When I was a Protestant I would have considered myself a Calvinist-leaning Evangelical. I liked people like John MacArthur, R.C. Sproul, and James White a lot. I’ve listened to a number of debates from James White, but something I listened to again recently jumped out at me.
James White was defending the limited atonement, and he was challenged with 1 Tim 2:3-4, which contradicts limited atonement by stating that God desires all men to be saved. Under James White’s Calvinism this simply isn’t true. So Mr White reinterprets 1 Tim 2:3-4 to mean “all KINDS of men.”
Likewise James White believes in the Calvinist concept of predestination-- a person is predestined to salvation or damnation as part of God’s timeless infinite plan. That is, a person is predestined to salvation or damnation before they are even born. So before a person experiences being “born again,” while he was still a sinner, he was still one of the Elect, predestined to come to salvation. That is, the sinner was not reprobate and then BECAME Elect, rather, he was elect before he was even born, but simply experiences salvation at a certain point in his life.
So according to James White,
People who are Elect or Reprobate are either elected or reprobate before they are even born. (That is, one does not somehow start off Reprobate and then become Elect, but rather, the person is Elect before they are even born, and the salvation of Election is simply experienced when they are Born Again.)
Likewise, people that are Reprobate are predestined to damnation.
Again, James White believes that God desires “all kinds” of men be saved.
Clearly the Elect and Reprobate are both “kinds” of men.
Therefore, God desires that the Reprobate be saved.
This is obviously a contradiction in James White’s theology. The only way for him to get out of this is to 1) accept the Catholic position or 2) state that people start off Reprobate and then become Elect, which would deny other aspects of pre-destination or 3) state that the Elect and Reprobate are not “kinds of men.”