Posts Tagged ‘calvinism vs arminianism debate’

The Doctrines of Grace are clearly taught in the tenth chapter of the gospel of John. “sheep” are believers.

John 10

14 I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own. 15 As the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. 16 And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd.

Who did Christ lay down his life for? The sheep. All who will be believers. The elect

24 Then the Jews surrounded Him and said to Him, “How long do You keep us in doubt? If You are the Christ, tell us plainly.”

25 Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in My Father’s name, they bear witness of Me. 26 But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep, as I said to you.[b] 27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. 28 And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand. 30 I and My Father are one.”

Why didn’t they believe? Because they were NOT of the sheep. Then Christ goes on to explain that all his sheep know his voice and will finally follow and believe and not only that but He will not lose ANY of his sheep and gives then ETERNAL life not temporary life.

We see here Total Depravity (they can’t believe because they are not sheep) Unconditional Election (he knows the sheep by name) Limited Atonement (Christ died for sheep only) Effectual Grace ( all his sheep WILL believe and follow His voice) and Perseverance of the Saints (He will lose NONE of his sheep but gives them ETERNAL LIFE)

Doctrines of Grace in a nutshell

Praise God!!!!


“Fourth, if election is from foreseen faith, God would not have elected man, but rather man would have elected God, and so predestination should rather be called postdestination; the first cause would be made the second, and God would depend of man (the falsity of which, both the thing itself exclaims and Christ expressly testifies: “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you,” (Jn. 15:16).

Francis Turretin, Institutes of elenctic theology, trans. G. M. Giger, ed. J. T. Dennison (1679; 3 vols, Philipsburgh, 1992), i, 361.

When I engage in discussion with other brothers and sisters in the faith reguarding the Doctrines of Grace aka the Five Points of Calvinism or about the Absolute Sovereignty of God I get one specific question that seems to concern non-Calvnists non-Reformed folks and with good reason. The question usually goes like this “Ricky, are Arminians or non-Calvinist even Christians?”. Well, my usual response is, of course they are. All those who have put their faith in Christ alone for their salvation have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit and are sealed with the promise. But, it is a little deeper than that. I do not affirm that Arminians or non-Calvinist are lost as do many if not most Hyper-Calvinist but rather I affirm with the rest of orthodox Reformed teachers that the problem is that Arminians have inconsistent bad theology and are saved in spite of that and this is usually the case. I find, in my many encounters with Arminians, that they really do not understand what they believe most, Arminians are inconsistent, and they don’t really believe what they say. For example, they pray and plead with God to save their family memebers and friends, they pray like Calvinist, How? you may be asking yourself, because God has no power (or right) to violate mans “free” will according to Arminianism. But most Arminians, the ones that are saved, know in their heart that salvation IS all the work of God and IS all by grace. So they pray and plead for God to save sinners! Their true theology comes out in their prayers and I would argue even in their sermons, even if they don’t want to admit it.

Most Arminians agree with Calvinist and affirm that salvation is all of Christ and that faith is the only instrument by which we receive Christ. Most Arminians I dialogue with will clearly acknowledge that they have no hope except in the mercy of Jesus Christ alone. Here is the bottom line Saints, as long as all their trust is in Christ alone and they see faith as nothing more than an instrument to receive Him, then it is more than likely that they are saved and we should be gracious and merciful in thinking that they are. Further, many Christians do not even know what Arminianism nor Calvinism is to begin with but nevertheless believe is grace alone through faith alone by Christ alone.

On the other hand those non-Calvinists who are pure Pelagians and or deny that salvation is of grace alone and believe that salvation has to be earned via your own works and your own righteousness as Rome teaches then I must highly question their salvation and preach to them the true Gospel of Jesus Christ, Sola Fide.

I leave you with these quotes of one who was one of the most vigourous defenders of Calvinism and proclaimed it to be the essence of the Gospel itself and taught passionately against Arminianism, the Prince of Preachers Charles Spurgeon to confirm my position and the position of many other reguarding this issue.

“A man may be evidently of God’s chosen family, and yet though elected, may not believe in the doctrine of election. I hold there are many savingly called, who do not believe in effectual calling, and that there are a great many who persevere to the end, who do not believe the doctrine of final perseverance. We do hope that the hearts of many are a great deal better than their heads. We do not set their fallacies down to any willful opposition to the truth as it is in Jesus, but simply to an error in their judgments, which we pray God to correct. We hope that if they think us mistaken too, they will reciprocate the same Christian courtesy; and when we meet around the cross, we hope that we shall ever feel that we are one in Christ Jesus.” ~ C.H. Spurgeon

“Far be it from me to imagine that Zion contains none but Calvinistic Christians within her walls, or that there are none saved who do not hold our views.” ~ C.H. Spurgeon