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On Aminianism and Predestination

The teaching of Jesus as quoted by Apostle John in John 3:16 states, “…so that every one who believes in him should not perish but have eternal life” clearly emphasized that man has part in the salvation which Jesus Christ had accomplished. This was corroborated by Saint Paul in his letter to the Romans in chapter 10: 11 in which he pointed out from the scripture that “who ever believe in him shall not be disappointed. ” Referring to text he cited, Paul stated that the word ‘whoever’ “includes everyone, because there is no difference between Jews and Gentiles; God is the same Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him.

As the scripture says, “everyone who calls out to the Lord for help will be saved” (Romans 10: 12-13). In the light of these biblical passages, I am in favor of the doctrine of Arminianism regarding salvation. The Arminian doctrine held that “salvation is accomplished through combined efforts of God and man” (Steele & Thomas (1963, p. 19). According to Steele and Thomas (1963), God has provided salvation for everyone, but his provision becomes effective only for those who, of their own free will, choose to cooperate with Him and accept His offer of grace” (p.

19). The Arminian doctrine of salvation ‘for everyone’ holds more weight in light of the biblical passages above. The statements derived from these passages such as ‘everyone who believes in him will not perish (John 3:16),’ ‘who ever believe in him shall be saved (Romans 10: 11),’ and ‘all who call on the name of the Lord shall be saved’ (Romans 10: 12-13. ) clearly implied that the salvation which Jesus Christ has accomplished through his death on the cross was not limited only for selected people but for everyone.

This was confirmed by Apostle Peter in Acts chapter 10: 34-35 wherein Peter declared, “I now realized that it is true that God treats everyone on the same basis. Those who fear and do what is right are acceptable to him no matter what race they belong. ” While the Calvinist doctrine holds that salvation is accomplished by the almighty power of God through the death of Christ on the cross, it holds that the death of Christ was intended only for the elect.

That is, Christ atonement is limited only for those which God has chosen to be saved. While they may not be deserving of such favor, the salvation becomes grace as they have totally no part in it. The only thing they can do is to accept the salvation through having faith in Jesus. While this argument seemed very sound one, yet there are many passages both in the Old and New Testament that described God’s character as being fair to all his creatures contrary to the doctrine of selected few.

In Genesis chapter 7:1 God punished all his creatures except of Noah whom he found as the only man who does what is right. The passage implies that any one could have been saved from the great flood which God had sent as punishment for sins, had there was any one like Noah who were doing what was right in the sight of the Lord. This was also true in the case of Rahab the prostitute in Joshua 2: 8-13. Jericho was doomed to destruction and its people.

However, Rahab and all her family were saved from sure death on account of her faith in God. She was even incorporated into the congregation of Israel because of her faith. In Genesis 18: 16-33, Abraham pleads God for Sodom because God told him of his plan to destroy the city because of its wickedness. Nonetheless, God assured Abraham that even for the sake 10 righteous people; he would not destroy the city. Here God’s basis of salvation is righteousness based on doing what is right before the Lord.

That is, if one chooses to believe the Lord and do what pleases Him such as what Abraham did when he chose to obey God; God will spare the lives of many for his sake. Ruth the Moabite was another example that God saved everyone not on the basis of favoritism but on account of one’s faith in Him. The New Testament assertion that who ever believes in him, that all who call on the name of the Lord, and that everyone who believes in him, will be saved, were a very clear indication that salvation is for everyone but, a person has to respond to God’s offered salvation.

He or she must receive it. This was clearly illustrated by Jesus Christ himself in Revelations 3:20 where Jesus stated, “I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hear my voice and open the door, I will come into their house and eat with them, and they will eat with me. Reference Steele, D. N. & Thomas, C. C. The Five Points of Calvinism USA: The Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company

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