:
'Free offer' was the debated term in mainstream Hyper-Calvinism, but 'well-meant offer' has been the debated phrase within the Hoeksema school. In essence, however, they are one and the same. The first simply brings out the aspect that God wishes to give something without cost, while the second points to God's willingness that it be accepted.
Curt Daniel, Hyper-Calvinism and John Gill (Unpublished Ph.D. dissertation, University of Edinburgh, 1983), 410.

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