Banner

"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)

Contributors

  • Rev. John Samson
  • Rev. David Thommen (URC)
  • John Hendryx
  • Marco Gonzalez

    We are a community of confessing believers who love the gospel of Jesus Christ, affirm the Biblical and Christ-exalting truths of the Reformation such as the five solas, the doctrines of grace, monergistic regeneration, and the redemptive historical approach to interpreting the Scriptures.

    top250.jpg

    Community Websites

    Monergism Books on Facebook

    Blogroll

    Latest Posts

    Categories

    Archives

    Ministry Links

  • « Popular Titles at Monergism Books | Main | On the day after an historic election »

    Are Arminians Saved?

    Question: If we are saved by grace alone (and we are) how can anyone be saved if they believe that you can lose your salvation? If one believes they can lose their salvation does not that faith then become a work, rather than a gift of God? If someone believes they can lose their salvation, do they really believe that it is the finished work of Christ, and not the "work" of faith, that saves them? If someone believes that they can lose their salvation, would it be true that their faith is no longer a free gift from God, but something the sinner needs to muster up daily to keep their salvation? So here is the hard question. In this matter, can we be saved in spite bad theology? If someone truly held to the five points of Arminianism, could they have "real" saving faith? Can you have real saving faith without understanding Grace Alone?

    To Read Our Answer Click Here

    Posted by John on November 4, 2008 05:35 PM

    Comments

    "Are Arminians Saved?"

    If they are born again of the Holy Spirit of God they are saved, no question about that. Everyone that is born again of the Holy Spirit of God is saved. Praise the LORD Jesus Christ for that.

    I would argue, without much study of the Reformers, or, those that they rose up against, but purely from Scripture.

    First, I do not know if this is a "once" saved, always saved, kind of idea following just that I just read for the 300th time or more the Book of the Revelation where I read that one's name can be blotted out of the Book of Life:::>

    Rev 3:5 The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will never blot his name out of the book of life. I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels.

    But when I consider a certain Greek word used only twice in the New Testament by Paul, once at Ephesians 2:5 and also at Colossians 2:13 and what the meaning of the word is and I consider the "strength" of this word used and by Who, I can see where I tend to believe that once you are indeed saved, in the sense and context Paul makes of both Ephesians 2 and Colossians 2, you would have to go way beyond a couple of experiences and afterwards "not repent" for the Lord to remove your name from the Book of Life? I will point to the two experiences after pasting the Greek word.

    The Greek word used by Paul in Ephesians 2:5 and Colossians 2:13 is:

    συζωοποιέω
    suzōopoieō
    sood-zo-op-oy-eh'-o
    From G4862 and G2227; to reanimate conjointly with (figuratively): - quicken together with.

    Eph 2:5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ--by grace you have been saved--

    "....[suzōopoieō/made us alive together] with Christ...."

    Col 2:13 And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses,

    "....[suzōopoieō/made alive together with]...."

    Now I would point to two separate experiences that leads me to conclude that one has to be so fully aligned with the devil, against God and not be willing to repent wanting to willingly be against God and be judged by God to be so unredeemable and very grevious for God to not be willing to do this but destroy your body and soul instead:::>

    The first place I point to is here:::>

    1Co 5:4 When you are assembled in the name of the Lord Jesus and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus,
    1Co 5:5 you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord.


    The second place is here:::>

    1Ti 1:18 This charge I entrust to you, Timothy, my child, in accordance with the prophecies previously made about you, that by them you may wage the good warfare,
    1Ti 1:19 holding faith and a good conscience. By rejecting this, some have made shipwreck of their faith,
    1Ti 1:20 among whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme.

    Now in the first instance at 1 Cor. 5, you read that this guy is turned over to Satan for the destruction of his "flesh" that his "spirit" is saved.

    In the second instance at 2 Tim. 1, these two guys are turned over to Satan to be taught not to blaspheme!

    In the first instance it's pretty grave to undergo the destruction of your flesh so as to be saved spiritually!

    In the second instance, I would say God or Paul and God must have a sense of humor, however it is, in that, the "chief blasphemer" has to "teach" these two guys not to blaspheme! Hmmmmmm? I suppose Satan's anger was even hotter against Paul the Apostle and God to have to do that?

    So, when you consider that Greek Word suzōopoieō against this Scripture and "Who" is doing "What" it seems hard to believe God is just going to willy nilly blot your name out of the Book of Life?::::>

    Mat 11:27 All things have been handed over to me by my Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.


    It is God Our Heavenly Father "Who" reveals Christ to us, as in Ephesians 2:5 and Colossians 2:13 conjoining us to Christ and so once One in Christ, it seems to me near next to impossible to be separated from Them?

    Revelation 3:5 does indicate a blotting out of one's name from the Book of Life though. Maybe, because I am not a scholar of Greek in any deep sense and I am certainly unknowledgeable of construction of the original manuscripts, maybe I am "twisting" or making something from nothing when I assert that?

    Amen.

    As his article said, the issue comes down to the "true" Arminian. The "true" Arminian isn't saved. An undiscipled Christian may make statements resembling Arminianism, but with disipleship learn the error of their way.

    Obviously there are philosophical Calvinists who are not regenerate, and by definition are not "true" Calvinists. Many have called my stance as a "gnostic" saying "knowledge" is required for conversion. I disagree. Knowledge never regenerates, but regeneration always brings knowledge of Christ and truth, yet not becoming omniscient.

    Will one really defend such an opinion, "Oh, I believe Jesus is merely a man and likely a spirit brother of Satan, yet if you ignore Joseph Smith, you might find salvation through observing the mass."....well, such a testimony is merely a Christian who needs discipleship? Obviously such errors will not exist in the regenerate mind. Likewise the certain errors of Arminianism will not exist in the regenerate mind either. When arminians call me a gnostic, I call them a gnostic, because they require atheists to become theists before affirming their conversion;

    So both have a bar of fruit in knowledge, it is just that Arminians make man "confess that knowledge" as the cause of regeneration, and Calvinists proclaim that only grace could reveal the kingdom, and fruit of truth (not thorns) is evident in their theology.

    Isn't the argument over whether Arminians are saved rather like the arguments over the number of angels that can dance on the head of a pin? Does not Scripture tell us that God saves whom God wills to save? Is theology not merely an attempt to understand the deepest mysteries, so a misunderstanding of those mysteries does not change them, does it? If I believe that Satan causes the flu, do the germs not infect me any more? Of course they do. My failure to understand the causality is irrelevant to the actual cause. Likewise, a failure to accurately interpret salvation does not automatically result in its loss. Instead, I would suggest that those who are wrong are spending their resources doing unnecessary activities to obtain or retain their salvation and would be better served to do the work of Christ in the world. Sadly, as Calvin reminds us, we don't know who is saved except, we faithfully believe, ourselves.

    Or am I completely off base?

    Some believe they will lose their salvation and think they must continue to 'work it out' after 'accepting' Christ. Some believe God chooses but they can refuse His offer. Many of them do not know they are labeled as 'arminians'. I believe in 5-point calvinism but I am not saved because I believe it. I am saved because of His grace, His mercy. Then some said I promote antinomianism or call me a hypercalvinist. His sheep will know His voice and there will always be weeds growing with the wheat. The danger lies in nowadays mainstream evangelism, making people think by saying a prayer of their 'belief' to 'choose' Jesus, they are insured for salvation and avoid hell. 99% of lies + 1% of partial truth makes the lie very powerful. Debate is healthy if one's heart truly love the person and wants to rebuke, correct and encourage (2Tim4) but most of the time, it just causes separation and does more harm. What is the motive behind all our actions serving God? duty, earn blessings, fear of punishment, guilt, or simply out of loving Him because He first loves us? If one, calvinist, arminian, etc... calls himself a believer, does he see a new self with the fruit of the Holy Spirit (Gal 5,Col 3) which is basically the result of a regenerated heart by the same Holy Spirit?

    If salvation can be lost then one cannot speak with certainty about being saved "from the wrath to come." We do not really know if we will endure to the end since we do not know the future. I don't see how this does not undermine assurance. If you ask an arminian if they are saved then the consistent response should be "at present I am" or "I hope so." Just some thoughts. I am not an arminian.

    Chris, you said: We do not really know if we will endure to the end since we do not know the future.

    We do not know the future but we know the one who holds the future and His promises are trustworthy, unlike ours. Anyone who claims we can lose salvation is asserting that what Jesus did for us was insufficient to save completely.

    Stupid theology:
    Saved at 2pm today but lost it at 12 midnight the following day.

    4 days later lost it but repented. Saved again. Lost again saved again lost again. Saved yesterday lost today!

    First of all, not all Arminians believe that Christians can lose their salvation. See the Society of Evangelical Arminians. In his debate with the Calvinists at Dort, Arminius did not proclaim it. And he was reported to have died with complete assurance. Arminians do not teach that God throws people away. They teach that people walk away from God, that people don't lose their ability to choose when they become Christians. Arminius's concern was that Calvinist made sin irrelevant to one's relationship with God, and he wanted to give responsibility back to the believer. Calvinism teaches that one cannot know whether or not one is a believer until he dies. What kind of father would leave his children in the dark about whether or not they are really his until it is too late? There is no assurance in that. Scripture says we can know we have eternal life (1 John 5:13). See my recent blogs on Arminianism at www.leewardhope.blogspot.com. Most of what I see on Reformation Theology is based on stereotypical attitudes about Arminians, not on actual facts. I put my theology ruthlessly to the test in every day life. My recent experience as a member of a Calvinistic church proved to me that Calvinism is oppressively legalistic in its application. I could put it more strongly than that, but to do so would be unloving. I am a believer and an Arminian. God bless you. Kathryn M. Lee

    Arminians in my honest opinion worship another god. It's not the God of the scripture. By them believing that you can lose your salvation, they should not bother trying to bring back those who have fallen away. Cause scripture is clear that if it was possible to lose your salvation you cannot bring them back to repentance. Hebrews 6:4-6 "For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and have become partakers of the Holy Spirit,and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, if they fall away, to renew them again to repentance, since they crucify again for themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an open shame. " in response of the person that said that Calvinism is legalistic you are further from the truth. Because we believe in something called Grace. You Arminians believe you keep yourself saved by keeping the laws.

    Joseph...that's a harsh judgement..but of course, it's what Calvinists say. You people think you alone have the truth and are better than everyone because you are "elect". You use "election" as a weapon to brow beat and bully others. Well it is YOU Calvinists who cannot be saved because you blaspheme God and turn people away from Him. The curse of God upon all Calvinists!!!!!!

    Whether or not someone who holds the Arminian view is truly saved is something I have questioned also.. I used to believe similar to arminians before studying the Bible and I realize now that I never even knew who God was before. When arminians talk about God it always seems that they don't know much about the Bible or who God is and its hard to believe a true Christian would be living in such error with regard to Christ and Biblical teachings. Most outright reject the scriptures that contradict what they believe and what makes it worse is that they show no interest in truly finding out what the truth is, they just continue on in error.. From personal experience I have seen it to mostly be pride that gets in the way. Whether they will be saved in the end is debatable, but I would say all we can do is pray that God would bring them out of the deception and error that they have fallen into and bring them to the knowledge of truth

    I'm extremely interested in this topic because I made the foolish mistake of assuming we believed the same about election because she went to the same kind of church that I did... We have been courting for 6 months now and to my surprise, after I brought up the 5 points of Calvinism she had no idea what they were... So I decided to start with the basics and asked her if she believed you could lose your salvation...She said she believed you could because her brother had...I just about fell over backwards and after bringing up several scripture passages and talking about it for a few hours I was able to help her understand that we couldn't lose our salvation. I then moved on to the other points of Calvinism and it turns out that she pretty much believes the Arminian views (aside from Perseverance of the Saints because I explained it to her) and to make things worse Her dad was a pastor and apparently believes that we choose God before he chooses us and that we have the power to "let Him save us" and until we do this, God is powerless to save us but desperately wants to save everyone...I don't need to go into detail on what Arminians believe but my problem is that she truly seems to have a heart for God and I desperately want to continue our relationship but in her opinion the fact that God would "pick some people over others" and "leave some without even a chance" is impossible to believe, she doesn't see the point of evangelism if God already decided who was going to believe in Him and she also hates the idea of "being a forced robot"...She thinks that the idea that His elect cannot resist His Grace is appalling and prefers the idea of having a relationship where we choose God because we love Him and not because He forced us to.
    So my question is; How can I speak the truth in Love on this subject to someone who has been raised on the lie that there is good in us apart from God and that it's up to us to choose Him?
    Please don't respond to this if you disagree with my position as a 5-point Calvinist, you will be wasting your time, I am 100% convinced that the bible CLEARLY teaches what has been named as "Calvinism" and I am only looking for advice on how to best explain the errors of Arminianism to someone I love dearly. She loves me and would like to agree so I see this as a big opportunity and responsibility. Thanks for any help!

    I forgot to mention that "she" is my girlfriend Katie

    My life was a mess, I was depressed (at 21 years old) and recognised that I couldn't correct the things that were wrong in me (I didn't know the what the term "sin" meant).
    I started reading things that might give me the help I needed, without knowing where to look.
    I had the NT and a book on witchcraft lying next to my bed and read them alternately; but gradually became captivated by the NT and put the other book away.
    Jesus was like no-one that any author would invent, he was too uncomfortable to anyone with a proud heart and yet he was perfect in every way.
    I couldn't understand why anyone would hate him (although I now know that the world hates him, and why). I could understand why people would dislike me, with all my faults; but not him.
    I was shown, through his word, that I had broken God's law and I became afraid; but kept reading, hoping to find a way out.
    I was reading the gospel according to Luke and suddenly, when I read what Jesus said, while in agony, on the cross: - "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.", it was miraculously revealed to my heart and mind that Jesus saved me on that cross. Immediately I broke down in tears of sorrow for my sin and rapturous joy that God had saved me. The moment before I had been an unsaved unbeliever, looking for deliverance, the next, without any decision on my part, I believed with joy unspeakable and full of glory. Then I made a heartfelt decision to follow the Lord Jesus, wherever he would lead and my heart was full of love for him.
    Salvation is of the Lord, not fallen man's choice!

    @David the nicene hobbit When did I say that we are know it all? I was raised in the Arminian circle for 25 years and I found it to be a blessing. Because when God actually saved me 7 years ago I had understanding between error teaching and truth. I find the 4 points of Arminianism being error and i could consider someone who holds to the 4 points a brother and sister in Christ. but to me ( my opinion ) If One that holds on to the fifth point of Arminanism " fall from grace" It's where I would doubt if that person is really saved to begin with.
    Second When did I say that we are better? That's your assumption. We actually say and scripture says that God elects some for salvation despite our foolishness and our sinful nature. When we all clearly deserve Gods wrath we have obtained Salvation because nothing in us or because we are lovable because non are lovable. But because God has chosen to have mercy on some. And outside from Christ based on my works I deserve Gods full wrath. Am I in a better position because God has ordain me and every believer for eternal life? I would say yes! We are not elect because we are lovable, but because he has elected us because God is merciful towards dirty rags.
    If you are going to believe what scripture speaks of you must hold a form of "Elect doctrine" So not only Calvinist believe in election. You are showing your arrogance by your attacks on me based on something I never said, but by assuming that God has elected us because we are better. That would be the Arminian position not a Calvinistic view. The Arminian God saves on who is smarter or more good in the choice a person makes for God. But the scripture God saves despite our unrighteosness despite our stupidity. His love for his Children is unconditional he changes us because he has chosen to love us when we were not lovable. And also it is not us who turn people from God. Read scripture. but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. (1 Corinthians 1:23, 24 ESV) but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. (1 Corinthians 1:23, 24 ESV) For it stands in Scripture:
    "Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone,
    a cornerstone chosen and precious,
    and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame."
    So the honor is for you who believe, but for those who do not believe,"The stone that the builders rejected
    has become the cornerstone," and
    "A stone of stumbling,
    and a rock of offense."
    They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do. (1 Peter 2:6-8 ESV)

    Post a comment

    Please enter the letter "d" in the field below: