I believe it was Paul Helm who said, “the Achilles’ heel of Classical Calvinism-implying that God is the author of sin and evil and thus rendering God morally ambiguous at best.” That’s more than an Achilles heel as far as I’m concerned. I will never accept a point of view on the Bible (and GOD!) that is ok-or complacent-with saying God authors evil. That’s not the God I know nor a harmonious stance to take to the full scope of the Biblical data.
To be fair the strongest argument I know of (besides the one to be presented here), to properly place the issue, is more on the side of one like Don Carson. He has argued that the Bible has a tension between God’s sovereignty and humanity’s responsibility. That seems to be the fairest stance to what the Bible states about the two realities: that the two poles exist (God’s sovereignty, Human responsibility) and are essential to reality. However, being fair doesn’t solve the problem; it settles for ambiguity. And if there are better answers that settle ambiguity, bring clarity, and challenge the Church and the Christian to not only be more wise and practical with their faith but also more ethical and spiritual too then that must be the paradigm and principle to error to.
Luckily for us the great patristic fathers of our faith have left us with an ultimate doctrine to settle the issue and show us why such a stance as Piper’s above is respectable but doesn’t have to be the way. That doctrine is the Trinity.
Simply put, every doctrine is under the authority of the God doctrine. He is our Lord, our savior, our saving grace. So we must do due diligence to understand what he has revealed to us so we can align our hearts to be better equipped for every good deed.
The unifying idea under the Trinity is love. Not his omniscience, or omnipresence, or wisdom, or even the reformers obsession with sovereignty. As great as those attributes are they are null and void if we don’t see that the culmination of the Biblical revelation sums up God as having a tension between love and justice, not his control verses ours. And even with the tension between his love and his justice the Spirit is clear to make it known that his image will not be marred. He will be known and glorified, because of his graceful love.
I can go through the Analytic, Dogmatic, and Systematic approaches to explaining what the doctrine of the Trinity is but that would bore me and wouldn’t settle anything. Let me remind you of the power of our God and the story the Bible tells us about the Trinity. NO Christian of the original strand and orthodox line should be dismayed by the complexity of the Trinity. We all should intuitively understand that we worship the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit as one God (the only divinity). The Father loves so he gave his son. His son was obedient so he could give us his Spirit. The Spirit works to complete the process in and through us. They will not settle until sin, death, and evil are beaten forever. Amen! And we Christians all have this reality integrated into our lives. He is good and loving and in us who believe and are faithful. And any explanation of that reality will be summed up in love-if it must-.