Living outside of the US as I do, it’s difficult to follow the cultural trends, particularly those related to church/religion. Yet, for a while now I’ve gotten the impression via the internet that there’s been an increased interest/awareness/enthusiasm for Calvinism back home. Recently, that impression was strenthened by Justin’s post. (And it was just now strengthened even more as I’ve just found out that Scott McKnight was aware of this resurgence of Calvinism as far back as August of 2006. Take note of the posts under his category Post-Calvinism located on the right side of the page.) I appreciated Justin’s post because he affirmed those aspects of “New Calvinism” which ought to be affirmed while encouraging caution.
My experience as of late indicates that these NeoCals tend to see theology in two camps: Calvinists and Arminians. (Perhaps they also see Papists but that’s a speculation on my part and not an experience.) I would like to add to Justin’s caution that the NeoCals remember that both theology and humans are more complex than that. Immediately assuming that non-Calvinists are Arminians and treating them with contempt does not encourage dialogue. For that matter, calling folks Pelagians and/or Semi-Pelagians isn’t good for communication either.
Perhaps someone more in tune with the culture in the states could post some advice as to how to recognize a NeoCal from a distance thereby giving the rest of us the option of avoiding praying against for them.