According to some Christian outlooks we were made for another world. Perhaps, rather, we were made for this world to recreate, reclaim, redeem, and renew unto God's future aspiration by the power of His Spirit. - R.E. Slater
Secularization theory has been massively falsified. We don't live in an age of secularity. We live in an age of explosive, pervasive religiosity... an age of religious pluralism. - Peter L. Berger
Exploring the edge of life and faith in a post-everything world. - Todd Littleton
I don't need another reason to believe, your love is all around for me to see. – anon
Thou art our need; and in giving us more of thyself thou givest us all. - Khalil Gibran, Prayer XXIII
Be careful what you pretend to be. You become what you pretend to be. - Kurt Vonnegut
Religious beliefs, far from being primary, are often shaped and adjusted by our social goals. - Jim Forest
People, even more than things, need to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone. – anon
Certainly God's love has made fools of us all. - R.E. Slater
An apocalyptic Christian faith doesn't wait for Jesus to come, but for Jesus to become in our midst. - R.E. Slater
Christian belief in God begins with the cross and resurrection of Jesus, not with rational apologetics. - Eberhard Jüngel, Jürgen Moltmann
Our knowledge of God is through the 'I-Thou' encounter, not in finding God at the end of a syllogism or argument. There is a grave danger in any Christian treatment of God as an object. The God of Jesus Christ and Scripture is irreducibly subject and never made as an object, a force, a power, or a principle that can be manipulated. - Emil Brunner
Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh means "I will be that who I have yet to become." - God (Ex 3.14)
Our job is to love others without stopping to inquire whether or not they are worthy. - Thomas Merton
The church is God's world-changing social experiment of bringing unlikes and differents to the Eucharist/Communion table to share life with one another as a new kind of family. When this happens we show to the world what love, justice, peace, reconciliation, and life together is designed by God to be. The church is God's show-and-tell for the world to see how God wants us to live as a blended, global, polypluralistic family united with one will, by one Lord, and baptized by one Spirit. – anon
The cross that is planted at the heart of the history of the world cannot be uprooted. - Jacques Ellul
The Unity in whose loving presence the universe unfolds is inside each person as a call to welcome the stranger, protect animals and the earth, respect the dignity of each person, think new thoughts, and help bring about ecological civilizations. - John Cobb & Farhan A. Shah
If you board the wrong train it is of no use running along the corridors of the train in the other direction. - Dietrich Bonhoeffer
God's justice is restorative rather than punitive; His discipline is merciful rather than punishing; His power is made perfect in weakness; and His grace is sufficient for all. – anon
Our little [biblical] systems have their day; they have their day and cease to be. They are but broken lights of Thee, and Thou, O God art more than they. - Alfred Lord Tennyson
We can’t control God; God is uncontrollable. God can’t control us; God’s love is uncontrolling! - Thomas Jay Oord
Life in perspective but always in process... as we are relational beings in process to one another so life events are in process in relation to each event... as God is to Self, is to world, is to us... like Father, like sons and daughters, like events... life in process yet always in perspective. - R.E. Slater

Monday, July 7, 2014

Common Questions and Misunderstandings about Classical Arminianism, Part 2

Arminianism FAQ 2 (Everything You Always Wanted to Know…)

by Roger Olson
July 7, 2014

FAQ: What’s the difference between Arminianism and Wesleyanism?

Answer (A): Not all Arminians are Wesleyans. Certainly Arminius wasn’t! He lived a century before Wesley. 

Free Will Baptists, many Pentecostals (e.g., Assemblies of God), and Restorationists (e.g., Churches of Christ/Independent Christians) are Arminians without being Wesleyans.

But all Wesleyans (that I know) are Arminians (although not all like that label).

Wesleyans ADD to Arminianism the idea of “Christian Perfection” (which different Wesleyans define differently). Non-Wesleyan Arminians do not believe in “entire sanctification.” (Although, interestingly, my own study of Arminius has led me to think he MAY have agreed with Wesley and Wesleyans about that.)

FAQ: Does Arminianism include belief in absolute free will? If so, how could God have inspired the authors of Scripture?

A: No, Arminianism does not (and never has) included belief in “absolute free will.” Not even God has absolute free will: "God’s will is governed by his character."

Arminianism focuses on sin and salvation. It says (with regard to free will) that the sinner’s will is bound to sin until freed by God’s prevenient grace (thus, “freed will,” not “free will!”).

Arminianism includes no particular belief about whether or to what extent God manipulates the wills of men (human persons) with regard to bringing his plans (e.g., Scripture) to fruition.

FAQ: Doesn’t Arminianism rob God of his sovereignty?

A: No, not at all. It only says God is sovereign over his sovereignty. In other words, God can (and apparently does) limit his power to permit humans to oppose his will–up to a point. Everything that happens (Arminianism says) falls within the sovereign will of God–either God’s antecedent will or God’s consequent will: God’s antecedent will is that all be saved; God’s consequent will (consequent to the fall) is that all who believe be saved.