Saturday, May 24, 2008

Comments on the Flyswatter


Occasionally, an evident Hybrid-friendly person who is not Flyswatter-friendly will make some denigrating remark about the number of comments, or the lack thereof, on the Flyswatter. I will address that subject:

First, the Flyswatter is not part of a sect, cult, movement, or Internet "band" such as many of those in the "Reformed" Hybrid Calvinist camp. I have noticed that many, if not most, of the links on those blogs are to the same blogs. For example, Brister links the Flounders, and the Flounders links Brister, etc. The Flyswatter does not have such a clique linking it.

Second, the Flyswatter is "going against the grain" in regard to what passes today as "Calvinism" among the "Reformed" clique. Since we are specifically here to "swat" the "Reformed" aberrancies, we are obviously not trying to use "honey" to catch the flies. A lot of people who may visit this blog don't quite "understand" some of the issues we are confronting. They don't seem to realize there is a category of thinking other than "Arminian" and "Reformed." So they withhold commenting.

Third, some who have posted have managed to only achieve embarrassment due to their lack of knowledge and valid information on the subjects. They don't want to get "burned" again, so they don't post further comments.

Fourth, some who are basically in sympathy with the Flyswatter do not post because they are apprehensive about "identifying" with this blog. I get a few emails to this effect, and that's fine by me.

Fifth, I have noticed some blogs which have quite a number of comments are from "repeaters" or "regulars" -- they seem to constitute the "choir." It looks as if some of those are "addicted" to seeing their comments on the blog, as if what they say is "significant."

Sixth, the Flyswatter does not "court" comments. I've noticed some blogs aggressively encourage comments, and we have never done that.

Seventh, we are not in the "promotion" business -- we are not pushing a conference, a book, or something else. So we don't pull any comments about things such as that.

Eighth, we have achieved "boycott" status by some of the "major" blogs, and "warnings" have gone out against the Flyswatter. We wear such "boycotts" as a badge of honor.

Ninth, Charles doesn't sit at his computer and instantly post the comments. He is not a "full-time" blogger, and sometimes is not "in pocket" for days. That may discourage some from posting, but that's just how things are.

Tenth, we do receive a number of favorable posts, and we believe these will increase as more-and-more people come to understand what we are saying about Hybrid Calvinism, the "Reformed," the Flounders, and others who promote a non-creedal version of Calvinism and its related aberrancies.


At Sunday, May 25, 2008 8:38:00 PM, Blogger Mark said...

Then could we just try an experiment, then? All loyal readers of the flyswatter, or even anyone who reads this particular post, place a commment on here. Say ANYTHING. Just to give us an idea how many read this palabber at all.

At Sunday, May 25, 2008 10:37:00 PM, Anonymous Jim R said...

Thanks for this post it clears some things up for me. Question, you talk about "hardshells" and "Reformed" and list some names, could you perhpas list some names of Reformed theologians tha tyou do favor??

I understand that Spurgeon is one, what would you say of Owen, Bunyan, and Gill? I enjoy reading these men and wonder if you think them to be "reformed" or Reformed.

At Monday, May 26, 2008 8:39:00 PM, Blogger Charles said...

Nice try Mark.

At Monday, May 26, 2008 10:44:00 PM, Blogger Bob L. Ross said...


Jim R said...

. . . could you perhpas list some names of Reformed theologians tha tyou do favor??

Bunyan, Gill, and Owen were not advocates of the current "Reformed" view of "born again before faith."

For example, the following is from John Owen:

Secondly, It [the Gospel] is salvation efficiently, in that it is the great instrument which God is pleased to use in and for the collation and bestowing salvation upon his elect. Hence the apostle calls it "the power of God unto salvation," Romans 1:16; because God in and by it exerts his mighty power in the saving of them that believe; as it is again called, 1 Corinthians 1:18.

Hence there is a saving power ascribed unto the word itself. . . . But this will the better appear if we consider the several principal parts of this salvation, and the efficiency of the word as the instrument of God in the communication of it unto us; as,

1. In the regeneration and sanctification of the elect, the first external act of this salvation. This is wrought by the word, 1 Peter 1:23: "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God;" wherein not only the thing itself, or our regeneration by the word, but the manner of it also, is declared. It is by the collation of a new spiritual life upon us, whereof the word is the seed. As every life proceeds from some seed, that hath in itself virtually the whole life, to be educed from it by natural ways and means, so the word in the hearts of men is turned into a vital principle, that, cherished by suitable means, puts forth vital acts and operations.

By this means we are "born of God" and "quickened," who "by nature are children of wrath, dead in trespasses and sins."

So Paul tells the Corinthians that he had "begotten them in Christ Jesus through the gospel," 1 Corinthians 4:15. I confess it doth not do this work by any power resident in itself, and always necessarily accompanying its administration; for then all would be so regenerated unto whom it is preached, and there would be no neglecters of it. But it is the instrument of God for this end; and mighty and powerful through God it is for the accomplishment of it. And this gives us our first real interest in the salvation which it doth declare. Of the same use and efficacy is it in the progress of this work, in our sanctification, by which we are carried on towards the full enjoyment of this salvation. So our Savior prays for his disciples, John 17:17, "Sanctify them through thy truth, thy word is truth," as the means and instrument of their sanctification; and he tell his apostles that they were "clean through the word that he had spoken unto them," chapter 15:3. For it is the food and nourishment whereby the principle of spiritual life which we receive in our regeneration is cherished and increased, 1 Peter 2:2; and so able to "build us up," until it "give us an inheritance among them that are sanctified."
(Owen on Hebrews 2, Vol. I, pages 364, 364 of the CD-ROM).

Also, from Owen's Works, Volume 6, pages 597, 598:

1. Regeneration doth not in order of time precede the soul's interest in the forgiveness that is with God, or its being made partaker of the pardon of sin. I say no more but that it doth not precede it in order of time, not determining which hath precedency in order of nature. That, I confess, which the method of the gospel leads unto is, that absolution, acquitment, or the pardon of sin, is the foundation of the communication of all saving grace unto the soul, and so precedeth all grace in the sinner whatever. But because this absolution or pardon of sin is to be received by faith, whereby the soul is really made partaker of it and all the benefits belonging thereunto, and that faith is the radical grace which we receive in our regeneration, "for it is by faith that our hearts are purified, as an instrument in the hand of the great purifier, the Spirit of God," I place these two together, and shall not dispute as to their priority in nature; but in time the one doth not precede the other. . . .

When convinced persons cried out, "What shall we do to be saved?" the answer was, "Believe, and ye shall be so." "Believe in Christ, and in the remission of sin by his blood," is the first thing that convinced sinners are called unto. They are not directed first to secure their souls that they are born again, and then afterward to believe; but they are first to believe that the remission of sin is tendered unto them in the blood of Christ, and that "by him they may be justified from all things from which they could not be justified by the law."

On Dr. John Gill, Brother Stephen Garrett has an extensive study of Gill's views on his blog: website

Stephen demonstrates that Dr. Gill does not take the "Reformed" or "Hardshell" view of "born again before faith."

I would also recommend Stephen Charnock, Thomas Watson, and Abraham Booth

-- to name a few on the new birth or regeneration who do not take the "Reformed" view.

At Monday, May 26, 2008 10:56:00 PM, Blogger Bob L. Ross said...


Mark said...

. . . ANYTHING. Just to give us an idea how many read this palabber at all.

Well, we know at least one who reads the Flyswatter, don't we?

At Tuesday, May 27, 2008 8:06:00 AM, Blogger Mark said...


Bob Ross said:
"Well, we know at least one who reads the Flyswatter, don't we?"

I guess it's like watching a train wreck, Bob...
BUT quite amusing was your justification for the miniscule number of readers, uh, commenters.
Somewhat of a nice try.

At Wednesday, May 28, 2008 7:43:00 AM, Blogger Rick said...

My guess is there are plenty of Calvinists who read the blog. Few are probably brave enough to get into a dialogue with someone who completely disagrees with them.

Makes sense.

TULIP is ridiculous and it is easy to dispell.

So, they move on to someone who might believe them.

Or, they'll dredge up one of the letters a little later, dust it off and try throwing it out to the world.

They're an insignificant group and they always will be.

At Wednesday, May 28, 2008 11:23:00 AM, Blogger Stephen Garrett said...

Thanks Bob!

Yes, Dr. Gill was no "reformed" or "Hardshell" in regard to the novel idea of "born again before faith."

I think other writers that could be mentioned in line with Spurgeon, Gill, and Bunyan are Spilsbury, Kiffin, Knollys, and Keach. These men were able expounders of the word of God.

I also personally like A. W. Pink, Boyce, Carroll, Graves, Pendleton, Broadus, Dagg, Simmons, many of our great Baptist theologians. We have no need to go to the "pedos" for good writings on Calvinism.

Keep up the good work here! I read! I read! The Lord he reads too! Surely he counts, right?

God bless


At Wednesday, May 28, 2008 7:27:00 PM, Blogger Bob L. Ross said...


There are doubtlessly some who are like me -- they take notice of a few blogs but they never post.

The Flyswatter is actually the only blog on which I have ever even attempted to post. And I only posted here because Charles took one of my email articles and used it, and I later posted to say "Thanks."

After that, Charles signed me up to a lucrative contract to post here exclusively. I don't know where he gets his money, but he is surely a generous man!

Even a free
"White Lightnin'" Cruise could not lure me away from the Flyswatter!

At Wednesday, May 28, 2008 7:51:00 PM, Blogger tjp said...

I read this blog. And I find it both humorous and instructive.

I always appreciate a man who stands on main things. And brother Ross's opposition to the "regeneration-before-faith" nonsense is a main thing.



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