Adrian Warnock, in a post about the doctrine of “double predestination”, quotes one of his heroes, the 19th century Cambridge preacher Charles Simeon, as follows:
But this is a perversion of the doctrine. It is a consequence which our proud reason is prone to draw from the decrees of God: but it is a consequence which the inspired volume totally disavows. There is not in the whole sacred writings one single word that fairly admits of such a construction.
Thus Simeon shows how wrong is the teaching of double predestination, that God predestines some people to be damned. Adrian agrees with him, and so do I.
But I want to take this a step further. It seems to me that any systematic theology or teaching derived from it needs to be judged according to this criterion, whether it actually consists of “the decrees of God”, or is “a consequence which our proud reason is prone to draw from [these] decrees”. This applies especially to the Reformed systematic theology based on the five points of Calvinism which Adrian is currently expounding in a mini-series. Among the tests which need to be applied here is whether the teaching is “a consequence which the inspired volume totally disavows”. And among the teachings which fail this test I find not only double predestination but indeed the whole system of election and predestination which is the basis of Calvinism. For these are based on the idea that God does not want all to be saved which “the inspired volume totally disavows”, in 1 Timothy 2:4 and 2 Peter 3:9.