25 June 2012

Ed Young, Jr.: "Reformed is Deformed"

Texas megachurch pastor Ed Young, Jr. took to Twitter to attack Reformed theology with the following remark:
Since Young is an SBC pastor, one almost wonders if he was offering his response to the controversial SBC document, A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation, which speaks rather critically of Calvinism. After a few hours of feedback and responses, Young posted this:
Well, who's going to pass up that invitation? The relevant portion of Young's sermon from Part 4 of his series, "Cool-Aid," is below. Note that when Young speaks of "Reformed theology" or "Calvinism," it is evident that he is referring specifically to the 5 points of Calvinism, or the Doctrines of Grace.


Now, there is far too much contained in this clip to respond to all of it. Suffice it to say that Young has clearly demonstrated that he is utterly ignorant of what Reformed theology actually teaches. The problem lies not in the fact that Ed Young has chosen to attack Reformed theology, but that he has provided a bizarre, inaccurate caricature of it. 

That Ed Young, Jr. would preach such nonsense, and then advertise and boast about it is a sad reflection of the state of the church today. It is an egregious and disheartening thought to know that this man, this "pastor", is leading countless numbers astray.

*Note: In the above clip, Ed Young, Jr. speaks about bloggers, and in true seeker-driven pastor fashion (no pun intended), characterizes them as Basement Living Opinion Givers who compose their blog posts from their parents' basement. Well, Ed, just to let you know, I am writing this from my very own desk chair on my very own computer in my very own house that I pay for with my very own money every month. I just thought you should know.
**Special thanks to Ken Silva of Apprising Ministries for the creation of this video clip.


  1. So Calvinists don't follow the great commission? And they prey on young believers? And they wear skinny jeans? And they think they're better than everyone? And they're bloggers who live in their mom's basements? And they only have negative things to say?

    I suppose Reformed churches probably don't know how to properly exegete an eagle and therefore can only pluck sheep from other congregations.

    At least he expressed his thoughts in a fairly straight ahead manner. He's wrong, but give him credit for articulating his feelings on the subject.

    1. Not from the pulpit, bro. I cannot, in good conscience, give him any credit for anything he said. The pulpit is not for the preacher's thoughts. I hope some of the people that were there that morning had enough "cojones" to get up and leave. Although his message was nonsense, we do need to help people understand he's just having a "hissy fit."

    2. "So Calvinists don't follow the great commission? And they prey on young believers? And they wear skinny jeans? And they think they're better than everyone? And they're bloggers who live in their mom's basements? And they only have negative things to say?"

      Sounds accurate to me.


    3. Have a listen to the Ed Young segment of the Podcast at the link below. Chris Rosebrough of Fighting for the Faith discusses and responds (briefly) to Ed's straw-man attack on calvinism..



  2. So much nonsense in that video that I'm tempted to ask if he's doing crack? Utterly, foolish IGNORANCE in the first degree, but he sounds convincing to "his" sheep. Who can learn who God is, being fed the pure milk of the word, exercising proper judgment so that we would desire and feast on meat, and yet not have a concern for others, a heart to reach out with that same Gospel that set us free?

  3. Charles Spurgeon is spinning in his grave. Ed Young ignorant of Reformed theology? That's an understatement. Maybe Eddy should lecture RC about the pitfalls of Calvinism. Of course Sproul would take Young to "a whole nutha level" I'm sorry but every time this guy opens his mouth he continues to confirm how unbelievably uneducated he really is. This is what's populating America's pulpits. No wonder Western "Christians" are so flaky.

  4. The sad thing was there was no rational arguments in his diatribe. He used Straw Men, Ad Homimium attacks, appeal to popularity and feelings to make his point. No Bible (apart from John 3:16). No substance. No clear understanding for Reformed Theology. Heck, no clear stance of his position. In fact, at one point, he seems to mix up the Emergent Crowd and the Reformed community. While there is some over lap with them, most in the Reformed community care deeply about proclaiming the Gospel, just in a different way. His church boasts not about the Gospel but "changing the world".

    He fails to mention the sheep they "swap" are coming from Churches like his because the truth has won them over to the Doctrine of Grace and away from Man-centered revivalist Pietism. He may have convert to some gospel but not the Biblical one. The only correct thing he said was he and the reformed crowd preach a different gospel. While he claims the Reformed have put God in a Box, isn't He the one that thinks God has to work through his means so isn't he just as guilty?

  5. Wow, I listened to his whole sermon (part 4), and that was infuriating.... What a straw-man argument to mislead masses. I've encountered people hostile to Calvinism, and when you ask them about it they have no idea what the doctrines of Grace are.
    I'm not so much upset by the ad hominem attacks, or caricatures he paints with his deceitful words. What I do find so upsetting is that he is disturbing these people from having true peace with God, that comes with the doctrines of Grace. I am reminded of when Paul was writing to the Galatians and he says:
    “3 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, 4 who gave Himself for our sins so that He might rescue us from this present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, 5 to whom be the glory forevermore. Amen.
    6 I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; 7 which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ.”
    The false teachers were disturbing the Galatians from the peace that comes from the gospel. I realize that the message of the false teachers in the Galatian churches is different than what Ed Young spouts. But I think the principle to be gleaned from that passage is that false teachers disturb people. And that’s exactly what this preaching will sow in the minds of the undiscerning listener.

  6. If anyone is guilty of "putting God in a box" it is Mr. Young and all of his cohearts at the SBC and elsewhere that are preaching a different Gospel with another jesus as per Gal. 1:6-9. The other clip that Ken showed was Ed Y at Osteen's arena in Houston. Could it be that E Y is going to advance his kingdom by going deeper into heresy with WoF garbage?

    Back to the SBC debacle. If you've not read the "Statement" as linked above you'll miss the real source of divisiveness and growing hatred exhibited by those of the Arminian/free-will camp. Another good read is the Eric Hankins version of the "sinner's prayer". The SBC passed a watered down version, but it still is unbiblical. As one who was "saved twice" by the praying of such a "prayer" I have zero tolerance for such nonsense. Even Al Mohler's response was disappointing. On Tom Ascol's Founder's blog I found him to speak as one who held to the doctrines of grace and yet was all to eager to give a pass to the authors of the statement as being brothers in Christ with an entirely different view of salvation. There are not two ways to be saved: the one Biblically prescribed way of being saved by grace through faith (you are chosen, predestined unto salvation) or the Arminian way of a sinner seeking God on their own terms and time and by an act of their "free-will" choose to be "saved". There are not two ways to becoming a child of God. If one is truly saved by an act of their will, then that person has no need of grace.

    If those of the reformed camp in the SBC and elsewhere are more interested in some form of convoluted "unity" at the expense of the truth of the Word then there is little hope that other truthes of the Word will not be allowed to be dismantled in similar fashion.

    It has been said by some that a great percentage of church members are actually lost. It ranges from 50% to as many as 90%. Perhaps the greatest mission field is the modern church of America.

  7. Replies
    1. I could not even get through this short clip of this guy's mouth. The only things that come close to his utter ignorance, are his crass vulgar attacks on all who disagree with him - his entire stage presence is an ugly assault on the senses of Christ's bride.

  8. The poor guy has absolutely no clue what is talking about...truly sad.

    The "hip and cool" stuff he was blasting I agree with whole heartedly...but is he not the epitomy of "hip and cool"? Does pastorfashion.com ring any bells? How about the whole "layin' in my bed on the roof of my church" silliness??

    He may be filling seats and "reaching" a boatload of people but what is he "reaching" them with? Judging from his complete and utter lack of understanding of the subject he just ranted about for a good little bit, it isn't the biblical gospel.

  9. This gut Young is just an utter ignoranus and a neophyte. Not only he is completely clueless about Reformed Faith and especially Reformed Theology but he also speaks to a mostly clueless crowd that swallows his words from his clown mouth. Does any of these people know that so many missionaries and martyrs were and are Calvinists? Does any of them know that Reformed Geneva sent so many missionaries all over the Europe and so frequently to a certain and almost guaranteed death like in France or Italy? Does any of them know that Geneva Calvinists went on a long missionary journey to Brasil and started a mission near Rio de Janeiro in XVI century which despite Roman Catholic onslaught still produced fruit present to this day in the sea of darkness?

  10. By the way calling Reformers "Deformers" or Reformed Faith "deformed faith" is a know slapstick name calling used by Roman Catholics. Ed Young is showing where he is closer not only by his semi pelagianism akin to Romanism but also by his usage of Roman Catholic names against Reformation. Very telling, is it not?

  11. It has never occured to Ed Young Jr that he's the one with the serious problem,,,,, yet. Lol it's just puerile storytelling time for him and his usual kindergarten rebuttal..

    He has to keep up his rhetoric because this is the ONLY way he can survive

    1. Yes, apparently some folks by the Grace of God begun to leave his clown show entertainment center and Ed got upset about threatened cash flow. He needs it with his gulfstream jet lifestyle... Too bad he did not read up about what he caricatured and mumbled about because in the process he showed himself to be a clueless clown.

  12. This guy contradicts himself repeatedly. Additionaly, he sounds like he's having a phsychological breakdown. Not sure what Calvinist did him wrong, but it seems he's focusing on man, who will always disappoint, rather than on Christ who is always faithful. Oh, and he seems to be projecting a bit as well. I know quite a few evangelical Calvinists who will tell you they do not have God "figured out" and certainly don't have God in a box. If anything, Arminians put God in a box and limit His control over their lives.

    Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her.

    So, who exactly did Christ die for? His Church.

    1. "So, who exactly did Christ die for? His Church."

      Indeed as confirmed and taught by Him on other places like:

      "just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the SHEEP."
      (John 10:15 ESV)

      "And for THEIR sake I consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth."

      (John 17:19 ESV)

  13. So I'm clearly in the minority here (despite being fully in the reformed "camp," FWIW), but I think there are some fragments of coherency and a reasonable argument in all of this, it just comes together really poorly.

    I think his biggest mistake is directing this attack at Calvinists and Reformed Theology. I've never heard anyone well-reasoned explanation of Reformed theology that didn't see evangelism as being a key component. By making his attack this way he lumps everyone together, applies some incredibly lame stereotypes, and gets everyone riled up.

    That being said, I think he makes some reasonable points. I have been on mission trips that seemed almost 100% focused on social justice without much if any of what Young would consider true evangelism. I think such trips serve a greater good than Young would lead you to believe, and hopefully help lay groundwork for future spiritual and social good, but he's not entirely off the reservation on that point.

    However, I don't think this (or other problems he mentions) are exclusive to Reformed churches. They're exclusive to broken people who have an innate tendency to seek comfort (i.e., everyone)

    I think it's obvious that this attack is poorly formed and inappropriate from the pulpit, and I think we should say that loud and clear. But if we can filter out the BS then we might be able to come away with some useful takeaways.

    1. 'That being said, I think he makes some reasonable points. I have been on mission trips that seemed almost 100% focused on social justice without much if any of what Young would consider true evangelism."

      I would say that mega "church" seeker friendly movement is specializing in that case point Willow Creek "Church" and if any Reformed Churches succumb to that they are being led astray by the influence of this mega seeker movement.

  14. Yeow. Enough to make a grown man seek to step outside and vacate the contents of his stomach.

  15. And so it is that Ed Young Jr ends up refuting his own arguments by his own examples. Why is he himself putting God in a Box?

    The problem with his argument is there is Calvinism and then there is New Calvinism which are not the same things.

    he is attempting to speak out one side of his mouth by arguing correctly about "New Calvinism" and then he's denouncing Calvinism which has nothing to do with New Calvinism by trying to distance himself from the very thing he adheres to

    He's using equivocation which is a great tool people use to tear down bible believing Christians. They usually start with the well-known meaning of the "broad" word, and eventually switch over to that meaning which brings them benefit.

    Here's a site on New Calvinism-http://watchmanforjesus.blogspot.com/2011/11/new-calvinism-explaining-and-exposing.html

  16. Dr.James White responds to the frantic, deceitful rant of Ed Young:

    1. Thanks for the link, Despeville. I heard White's stellar response and plan on posting it this week as well.

    2. Thanks Despeville you're a blessing, I look forwards to listening to it

  17. I always enjoy listening to James White.

    Thank you so much Despeville for the audio. White knows how to gently expose people like Young like diffusing a bomb before they cause such unwarranted stir...

  18. I find it interesting...or actually rather sad...that Mr. Young has used his platform, the pulpit, to cast judgement on other believers. In his attempt to warn his congregation about those churches that would prey on young believers or any believers really, he misses the instruction of Luke 6:37. “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven."

    Rather than protect the pulpit and use it as an avenue to preach the Holy Word of God he has used it as a means to tear down other believers. Making fun of the doctrines and theology they embrace. Could it be that Mr. Young and many in the church like him are spending so much time on Sunday Morning, tweeting and blogging during the week about the "dangers of Reformed Theology" because not only do they not fully grasp the freedom and glories of God's grace...but they fear the impact that full knowledge of such truths will have on their ministries?

    What is the old saying..."I think you doth protest too much."

    Soli Deo gloria!
    Dana in Huntsville, AL

  19. Ed is concerned because his church is losing members in high numbers. They are running to other churches. And they are going to ones, "Right across the street". Why? They are waking up to the fact that Ed has one concern, money.


Please keep it pithy (in other words, if your comment is long enough to be its own blog post, don't bother), pertinent (please don't go off-topic), and respectful (to the author, to the other readers, and to the subject of the post). If you can't do that, your comment will not be posted.

If you haven't already, please read the Comment Policy in its entirety.