John 6 Series

I will be doing a series on John 6 as it has become the favorite Calvinist proof text for the doctrines of unconditional election, irresistible grace, and inevitable perseverance. For some Calvinists it is the answer to every Arminian objection to “Reformed” theology. For this reason I want to take a close look at this chapter.

I will begin by explaining the Calvinist interpretation of the passage in such a way that I hope every Calvinist who reads it will nod his or her head in hearty agreement. I will then spend some time dissecting the “Reformed” interpretation to see if it conforms to sound exegesis. My third post will describe and discuss the presuppositions that will control my exegesis of the text. The final post in the series will be a detailed exegesis of the entire chapter from an Arminian perspective.

Please be patient with me as I work my way through this series. It is just in the early stages at present. I am excited about this series and hope that both my Arminian and Calvinist friends will benefit from it. If nothing else, it should generate some interesting discussions. Till then….

10 thoughts on “John 6 Series

  1. All gospel exegesis with specific doctrinal focus, must rely heavily on epistle foundation, especially Pauline.

    I look forward to your treatise.

  2. Cannot wait! I hope to benefit greatly from it, as we tend to glean from each other things that we had not thought of ourselves.

    God bless you as you study.


  3. Actually one of the big problems with Protestant theology has been the subordination of [the teaching of] Jesus to Paul. Christian doctrine should have its foundation in Jesus, and only in that light will Paul and the rest be properly understood.

    Have fun with your study.

  4. sean – it is the reverse, Jesus taught Paul the revelation of the church which was hidden before then. Even Peter and James and the rest had to be instructed about Gentile conversions and the uselessness of the law.

    There are many time that Jesus mad salvation sound like works because he was dealing with the Jews who thought they could keep the law. Justification by faith is exclusively Pauling, coming of course from Christ Himself.

  5. Nope. Putting Paul first allows people to ignore a whole lot of things Jesus told them to do. Also, it’s the only way Calvinism is possible.

  6. I have not seen an Arminian counter-exegesis to Calvinist claims in John Chapter 6. I am also looking forward to your defense of Arminianism

  7. “Also, it’s the only way Calvinism is possible.”

    Have you ever heard of the book of Romans?

  8. To a large extent, Calvinism is maintained by establishing a theological grid based on certain aspects of Paul’s teaching then interpreting the rest of the Bible (especially the NT) from that perspective. Romans, especially chapter 9 (but not 10), features prominently in this system.

    OTOH, if one starts with Jesus’ life and teaching, especially in the Synoptics, it is extremely difficult to arrive at a Calvinistic theological system. Hence the push by some to subordinate the Gospels to the Epistles.

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