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Arminianism vs. Calvinism Controversy 3 of 5


Bible knowledge is a tool not a trophy


(Continued from Arminianism vs. Calvinism Controversy page 2)


The first letters, the T of TULIP and the D of DAISY were discussed in part 2 of this article.

Calvin’s TULIP and DAISY

The acronym TULIP stands for the five pillars of Calvinism:


T

Total depravity of man (man is totally unable to love God)

U

Unconditional election (God chooses whom He wishes)

L

Limited atonement (Christ died only for the elect)

I

Irresistible grace (those God chooses cannot resist the calling)

P

Perseverance of the saints (those God chose, God is faithful to keep until the end)


Then there is the Calvinist’s version of the Arminianist view, the DAISY:


D

Diminished Depravity (Free Will or Human Ability)

A

Abolition of true Grace (election is conditional)

I

Impersonal Atonement (Universal Redemption or General Atonement)

S

Sovereignty of the sinner (man’s will to turn away from God)

Y

Yielding eternal uncertainty (God doesn’t preserve us)


The Calvinist replies to the Arminianist with:

U

Unconditional election (God chooses whom He wishes)


Jesus said in John 15:16, “You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that You should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever You shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.”


Paul wrote in Ephesians 1:3-6, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.”


The Arminianist’s answer is:

A

Abolition of the Calvinist’s concept of Grace (Christ died only for those God chooses)


Jesus words in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”


Jesus said he came to save the world (John 12:47).


Paul, preaching in Athens said, in Acts 17:30, “And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commands all men every where to repent.”


Paul wrote in Romans 5:18, “Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.”


Knowledge of God is not limited to a limited number of Calvinists, but is universal in all cultures. When the first missionaries arrived in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, and began preaching the Gospel, the Zulu people said, “Oh, you mean Unkulunkulu.” God, in Zulu is still Unkulunkulu. The difference the Gospel makes, is that we are in a personal relationship with our Creator.




                                        



The Calvinist counters with:

L

Limited atonement (Christ died only for the elect)

Jesus says in John 10:14-15, “I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. As the Father knows me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.”


And especially the prayer before the crucifixion, in John 17:17-21, “Sanctify them through Your truth: Your word is truth. As your have sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; that they all may be one; as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that you have sent me.


The Arminianist answers with a verse within the same context to illustrate:

I

Impersonal Atonement (Universal Redemption or General Atonement)

The Apostle John in 1 John 2:2 wrote, “And he is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.”


Paul, writing to the Corinthians, 2Co 5:14-15, “For the love of Christ constrains us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead: And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.”


Paul wrote to the Romans, Romans 5:6-8 “For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commend his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.


And verse 18, “Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.”


Maybe Calvin should have a word here. Referring to the Marcionites, who taught that the body, which Christ assumed, was unsubstantial, Calvin quotes Paul, “As by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin – even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.” (Rom. 5:12, 18).


In “Institutes of the Christian Religion,” in the 2nd book, Chapter 13 Calvin wrote, “Luke goes still farther, showing that the salvation brought by Christ is common to the whole human race, in asmuch as Christ, the author of salvation, is descended from Adam, the common father of us all.” (my emphasis)


The Calvinist Arminianist debate Continues on page 4 with the I and S TULIP and DAISY petals





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