Tuesday, January 1, 2013

What have the Calvinists ever given us?

The following is meant for humor, and is based off the What have the Romans ever done for us? routine from the Monty Python film Life of Brian.
[The pastor of a Free Will Baptist church sits at a table flanked by his deacon, with many of his fellow church members (FCM) before him]

Pastor: "They criticize us and persecute us! And not just us, but our fathers! And our father's fathers!"

Deacon: "And our father's father's fathers!"

Pastor: "Yeah..."

Deacon: "And our fathers' fathers' fathers' fathers!"

Pastor: "Yeah all right, don't belabor the point. And what have the Calvinists ever given us in return?"

[The room is silent for many seconds, then...]

FCM #1: [raising hand] "...the First Great Awakening?"

Pastor: "...what?"

FCM #1: "The First Great Awakening?"

Pastor: "...oh, yeah yeah, they did give us that, yeah that's true..."

FCM #2: "And the early Protestant missionary movements."

Deacon: "Oh yeah, like the Puritans in New England, John Eliot with the American Indians, David Brainerd and Jonathan Edwards with them as well, William Carey, George Whitefield, David Livingston and others. Remember the Roman Catholics were beating us at missionary work until they stepped in. Over half the early Protestant missionaries were Calvinist."

Pastor: "Yeah all right, I'll grant you the First Great Awakening and the early Protestant missionary movements are two things the Calvinists have done for us..."

FCM #3: "And Pilgrim's Progress!"

Pastor: "Well of course Pilgrim's Progress, I mean Pilgrim's Progress goes without saying! But apart from the First Great Awakening, early Protestant missionary movements, and Pilgrim's Progress..."

FCM #4: "The English Standard Version?"

FCM #5: "Early Protestant confessions?"

FCM #6: "The Pilgrims?"

FCM #7: "And the contemporary works of apologetics!"

Deacon: "Oh yeah, like John Owen, Francis Turretin and others. I mean let's face it, pastor, they're the only ones who could make any order out of messes like Socinianism!"

Pastor: [angrily] "All right, all right! But apart from the First Great Awakening, early Protestant missionary movements, Pilgrim's Progress, the English Standard Version, early Protestant confessions, the Pilgrims, and contemporary apologetics against heresy...what have the Calvinists ever given us?"

FCM #1: "...renewed orthodoxy?"

Pastor: "Oh, renewed orthodoxy...SHUT UP!!"