Do Arminians Deny
God’s Grace?



















First, consider the manner of grace taught in Calvinism, and then in Arminianism.

Calvinism is termed the Doctrines of Grace, so named for its several elements of grace, in which Elective Grace predetermines Regenerative Grace resulting in Persevering Grace.

Calvins Calvinism taught that God has an eternal people that “always” belonged to Him, that is, an eternal flock of sheep, being those who were allegedly, eternally “hiddenin Him, having been eternally chosen “in Himself,” in that while being far off, God held them “in secret” as “His own”:

John Calvin writes: “...God has chosen to salvation those whom He pleased, and has rejected the others, without our knowing why, except that its reason is hidden in His eternal counsel.”  (Concerning the Eternal Predestination of God, p.53, emphasis mine)

John Calvin adds:All are not created on equal terms, but some are preordained to eternal life, others to eternal damnation; and, accordingly, as each has been created for one or other of these ends, we say that he has been predestinated to life or to death.” (Institutes of Christian Religion: Book 3, Chapter 21, Section 5, emphasis mine)

Calvin writes: “First he points out the eternity of election, and then how we should think of it. Christ says that the elect always belonged to God. God therefore distinguishes them from the reprobate, not by faith, nor by any merit, but by pure grace; for while they are far away from him, he regards them in secret as his own.” (John: Calvin, The Crossway Classic Commentaries, p.393, emphasis mine)

John Calvin writes: “Hence Augustine, having treated of the elect, and taught that their salvation reposes in the faithful custody of God so that none perishes, continues: The rest of mortal men who are not of this number, but rather taken out of the common mass and made vessels of wrath, are born for the use of the elect.” (Concerning the Eternal Predestination of God, p.107, emphasis mine)

While most Calvinists sum up Calvinistic Election in two words: The Elect, it is better summed up in three words: In The Father. Putting them together, you have: The Elect In the Father. While the Bible often speaks of being in Christ, Calvinism is essentially being in the Father, and most Calvinists are unfamiliar with the fact that there even is such a concept of being in the Father.

1st John 2:24
If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father.

To the Calvinist, “the elect” eternally reside in the Father by what is termed, sovereign Elective Grace, and are therefore, on that basis, chosen to become in the Son and given to Him at the foreordained time, by means of irresistible Regenerative Grace, whereby the elect in the Father are involuntarily made preemptively Born Again with a brand new heart in order to irresistibly repent, believe and become saved.

Arminianism has a different take on grace.

4-Point Calvinist, Hal Lindsey, states:Grace is all that God set Himself to give us on the basis of Jesus dying in our place and paying for our sins.” (Gospel of John, emphasis mine)

That is a perfectly acceptable definition.

One devotional states:Christ sacrificed His life on the cross so that we might have eternal life. This gift, freely given from God’s only begotten Son, is the priceless possession of everyone who accepts Him as Lord and Savior. We return our Savior’s love by welcoming Him into our hearts and sharing His message and His love. When we do so, we are blessed here on earth and throughout all eternity.”  (Journey with God: For Men, emphasis mine)

One member of The Society of Evangelical Arminians explains:I think we have misconstrued what grace is. Grace is God’s favor. We often consider the acts of God that result from that favor as ‘his grace,’ but it is simply God turning towards us and encounter us in a real and tangible way. God’s grace is manifest in many ways, but these actions are a result of his gracious mercy. Grace is often seen as the antithesis of law, but the Law was given as an act of grace.” (SEA)

Romans 4:16
For this reason it is by faith, in order that it may be in accordance with grace.





















































































Calvinist, Paul Washer, states: “There is an illustration of what it means to be cursed that I have used for years. I can’t find another that would be better. But it is this. To say someone is under the curse of the law, the curse of God because of their sin is to say this. That the last thing the accursed person will hear when they take their first step into hell is all of creation standing to its feet and applauding God because God has rid the earth of them.” (The Cost of Not Following Christ, 24:27 - 25:00 on the video, emphasis mine)


























(1) Paul Washer went on to link his assessment to “the Gospel,” and yet no passage in the Bible, specifically regarding “the Gospel,” ever says what he is saying. The Bible defines the Gospel as the message of salvation to the lost, and you can see actual examples of the presentation of the Gospel at Acts 17:22-34 and at 1st Corinthians 15:1-11. Sometimes Calvinists will try to give the darkest message possible, in order to prove heightened spirituality and devotion, and that appears to be what happened here. There is milk and there is meat. One only needs to see the Bible for how it self-defines the Gospel. (2) Paul Washer fails to understand the nature of Hell. Hell is not just for the sins of man. Otherwise, Jesus would have been wrong to say that it would be more tolerable on Judgment Day for Sodom and Gomorrah, than for the unbelieving cities in Israel. (Compare with Matthew 11:21-24.) If it was just a matter of sin, then Sodom and Gomorrah were far more sinful. However, Jesus, who is the Judge in the after-life, says that the unbelieving cities in Israel would be held in greater contempt, because they had received more grace, and yet spurned it. (Compare with Luke 12:48.) So Washer is wrong to associate his views with the Gospel, and he is wrong about the nature of judgment itself. The greatest weight of judgment is the rejection of grace, that is, the very saving grace that Calvinists deny that God ever showed toward the [alleged] non-elect, by insisting that Jesus never  loved them and never died for them so that they might be saved. So it is Calvinism that is a theology that denies grace, or at least, the grace of God that extends as an offer to all people.

The Elective Grace of Arminianism is that whereas Calvinism bases election in the Father, Arminianism founds it in the Son, such that no one comes to the Father, but by the Son. (John 14:6) In other words, Arminianism teaches that you have the privilege of being chosen in the Father, that is, adopted into the family of the Father as a born again child of God on account of your identification with and your position in His Son, through faith in Him.

The Regenerative Grace of Arminianism is that upon being sealed in Christ by the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13), you receive a “new heart” and a “new spirit” (Ezekiel 36:26) in becoming a born again “new creature” in Christ. (2nd Corinthians 5:17)

The Persevering Grace of Arminianism is that upon becoming a new-born in Christ, you receive a measure of “grace” (Ephesians 4:7) and a measure of “faith.” (Romans 12:3) Additionally, for those who have become in Christ, primarily having been foreknown in Christ (Romans 8:28-29), as a member of the Body of Christ, having become “one spirit” with Him (1st Corinthians 6:17), God has predestined all that comes with being in His Son, which includes being conformed to the image of Christ, justified, glorified and given a wonderful purpose for your life (Romans 8:30), known as the “holy calling.” (2nd Timothy 1:9)

The Atoning Grace of Calvinism is that Jesus died only for those where were allegedly, eternally hidden in the Father, whereas the Atoning Grace of Arminianism is that Jesus is the propitiation for the sins of “the whole world.” (1st John 2:2)
Graces for the Unbeliever:


General Revelation Grace: The grace of General Revelation, in which the knowledge of God is revealed in the Heavens, as per Romans 1:20.

Restraining Grace: The grace of restraint so that mankind is not utterly evil, as in completely demonic, although sin leads mankind toward this direction.

Caring Grace: The grace of God’s providential care for all humanity (i.e. the rain, as per Matthew 5:45).

Loving Grace: The grace of God’s greatest gift, His own Son, as per John 3:16 and Romans 8:32.

Atoning Grace: The grace of Calvary in which Jesus took upon Himself, the sin of all humanity, as per John 1:29.

Convicting Grace: The grace of the Holy Spirit’s conviction of sin according to John 16:8, by convicting the world of its sin, in order to drive it towards repentance.

Drawing Grace: The grace of Jesus’ post-Calvary draw according to John 12:32.

Goading Grace: The grace of the Holy Spirit which goads the lost, in which it is hard to resist, as per Acts 26:14.
 
Additional Graces for the Believer:

Indwelling Grace: The grace of God’s Spirit, indwelling each believer, as per 1Cor 3:16 and John 14:23.

Serving Grace: The grace of a serving gift for each believer, in which each believer is gifted for a special role and vocation in the body of Christ.

Limiting & Provisional Grace: The grace of limiting the scope of temptations, and providing a “way of escape,” as per 1Cor 10:13.

Resurrection Grace: The grace of an immortal body awaiting each believer in Christ, as per 1Cor 15:53.

Peaceful Grace: The grace of peace that Jesus provides the believer, as per John 14:27.

Protecting Grace: The grace of holding us in God’s care, as per John 10:28.

Abiding Grace: The grace of Jesus’ own presence, when two or more are gathered in His name, as per Matthew 18:20.

Returning Grace: The grace of Jesus’ promise to return to come and get us, as per John 14:18.
Question:  Do Arminians deny God’s grace?

Answer:  Arminians affirm the doctrine of Prevenient Grace, which essentially is the teaching that Jesus knocks, as per Revelation 3:20, and takes the initiative in seeking the lost, and freeing the depraved soul to receive God’s saving grace. Calvinists, on the other hand, insist that anything other than Irresistible Grace must necessarily lead to a works-based salvation and a complete denial of grace. However, to an Arminian, Calvinism is a theology of grace, but grace only for some people, as in, the Doctrines of Limited Grace, or grace-for-some-people.