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30 October, 2007 / theexpositor

The Five Points of Free Will…does God help those who help themselves?

from CamponThis

AND THE ANSWER IS? … No. He helps those who can’t help themselves – that’s what grace is all about.

“The reason that all five points are false, is that they all depict fallen man as being “in cooperation” with God for salvation; and more importantly, make man the sovereign over his eternal destiny ultimately by the act of his own free will; while the Dread Sovereign of Heaven sits as a suitor in waiting to see what man may decide – “will he accept Me or reject Me?” This reasoning is not only aberrant, but absurd. It is, however, utterly consistent with the sinful nature of man who is always trying to diminish God and His glory while elevating himself as not being totally depraved. Scripture is so clear, beloved: “salvation is of the Lord.””

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  1. Pastor Warren / Nov 5 2007 20 59

    Certainly by tagging this with Arminianism you are not implying that Arminian or more modern Wesleyian theology consider man as able to initiate his or her own salvation. Camp is consistently wrong in his emotional caricature of the biblical position of Arminius and this rhetoric is no different. Or, is this your understanding of reformation theology as well?

  2. theexpositor / Nov 6 2007 3 46

    Pastor Warren,

    Are you saying that you firmly believe that the Arminian position is that salvation is the sole work of God and that classic Arminianism does not insist that God cannot save man until man allows the Lord to do so?

    Allow me to quote here John MacArthur, and I agree with him,

    “John Calvin rightly interpreted the Bible to teach that man is totally depraved. What that means, is that, not every human being is as sinful as he could be or she could be, but that every human being is sinful to the point that they’re incapable of altering their condition. That is to say, total depravity means you can’t do anything to save yourself. You can’t even make a right choice. You can’t awaken your spiritual deadness. You can’t give life where there is death. You can’t come to a right conclusion on your own. Total depravity means that everyone, is by virtue of their own will and their own power and their own choices, incapable of redemption. That’s total depravity.

    Arminius would say–Arminian theology, Palagian theology, as it’s also called–would say “man is capable.” That while man is, in the general sense, a sinner, he has capacities within himself to choose to be saved. That is the debate. I don’t think that’s biblical. I think we are dead in trespasses and sin, and dead people don’t make choices. Dead people can’t make themselves alive. So, I think there is a clear distinction there.”

  3. Pastor Warren / Nov 6 2007 14 42

    Brother – Unless shown otherwise, Arminian theology never states any position other than that salvation is wholly of God. Must humankind receive this grace? The Bible unequivocally states this truth. Stating it as you do with a permissive connotation is a false dilemma not present in the Scriptures and generates nothing but rancor within the body. Certainly you didn’t mean it that way? ;-}

    As for Pastor MacArthur’s quote, since you did not say from where it was drawn I can’t verify it’s complete meaning. No evaluation of Pelagianism and Arminianism would equate the two. Pelagius was clearly heretical in his understanding. Arminius, tutored by Beza was not. To say that Pelagianism is just another term for Arminianism demonstrates either a) a faulaty understanding of the two theolgical systems or b)intellectual dishonesty. I don’t believe Pastor MacArthur is guilty of either one of those so what do you think it might be?

  4. theexpositor / Nov 7 2007 2 59

    Forgive me for not giving the source of MacArthurs comments. You can find it here

  5. Shawna / Dec 1 2007 5 03

    God provided a Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, told Adam and Eve not to eat of it, then left them alone, granting them dominion over all of the Earth. He gave them the choice to eat fruit and become dead to Him, but would not give them a choice in being brought back into life with Him? The Word does clearly indicate that salvation is provided for as many as would believe, but does say IF you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved. IF… and if not? God just lets ya go, cause He already knows you’ll never choose Him anyway? Hmm… He’ll never leave you nor forsake you…. This whole idea of Arminianism vs. Calvinism strikes me a whole lot more like Satan vs. God, and as long as everyone is looking at the technicalities, some are dying outside of God’s love and grace. What gets more people saved, arguing, or telling people God loves ’em? I’m gonna go with the love…

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