by Jeff Hagan, DCE, DMin, (ThD)

INTRODUCTION:
I know some of you have heard it, perhaps some of you have even said it, “Calvinism is a doctrine from hell.” Or, it comes in other forms as well, “Calvinism is a blasphemous heresy,” “TULIP is an apostate teaching,” “I don’t follow anyone but Christ and the Bible,” or many other variations of these. Anyone who truly understands the Doctrines of Grace knows how foolish these comments are. It is clear that those who make such proclamations don’t know their Bible nor do they have any sort of a grasp on Calvinism.

In one debate I took part in the other party referred to Calvinism as the “doctrine of devils.” I calmly mentioned how her statement was inaccurate and explained that both views (Calvinism and Arminianism) can be supported by the use of Scripture and fall within the pales of Christian orthodoxy. Don’t get me wrong, I fully adhere to Calvinism and debate against Arminianism, but to make such a bold claim as one of them being the “doctrine of devils” is far beyond the bounds I’m willing to go (nor should anyone go). There are other belief systems that are heretical, apostate, and even “of the devil,” but Calvinism and Arminianism are not among them.

While searching the internet the other day I came across the website of a self-proclaimed street evangelist. He described his ministry as primarily street preaching and fighting the cultic doctrines that lead to hell which included Roman Catholicism, Seventh Day Adventism, Islam, Calvinism, and some others. He even used the quote attributed to St. Augustine, “In essentials, unity. In non-essentials, liberty. In all things, charity.” Directly after this quote he wrote “unless of course you follow doctrines that lead to hell” and then listed the above religious groups mentioned above. Another thing I read somewhere on his site was one of the quotes I mentioned in the first paragraph, he had written something along the lines of, “I don’t follow anyone but Christ and the teachings of His Word.” Of course the implication is obvious, if one believes the Doctrines of Grace to be a legitimate summary of accurate theology, then we “follow Calvin and not Christ” and his teachings are not biblical. Of course we know this to be false.

After being reminded of all of these ridiculous claims against Calvinism, and seeing the venom with which they are spewed, I decided I needed to lay out an explanation of Calvinism, primarily using Scripture, so it can be seen by those ignorant of the system that it is not only Biblical, but it is the most accurate understanding of Scripture available. Well, as is usually the case for authors, whenever you think you have an original idea you research it and almost always discover someone has thought of it before you, usually several people. So, what I did for this article was rely heavily on a piece I came across on monergism.org. Much of it came from that article but I edited and paraphrased some of it, and I condensed it dramatically as it was quite lengthy. I apologize to those of you who may be interested in looking it up online to read the complete original version, but I cannot recall the name of the author.

What I’m going to do is list each of the terms individually for the TULIP acronym and then give a very brief explanation of them. I will then quote a few Scriptures regarding the issue and list many others as reference for one to study and look up on their own. The ultimate goal is to make it clear that the beliefs of Calvinism are not only Biblical, but found extensively throughout Scripture. Hopefully the people who need to read this will stumble across it.

TOTAL DEPRAVITY:
Man is born a sinner as a result of his relationship with Adam. We are rotten to the core, but that does not mean we are always as bad as we could be.

PSALM 51:5 – “Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me” (KJV).

ROMANS 5:18-19 – “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. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous” (KJV).

(See also Ps. 58:3, et. al.)

Since the above is true, man is unable to:

-do anything good in his own power
PROVERBS 20:9, “Who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin?” (KJV).

ECCLESIASTES 7:20, “For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not” (KJV).

ROMANS 3:9-12, “What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin;As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one” (KJV).

1 JOHN 1:8, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us” (KJV).

(See also Gen. 6:5; Job 15:14-16; Ps. 130:3; 143:2; Isa. 64:6; Jer. 13:23; John 3:19; Js. 3:8)

-believe in God (or come to Him)
JOHN 6:44, “No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day” (KJV).

JOHN 10:26, “But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you” (KJV).

(See also John 6:65; 8:43-45; 12:37-41)

-understand the truth
1 CORINTHIANS 2:14, “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (KJV).

(See also John 14:17)

-to seek God
ROMANS 3:10-11, “as it is written: ‘None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God” (ESV).

Additionally, man is dead in sins: “And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience—among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind” (Ephesians 2:1-3, ESV).

He is blind and his heart is corrupt: “The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Genesis 6:5, ESV).

“For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God” (Romans 8:7-8, ESV).

(See also Gen. 8:21; Eccl. 9:3; Jer. 17:9; Mark 7:21-23; John 3:19-21; Eph. 4:17-19; 5:8)

He is a slave to sin and Satan: “Jesus answered them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin’” (John 8:34, ESV).

“You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies” (John 8:44, ESV).

(See also Rom. 6:20; 2 Tim. 2:25-26; Titus 3:3; 1 John 5:19)

And he is able to act freely according to his nature, but his nature is completely evil: “Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? There is not one” (Job 14:4, ESV).

“Let no one say when he is tempted, ‘I am being tempted by God,’ for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire” (James 1:13-14).

(See also Matt. 7:16-18; 12:33; Mark 7:21-23)

UNCONDITIONAL ELECTION:
Let’s start this one off with the fact that God is absolutely sovereign.
EXODUS 15:18 – “The Lord will reign forever and ever” (ESV).

1 CHRONICLES 29:11-12 – “Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is yours. Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all. Both riches and honor come from you, and you rule over all. In your hand are power and might, and in your hand it is to make great and to give strength to all” (ESV).

(See also 2 Chron. 20:6 and Ps. 22:8)

-God exercises His sovereignty in actively ordaining everything
DEUTERONOMY 32:39 – “‘See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god beside me; I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand” (ESV).

PSALM 33:11 – “The counsel of the Lord stands forever, the plans of his heart to all generations” (ESV).

ISAIAH 14:24 – “The Lord of hosts has sworn: “As I have planned, so shall it be, and as I have purposed, so shall it stand,” (ESV).

EPHESIANS1:11 – “In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will,” (ESV).

(See also 1 Sam. 2:6-8; Job 9:12; 12:6-10; Ps. 115:3; 135:6; Isa. 45:7; Acts 15:18)

This includes so-called “chance” – “The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord” (Prov. 16:33, ESV).
(See also 1 Kings 22:20, 34, 37)

It also includes evil actions of men – “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today” (Genesis 5:20).

EXODUS 4:21 – “And the Lord said to Moses, “When you go back to Egypt, see that you do before Pharaoh all the miracles that I have put in your power. But I will harden his heart, so that he will not let the people go” (ESV).

AMOS 3:6 – “Is a trumpet blown in a city, and the people are not afraid? Does disaster come to a city, unless the Lord has done it?” (ESV)

ACTS 2:22-23 – “’Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs that God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know—this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men’”(ESV).

(See also Gen. 45:5; Jdg. 14:1-4; Ps. 76:10; Prov. 16:4; Isa. 44:28; Acts4:27-28)

It even includes the actions of demons – “Now the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and a harmful spirit from the Lord tormented him. And Saul’s servants said to him, ‘Behold now, a harmful spirit from God is tormenting you. Let our lord now command your servants who are before you to seek out a man who is skillful in playing the lyre, and when the harmful spirit from God is upon you, he will play it, and you will be well’” (1 Samuel 16:14-16, ESV).

(See also 1 Kings 22:19-23; 1 Chron. 21:11 and 2 Sam. 24:1)

It includes the good actions of men – “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10, ESV).

(See also John 15:16 and Phi 2:12-13)

It includes the actions of angels – “Bless the Lord, O you his angels, you mighty ones who do his word, obeying the voice of his word!” (Psalm 103:20, ESV).

(See also Psalm 104:4)

Something we often don’t consider, it also includes the actions of animals -“You shall drink from the brook, and I have commanded the ravens to feed you there” (1 Kings 17:4).

EZEKIEL 32:4 – “And I will cast you on the ground; on the open field I will fling you, and will cause all the birds of the heavens to settle on you, and I will gorge the beasts of the whole earth with you” (ESV).

(See also Num. 22:28; Ps. 29:9; Jere. 8:7; Dan. 6:22)

And last for this subsection, it includes the functioning of all creation- “He set the earth on its foundations, so that it should never be moved. You covered it with the deep as with a garment; the waters stood above the mountains. At your rebuke they fled; at the sound of your thunder they took to flight. The mountains rose, the valleys sank down to the place that you appointed for them. You set a boundary that they may not pass, so that they might not again cover the earth.You make springs gush forth in the valleys; they flow between the hills;” (Psalm 104:5-10).

PSALM 104:13-14– “From your lofty abode you water the mountains; the earth is satisfied with the fruit of your work.You cause the grass to grow for the livestock and plants for man to cultivate, that he may bring forth food from the earth” (ESV).

(See also Gen. 8:22; Ps. 104:19-20; Mark 4:39)

-Man is not to second guess God’s sovereign acts

ISAIAH 29:16 – “You turn things upside down! Shall the potter be regarded as the clay, that the thing made should say of its maker, ‘He did not make me’; or the thing formed say of him who formed it, ‘He has no understanding’?” (ESV).

ROMANS 9:19-24 – “You will say to me then, ‘Why does he still find fault? For who can resist his will?’ But who are you, O man, to answer back to God? Will what is molded say to its molder, ‘Why have you made me like this?’ Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for dishonorable use? What if God, desiring to show his wrath and to make known his power, has endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction, in order to make known the riches of his glory for vessels of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory—even us whom he has called, not from the Jews only but also from the Gentiles?” (ESV).

(See also Job 33:12-13; Isa. 45:9-10; Matt. 20:1-16)

God elects, or predestines the following:

His angels – “In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus and of the elect angels I charge you to keep these rules without prejudging, doing nothing from partiality” (1 Timothy 5:21, ESV).

His peculiar people, Israel – “For you are a people holy to the Lord your God. The Lord your God has chosen you to be a people for his treasured possession, out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth. It was not because you were more in number than any other people that the Lord set his love on you and chose you, for you were the fewest of all peoples, but it is because the Lord loves you and is keeping the oath that he swore to your fathers, that the Lord has brought you out with a mighty hand and redeemed you from the house of slavery, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt” (Deuteronomy 7:6-8, ESV).

(See also Exod. 6:7; Deut. 10:14-15; Ps. 33:12; Isa. 43:20-21)

Specific individuals to salvation – “Blessed is the one you choose and bring near, to dwell in your courts! We shall be satisfied with the goodness of your house, the holiness of your temple!” (Psalm 65:4,ESV).

JOHN 6:37 – “All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out” (ESV).

JOHN 15:16a – “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you…” (ESV).

ROMANS 8:28-30 – “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified” (ESV).

EPHESIANS 1:3-6 – “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved” (ESV).

(See also Matt. 24:24; Acts 13:48; Rom. 9:10-24; 11:5-7; Eph. 1:11-12; 1Thess. 1:4; 5:9; 2 Thess. 2:13-14)

And mysteriously, individuals to condemnation – “For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, ‘For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.’ So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he hardens whomever he wills” (Romans 9:17-18, ESV).

(See also Exod. 4:21; Rom. 9:13, 21-22; 1 Pet. 2:8)

What motivates God in election?

His own good pleasure – “he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will,” (Ephesians 1:5, ESV).

2 TIMOTHY 1:9 – “who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began,” (ESV).

Display His glory – “I will say to the north, Give up, and to the south, Do not withhold; bring my sons from afar and my daughters from the end of the earth, everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made” (Isaiah 43:6-7, ESV).

EPHESIANS 2:4-7 – “But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus” (ESV).

(See also Rom. 9:22-24; and 1 Cor. 1:27-31)

His special love – “’For you are a people holy to the Lord your God.The Lord your God has chosen you to be a people for his treasured possession, out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth. It was not because you were more in number than any other people that the Lord set his love on you and chose you, for you were the fewest of all peoples, but it is because the Lord loves you and is keeping the oath that he swore to your fathers, that the Lord has brought you out with a mighty hand and redeemed you from the house of slavery, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt’” (Deuteronomy 6:7-8, ESV).

(See also 2 Thess. 2:13, et. al.)

LIMITED ATONEMENT
God purposed to redeem a specific people and not others – “For many are called, but few are chosen” (Matthew 22:14, ESV).

1 PETER 2:9 – “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light” (ESV).

(See also 1 Chron. 17:20-21)

It is for these specific people that Christ died for – “She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save HIS people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21, ESV, emphasis added).

ACTS 20:28 – “Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock,in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the CHURCH of God, which he obtained with his own blood” (ESV, emphasis added).

HEBREWS 9:15 – “Therefore he is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance, since a death has occurred that redeems them from the transgressions committed under the first covenant” (ESV).

(See also Isa. 53:10-11; John 6:35-40; 10:3-4, 11, 14-15; Eph. 5:25)

It is for these in particular that Christ intercedes – “When Jesus had spoken these words, he lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, ‘Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you, since you have given him authority over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him” (John 17:1-2, ESV).

(See also John 17:6-12, 20-21, 24-26; Rom. 8:34)

The people Christ intercedes for are the same ones that he died for – “he entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption” (Hebrews 9:12, ESV). Just a reminder that in context entering the holy place is for the purpose of intercession.

(See also Heb. 7:24-27; 9:24-28; and a solid study of Heb. 7-10)

Christ’s atonement is effective to justify – “Out of the anguish of his soul he shall see and be satisfied; by his knowledge shall the righteous one, my servant, make many to be accounted righteous, and he shall bear their INIQUITIES” (Isaiah 53:11, ESV, emphasis added).

(See also Rom. 8:34)

His atonement is effective to redeem and cleanse from sin – “who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works” (Titus 2:;14, ESV).

(See also Eph. 5:25-27)

It is effective to propitiate the Father – “In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (1 John 4:10, ESV).

(See also 1 John 2:2)

It is effective to raise to new life – “For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring usto God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit,” (1 Peter 3:18, ESV).

(See also 2 Cor. 5:14-15)

Those whom God purposed to redeem are made up of those that believe in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life” (ESV).

These people are from every nation (Revelation 5:9)

They are from every class – “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3:28).

(See also 1 Tim. 2:1-6)

Christ’s redeeming work is commonly spoken of using terms like “all,” “world,” etc. (John 1:29; Titus 2:11-14).

2 PETER 3:9 – “The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance” (ESV). Notice here the wishing, or desiring in some translations, is limited to the “you” and the “you” is the church, Peter was writing to Christians).

(See also 1 John 2:2; 11:51-52)

It’s very important to keep in mind that the word “world” is often times used in reference to “many,” or “all of a set.” The word for world is “kosmos” and has five or so uses in the Bible. (See A.W. Pink’s online article, “Kosmos.”)

Examples of the word “all” being used as all of a set, or even many representatives of a set – “’All things are lawful for me,’ but not all things are helpful. ‘All things are lawful for me,” but I will not be dominated by anything’” (1 Corinthians 6:12, ESV).

1 CORINTHIANS 15:22 – “For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive” (ESV).

MATTHEW 2:3 – “When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him;” (ESV).

JOHN 4:29 – “Come, see a man who told me all that I ever did. Can this be the Christ?” (ESV).

(See also Matt. 10:22; Acts 10:39; 17:21; 21:28; 26:4)

Examples indicating all “classes” or “nations,” not all individuals -“And in the last days it shall be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams;” (Acts 2:17, ESV).

(See also Matt. 5:11; Acts 10:12)

Examples of “world” being used in the sense of “many,” or “all of a set” – “In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria” (Luke 2:1-2, ESV).

JOHN 12:19 – “So the Pharisees said to one another, ‘You see that you are gaining nothing. Look, the world has gone after him’” (ESV).

(See also John 6:33; Acts 19:27; Rom. 1:8)

Following are some additional points as to why the atonement of Christ is NOT for all the sins of all people:

-God punishes people in hell, which would be unjust if their sins were atoned for – “And if your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than with two hands to go to hell, to the unquenchable fire” (Mark 9:43, ESV, et. al.).

-If one says, “their sins are atoned for, but that atonement is not applied to them because of unbelief,” they are failing to recognize that unbelief itself is a sin and therefore should be atoned for -“Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God” (Hebrews 3:12, ESV, et. al.).

-God holds an eternal wrath against people, which by definition means that his wrath against them has not been propitiated, or appeased – “since indeed God considers it just to repay with affliction those who afflict you, and to grant relief to you who are afflicted as well as to us, when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might,” (2 Thessalonians 1:6-9, ESV).

(See also 1 Thess. 2:16)

Following are purposes of Christ’s death in addition to atonement:

-to make a public display of demons (Col. 2:13-15)

-to rule over everyone (Rom. 14:9)

-to redeem creation (Isa. 35:1-4; Rom. 8:20-23)

-to lay the foundation for an authentic gospel call (John 6:39-40; 7:37-38)

-to provide temporal mercies for those who are not elect: “so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sunrise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust” (Matthew 5:45, ESV).

1 TIMOTHY 4:10 – “For to this end we toil and strive, because we have our hope set on the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially of those who believe” (ESV).

IRRESISTIBLE GRACE
Both faith and repentance (along with regeneration, which is the giving of a new heart which is able to produce them) are themselves gifts from God

A New Heart (Regeneration) – “And the Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your offspring, so that you will love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live” (Deuteronomy 30:6, ESV).

(See also Ezek. 11:19; 36:26-27)

Faith- “John answered, ‘A person cannot receive even one thing unless it is given him from heaven’” (John 3:27, ESV).

ACTS 16:14 – “One who heard us was a woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a seller of purple goods, who was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was said by Paul” (ESV).

EPHESIANS 2:8-10 – “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them” (ESV).

(See also John 6:63-65; Phi. 1:29; 2 Pet. 1:1; Acts 18:27)

And Repentance – “When they heard these things they fell silent. And they glorified God, saying, ‘Then to the Gentiles also God has granted repentance that leads to life’” (Acts 11:18, ESV).

(See also Acts 5:3; 2 Tim. 2:25-26; 1 Cor. 4:7)

The Father places His Word on His people’s hearts (Jer. 31:33; 32:40; Matt. 16:15-17; Luke 10:21; John 6:45; 2 Cor. 4:6). Salvation starts when God gives new life to a heart (regeneration) which was previously dead, which gives it the ability to exercise faith (1 John 5:1; Ezek. 37:3-6, 11-14; John 1:11-13; 3:3-8; 5:21; Eph. 2:1-5; James 1:18; 1 Pet. 1:3; 1 John 2:29). Offers of grace in the outward gospel call can be resisted by men who do not have this new heart (Acts 17:32-33). As a matter of fact, offers of grace will always be resisted by men without a new heart. This relates back to Total Depravity. (John 10:24-26; 12:37-40). But there are some that God draws to Himself (Psa. 65:4; 110:3; John 6:37-40; Rom. 9:15).

PERSEVERANCE OF THE SAINTS
What God starts He brings to completion – “I perceived that whatever God does endures forever; nothing can be added to it, nor anything taken from it. God has done it, so that people fear before him” (Ecclesiastes 3:14, ESV).

ROMANS 11:29 – “For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable” (ESV).

(See also Psa. 138:8; Isa. 46:4; Jere. 32:40; Phi. 1:6; 2 Tim. 4:18)

No one that God has called to Christ will be lost – “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand” (John 10:27-29, ESV).

ROMANS 8:35-39 – “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, ‘For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord’” (ESV).

(See also John 6:39-40; Rom. 8:28-31; Heb. 7:25; 10:14)

God’s perseverance of the saints in not separate form their continuation in the faith, however, it is God who sanctifies us and gives us the power causing us to persevere – “Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14, ESV).

1 CORINTHIANS 6:11 – “And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God” (ESV).

1 CORINTHIANS 15:10 – “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me” (ESV).

PHILIPPIANS 2:12-13 – “Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.

(See also 1 Cor. 6:9-10; Gal. 5:19-21; Eph. 5:5; Heb. 3:14; 6:4-6; 10:26-27; Rev. 21:7-8; 22:14-15; John 15:16; 1 Cor. 1:30-31; 12:3; Gal. 3:1-6; Eph. 2:10; 1 Thess. 5:23-24; Heb. 13:20-21; 1 John 2:20; Jude 1:24-25).

Source: FaithWriters.com

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Filed under: Apologetics

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