Are You a True Calvinist?

Disagreements abound on the question of what exactly makes someone a true Calvinist, and that’s why I’m here—to set the record straight. Put simply, being a Calvinist has little to do with affirming the teachings of a 16th-century theologian and much to do with following the antics of a six-year-old boy. More specifically, you are only worthy of the label “Calvinist” if you are able to demonstrate a working knowledge of Bill Waterson’s cartoon strip Calvin and Hobbes.

I know this sounds a bit elitist, but I have found myself greatly offended on many occasions by people who run on at the mouth, saying things like, “Oh, wow, am I ever a great big Calvinist!”, but who don’t even know the name of Calvin’s schoolteacher. (It’s Miss Wormwood, for all you Arminians.)

This leads me to what I think is a reasonable test for determining whether or not you are true Calvinist. Put simply, if you can’t answer at least 10 of the following 12 questions about Waterson’s Calvin, please keep your so-called “Calvinism” to yourself and leave the rest of us purists in peace. It’s hard enough out here.

  1. What is Calvin’s favorite breakfast cereal?
  2. What is the name of Calvin’s favorite bedtime storybook?
  3. What is the name of the bully at Calvin’s school?
  4. What is the name of the superhero that Calvin becomes?
  5. What is the name of Calvin’s babysitter?
  6. What is the name of the invention that Calvin uses to reproduce himself?
  7. What is the last name of Susie, Calvin’s “friend” at school?
  8. What is the name of Calvin’s club (it met in his tree house)?
  9. What is the name of Calvin’s uncle (his dad’s brother)?
  10. What did Calvin’s dad like to do with the family while on vacation?
  11. What is Calvin’s favorite sport?
  12. What is the first thing that Hobbes would often do when Calvin arrived home from school?

So, other than Rich Ryan, any true Calvinists out there?

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10 responses to this post.

  1. Looks like I am a true Calvinist. Good to know…

  2. Me too… great theology in Calvin & Hobbes. :) Even my favorite teacher, S. Lewis Johnson, thought so!

  3. Thanks Matt. Hope yet remains, even for you.
    You may yet develop the will power to resist grammarian impulses and say yes to cartoons.
    It requires a fortitude that is best developed through rigorous training.
    A diet of chocolate-frosted-sugar-bombs helps.

  4. Posted by Jerry Wragg on July 1, 2010 at 4:49 pm

    I’m more of a Hobbesinian myself…

  5. Posted by Joshua Torrence on July 1, 2010 at 10:47 pm

    How disappointing. I was hoping for harder questions.

  6. Joshua: Sounds like you might be a hyper-Calvinist.

  7. Posted by linda on July 6, 2010 at 8:06 pm

    can you post the answers for hose like me who are new to the comic Calvin, but not to Reformed Theology.
    ?

  8. Posted by Andy Lynch on July 7, 2010 at 7:49 pm

    Matt, Thanks for reminding me that in my current vocation I have taken one too many head-shots; I can hardly remember any of the answers. Maybe Space-Man Spiff can loan me a helmet he’s not using anymore, haha.

  9. I apparently haven’t had enough exposure to Calvin (or Hobbes) so I am afraid I don’t meet muster.

  10. Posted by 1cross3nails on July 14, 2010 at 4:50 pm

    Is that an attempt at humor? I ain’t laughin!!

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