He who knows that it is God who has chosen him and not he who has chosen God, and that he owes his entire salvation in all its processes and in every one of its stages to this choice of God, would be an ingrate indeed if he gave not the glory of his salvation solely to the inexplicable elective love of God.
B. B. Warfield is well-known as an ardent defender of what is commonly identified as “Calvinism,” which Warfield defines simply as a “profound apprehension of God in His majesty.” In an entry entitled “Calvinism” written in 1908 for the New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge (a massive and respected reference work in its time), the Calvinist, says Warfield is one . . .
who believes in God without reserve, and is determined that God shall be God to him in all his thinking, feeling, willing—in the entire compass of his life-activities, intellectual, moral, spiritual, throughout all his individual, social, religious relations—is, by the force of that strictest of all logic which presides over the outworking of principles into thought and life, by the very necessity of the case, a Calvinist. In Calvinism, then, objectively speaking, theism comes to its rights; subjectively speaking, the religious relation attains its purity; soteriologically speaking, evangelical religion finds at length its full expression and its secure stability.
As for the Calvinist’s understanding of redemption from the guilt and power of sin, Warfield contends we must start with the fact of revelation—Calvinistic doctrine is revealed in Scripture and is not the consequence of human speculation (as often charged). He notes, “a supernatural revelation, in which God makes known to man His will and His purposes of grace; a supernatural record of this revelation in a supernaturally given book, in which God gives His revelation permanency and extension—such things are to the Calvinist almost matters of course.” To paraphrase Warfield here, Calvinism is “biblical.”