How Can Calvinists Say "God Causes ALL Things, But He's Not The Cause Of Sin"?
This is taken from the post "Do Calvinists Really Believe God Causes Sin? Let Them Speak For Themselves!" (revised slightly for clarity):
Calvinists believe that in order for God to be a "sovereign" God (their idea of "sovereign," that is) then He has to be the cause of all things. All things! This would include evil and sin.
But most Calvinists know not to accuse God of evil and sin. And so they have to then find ways to deal with the contradiction of "God causes all things, but He doesn't really cause sin and evil."
However, being the cause of ALL THINGS necessarily means that God causes all the evil and sins that happen. Because if (according to their theology) there was one tiny thing that God doesn't cause/control, then He ceases to be God. In Calvinism, an "in-control God" has to be an "all-controlling-everything-all-the-time God."
(Whereas I believe God can still be in-control and sovereign over all, without being totally all-controlling. He can manage everything we and Satan and the world throws at Him and work it all into His plans and into good, without having to be the active cause of it all. Basically, He can allow us to make real decisions on our own, He chooses what to cause and what to simply allow and what to block, and then He works it all into His plans. That's my idea of an in-control, sovereign God, based on what I read in the Bible. Not a god who has to cause everything that happens, even sin, rebellion, unbelief, evil, etc.)
Anyway, to get around the whole "God causes sin" thing (which is essentially what they believe but won't usually say), Calvinism came up with the idea of "ultimate cause" and "secondary cause" (they go by other names, too).
God is the "ultimate cause" of everything that happens, meaning that He predetermined everything that happens and ultimately brings it all about through secondary causes, such as bringing about sin through man's wicked desires and actions. But then they say that because man wants to sin, he chooses to sin, and therefore he is accountable for his sin, even though God is the "ultimate cause" - the planner and orchestrator - of that sin.
It's like saying that God planned for a murder to happen, and so He caused a person to desire to kill, and then that person "chose" to kill. And since that person wanted and "chose" to kill, they are responsible for the murder, not God. Even though God caused the man to desire to kill.
Do you see how twisted and deceptive this is!?!
Listen closely to what I'm about to tell you, because this is the hidden belief (one of the hidden beliefs) behind all the times Calvinists disingenuously say "Of course man has free-will" and "Of course we get to make choices, and so we can be held accountable for our choices":
Ultimately, what they believe is that God alone has determined - from the beginning of time - whom He will give the repentant "saved" nature to (given only to the "elect," those He's predestined for heaven) and whom He will leave as an unrepentant "unsaved" sinner. And if God has chosen to leave you as an unrepentant sinner (based only on His "sovereign" decision, through no fault or decision of your own), you have been left as a depraved sinner who can do no good and who will only always want to sin. Therefore, when you sin, it's because you "chose" to sin ... because you "wanted" to sin ... because you could only desire to sin and choose to sin, according to the unrepentant nature God predetermined you would have.
And they say this can be called "freely making choices you can be held accountable for." That you are the cause of your sin, not God.
What the ...!?!
Basically, God gave you the nature you have, which determined the desires you would have, which led to the actions you would do. You "freely" make the choices that go with the nature God predetermined you would have. You "choose" to do the things God preplanned you would do (and you can't do anything but that). But because you "wanted" to do those things, according to the desires that come with the nature God gave you, you are the cause of your sin, not God. And so you can "justly" be held accountable for it.
This is what is behind all their contradictory "God is totally in control, but we really do make choices" nonsense! Behind their "God causes all things but isn't the cause of sin" hogwash!
Does this sound like free-will to you!?! That you are ultimately the cause of your sins!?! That if God predetermined you'd be an unrepentant sinner, you had any ability to not sin!?!
And this is how they hide their view that "God causes sin." In layers and layers of reeking garbage!
It's frickin' nonsense! A desperate attempt to absolve God of responsibility for evil when their theology essentially and necessarily makes God the cause of all evil!
Do not buy into this garbage! Do not listen to it! If you do - if you entertain this nonsense, trying to make Calvinism fit with the Bible - then you are allowing yourself to be led astray into a wicked theology! What you should do instead is find out how the Bible presents God's sovereignty and how He interacts with man and what He expects from us. Do not start with Calvinism and then try to make the Bible fit. Start with the Bible, and you'll see how wrong - wickedly wrong - Calvinism is!