Friday, 3 April 2009
Who has a better understanding of their eternal security?
You've really not got to be on the Calvinist/Arminian scene very long before a Calvinist will throw this beauty at you: "Because I'm predestined by God I know that no-matter what I will be saved." Which is usually followed by something of the lines, "I pity you Arminians, not knowing whether you are actually saved or not." My question then is an important one. Is this a valid deduction? Do Calvinists really know that they are saved and Arminians just live in hope that they are?
Simple answer: No!
Slightly more in-depth answer: Firstly there is a misunderstanding in Arminianism here. Arminians believe that we are saved solely by the work of God, and most definitely not due to any of our efforts. The very act of choosing is given by God (Prevenient Grace). It is not of our own works so that no-one can boast!
Secondly, I believe that the Calvinists have actually got it backwards. They are the ones who cannot really know if they are saved or not and here is why. The elect are those who are saved. For a Calvinist the only way to know that you are truly saved is that once you are resurrected and God judges you as righteous (that is saved through Christ). Nothing else is a good enough witness. You may think you believe but you may apostate tomorrow proving that you were never saved in the first place. For the Arminian however they are certain of their salvation. Now that is not to say that that is eternally sure but that is to say at each moment. If I am called and I respond to the Gospel then I am saved. I may also apostate tomorrow but that merely shows that I was saved and have forsaken so great a salvation.
I am certain that I am saved and seek, with Gods help, to persevere to the end that I may not stumble or be disqualified.
Till next time!