Total Depravity

Calvinism consists of theological doctrines which use words found in the Bible. However, Calvinism consistently redefines those words, takes them out of context, applies the doctrines inappropriately, exaggerates the meaning of the words to the extreme, or in some other way distorts the Word of God to match the theology written by John Calvin in his book, Institutes of the Christian Religion. The following is a typical definition of Total Depravity, the First Point of Calvinism, written by one of the popular Calvinist authors.

Total Depravity or Total Inability

"Because of the fall, man is unable of himself to savingly believe the gospel. The sinner is dead, blind, and deaf to the things of God; his heart is deceitful and desperately corrupt. His will is not free, it is in bondage to his evil nature, therefore, he will not - indeed he cannot - choose good over evil in the spiritual realm. Consequently, it takes much more than the Spirit's assistance to bring a sinner to Christ - it takes regeneration by which the Spirit makes the sinner alive and gives him a new nature. Faith is not something man contributes to salvation but is itself a part of God's gift of salvation - it is God's gift to the sinner, not the sinner's gift to God."

The Bible clearly teaches the sin nature and evil ways of mankind. This is the case with every person and is fully supported by Scripture, but Scripture certainly does not teach a state of Total Depravity or Total Inability. Rejection of this exaggeration by Saint Augustine and John Calvin is critical in the proper understanding of a multitude of scripture verses.

Genesis 6:5 Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man [was] great in the earth, and [that] every intent of the thoughts of his heart [was] only evil continually. 6 And the Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. 7 So the Lord said, "I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them." 8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.

Romans 3:10 As it is written: "There is none righteous, no, not one; 11 There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God. 12 They have all turned aside; They have together become unprofitable; There is none who does good, no, not one." 13 "Their throat [is] an open tomb; With their tongues they have practiced deceit"; "The poison of asps [is] under their lips"; 14 "Whose mouth [is] full of cursing and bitterness." 15 "Their feet [are] swift to shed blood; 16 Destruction and misery [are] in their ways; 17 And the way of peace they have not known." 18 "There is no fear of God before their eyes."

Psalm 36:1 An oracle within my heart concerning the transgression of the wicked: [There] [is] no fear of God before his eyes. 2 For he flatters himself in his own eyes, When he finds out his iniquity [and] when he hates. 3 The words of his mouth [are] wickedness and deceit; He has ceased to be wise [and] to do good. 4 He devises wickedness on his bed; He sets himself in a way [that] [is] not good; He does not abhor evil. 

One definition for the word righteous is to be without sin, meaning one is totally sinless. The Apostle Paul in Romans 3:10 is paraphrasing Psalm 36:1 where King David was describing the transgressions of the wicked, not the totally depraved condition of all people. David is specifically separating the wicked from the general population. Everyone sins to some degree and cannot be declared righteous unless that sin is taken away as was done on the cross by Jesus. This does not mean that everyone is totally depraved as suggested by Saint Augustine and John Calvin.

The Apostle Paul wrote the letter of Romans to the church in Rome with a plea and arguments against trying to keep the law (Ten Commandments) as the Jewish believers were attempting to do. He was teaching that no one is without sin. No one is perfect. None are righteous. Trying to keep the law does not justify one before God. Paul was not telling the Romans that people are "Totally Depraved" as falsely taught by Saint Augustine and John Calvin.

A definition used in the Bible for the word unrighteous is the lack of faith. Unbelief in God is certainly unrighteousness. Throughout the Bible people lacking faith in God are described a being unrighteous. Unbelief is certainly a sin, but the Bible never declares that unrighteousness is a state of  totally depravity that requires every person to be continually sinful in all thoughts and deeds. The Bible never states that every person cannot do one thing or have one thought that is not sinful. The Bible say just the opposite. The Bible continually describes the good deeds, right actions, and right decisions made by people. Saint Augustine and John Calvin developed the false doctrine called Total Depravity, but it is not in the Bible.

Romans 3:23 says "all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." The statement "all have sinned" means that no one is perfect and no one is without sin. It does not mean that everyone is totally depraved. Likewise, the statement "fall short of the glory of God" indicates a partial "short" falling only, not a condition of total depravity. Romans 3:23 clearly refutes the "total depravity" doctrine of John Calvin. The total depravity doctrine is false. The exaggeration of Scripture is heresy. John Calvin was a heretic. Yet John Calvin murdered people by burning them at the stake simply because they disagreed with him. Jesus taught to "turn the other cheek" (Matthew 5:39) and to "brush the dust off your feet" (Mark 6:11) when people disagreed with you.

Romans 3:21 But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, 22 even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference; 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God set forth [as] a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, 26 to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

John Calvin says all mankind are Totally Depraved. If so, who are the righteous mentioned more than thirty time is the Book of Psalms such as in Psalms 37:17? Job was described as blameless and upright in Job 1:1 and God saw Noah was righteous in Genesis 7:1. The Bible talks of righteous people numerous times. Calvinists will say these people and all the other examples were made righteous by God, but there is absolutely no scripture to support that doctrine.

Psalms 37:17 For the arms of the wicked shall be broken, But the Lord upholds the righteous.

Job 1:1 There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name [was] Job; and that man was blameless and upright, and one who feared God and shunned evil.

Genesis 7:1 Then the Lord said to Noah, "Come into the ark, you and all your household, because I have seen [that] you [are] righteous before Me in this generation."

Calvinistic preachers falsely teach that Noah was totally depraved. They preach falsely because to teach correctly would be contrary to the false doctrines of Calvinism. However, the Bible teaches that Noah was "perfect in his generation" and "walked with God." The false teachers of Calvinism give the word "perfect" a different definition in order to distort Scripture. We know that Noah was righteous because he "walked with God." Noah's faith was counted to him as righteousness because he believed God. Abraham was exactly the same. God would not have had such a close relationship with a depraved man. God considered them to be righteous, not depraved. We know Noah and Abraham were righteous because God threw Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden because of one simple sin of disobedience. Before Adam's sin he also walked and talked with God. Noah and Abraham both showed they were not perfect later in life but neither could be described as depraved and certainly not totally depraved as falsely taught by John Calvin.

Genesis 6:9 This is the genealogy of Noah. Noah was a just man, perfect in his generations. Noah walked with God.

Abel brought the best of his sheep as an offering to God. The Lord respected Abel and his offering. Abel did well. This certainly rebukes the doctrine of Total Depravity and Total Inability.

Genesis 4:2 Then she bore again, this time his brother Abel. Now Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. 3 And in the process of time it came to pass that Cain brought an offering of the fruit of the ground to the Lord. 4 Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat. And the Lord respected Abel and his offering, 5 but He did not respect Cain and his offering. And Cain was very angry, and his countenance fell. 6 So the Lord said to Cain, "Why are you angry? And why has your countenance fallen? 7 "If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin lies at the door.

All of mankind have a sin nature since the fall. Many verses of Scripture talk of the exceedingly sinful nature of a generation, group or city. Indeed they were, but one cannot take these verses out of context and apply every situation to all mankind in an effort to support a false doctrine. According to John Calvin's doctrine a man who admits to unbelief in God and yet saves a drowning child at the risk of his own life would be performing an act of total depravity.

John Calvin followed in the footsteps of Saint Augustine by applying the theology of the heretic Gnostic Christian sect and those of the Manichaeism pagan religion to the Bible to describe man's sin nature as Total Depravity. The word "depravity" is not found in the Bible but has its source in Augustine and his pagan religion. Calvinists exaggerate the sin nature of man to the extreme in an effort to claim man cannot believe the gospel when it is presented to him, a condition of Total Inability. We know this definition by Calvinists is untrue because the Bible continually calls upon the unregenerate unbeliever to believe, and many respond. John Calvin taught that man cannot respond to God's call for sinners to believe because of man's total inability. This doctrine is a blasphemous assault on God's character by suggesting God is asking something of man that God knows man cannot do and then punishing man for not responding.

Calvin's Distortion of the Attributes of God

Calvinism teaches that man's depravity and inability are of such an extreme that man cannot do anything good or evil, believe or disbelieve, without being directed or controlled by God. This doctrine is certainly depraved because it makes man a puppet of God and God the author of sin. In Calvinism, God creates a totally depraved man, God causes the man to sin, God punishes man for this sin by sentencing him to eternal torment, and although God has provided a way of salvation for a glorious life in heaven, He elects some men for eternal damnation. This doctrine is justified by Calvinists by pronouncing that God's sovereignty allows it. They ignore and violate all of God's other attributes of love, justice, grace, and mercy by their doctrine of Total Depravity. This distortion of God is nothing short of blasphemy.

The Bible says:

John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life."

Calvinism does not accept the clear message of John 3:16. Calvinism teaches that God didn't love the world but instead loved only a few and hated the rest. This error in Calvinism is a direct result of their failure to correctly understand Christ's total removal of our sins as we shall see in our study on Limited Atonement. Calvinism teaches that "whoever believes in Him shall not perish" does not really mean what it says but instead means that only some may believe. Obviously, Calvin has twisted a lot of Scripture in the attempt to force it to match his own theology.

The Apostle Paul taught man's sin in the context that man on his own merits cannot become acceptable to God because man cannot be perfect as required by God in this Dispensation of Grace or Church Age. The Bible verses referenced by Calvinists describe man's sin nature, not a condition of Total Depravity or Total Inability.

Total Depravity is Disputed by Scripture

The existence of God has been manifested in every person in his unregenerate (unsaved) state by the attributes of God clearly seen in all of His creation so that no one is without excuse for rejecting the eternal Godhead. This Scripture is in complete contradiction to the erroneous doctrine of being blind and deaf to the things of God in Total Depravity. In fact, this Scripture teaches that no one on earth, even the most vile person whoever lived, is totally depraved, but rather that every person is responsible for knowing the existence of God by the observance of creation around him.

Romans 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown [it] to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible [attributes] are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, [even] His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify [Him] as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man--and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.

Since the time of Adam, the Bible affirms man's ability to respond to the Gospel while in a fallen state. The following verses are in clear contradiction to the erroneous doctrines of Total Depravity or Total Inability which incorrectly teach that the unregenerate man does not have the ability to believe in the redemptive work of Jesus Christ for his salvation. The Bible solidly teaches that every person is given "the measure of faith" and has been enlightened by Jesus Christ while still in his unsaved, fallen state.

Romans 6:17 But God be thanked that [though] you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered.

Romans 12:3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think [of] [himself] more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.

John 1:9 That was the true Light which gives light to every man coming into the world.

Cornelius was a Gentile and not a Jew. He could not be classified as one of the elect, but he was accepted by God because of his faith, Acts 10:4. He had faith in God even though God didn't ordain any Gentile to receive the gospel at this time. God turned to the Gentiles with salvation, Acts 11:1. These verses are in contradiction to the erroneous theologies of Total Depravity or Total Inability and Unconditional Election. Notice in Acts 13:42 that the unbelieving Gentiles were begging for the Word of God to be preached to them also. Cornelius was not saved and had not received the Holy Spirit before Peter arrived at his house. Yet he was a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always. This is certainly not a condition of Total Depravity as described in Calvinism. This story about Cornelius proves the basic foundational doctrine of Calvinism, Total Depravity, to be totally false.

Acts 10:1 There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of what was called the Italian Regiment, 2 a devout [man] and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always. 3 About the ninth hour of the day he saw clearly in a vision an angel of God coming in and saying to him, "Cornelius!" 4 And when he observed him, he was afraid, and said, "What is it, lord?" So he said to him, "Your prayers and your alms have come up for a memorial before God."

Acts 11:1 Now the apostles and brethren who were in Judea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God.

Acts 11:17 "If therefore God gave them the same gift as [He] [gave] us when we believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could withstand God?" 18 When they heard these things they became silent; and they glorified God, saying, "Then God has also granted to the Gentiles repentance to life."

Acts 13:42 So when the Jews went out of the synagogue, the Gentiles begged that these words might be preached to them the next Sabbath.

Lydia was a Gentile in an area that is now the country of Turkey. She was not a Jew. Yet she worshipped God before being saved and before God open her heart. Because of her faith God opened her heart to the gospel spoken by the Apostle Paul. God will draw people to Him, but the first move must be by one's own free will to seek and worship God. God would never approach a "Totally Depraved" man, if there were such a person.

Acts 16:13 And on the Sabbath day we went out of the city to the riverside, where prayer was customarily made; and we sat down and spoke to the women who met [there]. 14 Now a certain woman named Lydia heard [us]. She was a seller of purple from the city of Thyatira, who worshiped God. The Lord opened her heart to heed the things spoken by Paul. 15 And when she and her household were baptized, she begged [us], saying, "If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come to my house and stay." So she persuaded us.

All mankind is commanded in the Scriptures to believe in God and Jesus Christ. These verses overthrow the false doctrines of Total Depravity, Total Inability, and Unconditional Election. Mark 16:16, John 20:31, Acts 16:31, Romans 10:9, 1 John 3:23 and 1 John 5:13 have no meaning without the free will of mankind. God calls upon mankind to believe in Christ because mankind has the free will to believe or reject Christ. God would have no reason to call upon mankind to believe if mankind were in a state of Total Depravity or Total Inability to respond.

Mark 16:16 "He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned."

John 20:31 but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.

Acts 16:31 So they said, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household."

Romans 10:9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

1 John 3:23 And this is His commandment: that we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ and love one another, as He gave us commandment.

1 John 5:13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may [continue] [to] believe in the name of the Son of God.

Isaiah 45:22 "Look to Me, and be saved, All you ends of the earth! For I [am] God, and [there] [is] no other."

Mark 1:15 "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel."

Acts 17:30 "Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent."

Revelation 22:17 And the Spirit and the bride say, "Come!" And let him who hears say, "Come!" And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.

Matthew 11:28 "Come to Me, all [you] who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest."

John 7:37 On the last day, that great [day] of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, "If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink."

Scripture Supports Man's Faith is by Free Will

Scripture clearly teaches that "your faith" is required in order for God to administer His blessing upon you. The phrase "your faith" or "their faith" is given thirty-three times in the New Testament New King James Version. Statements such as "God's faith" or "Jesus' faith," as one would expect under Calvinism, do not appear.

John 3:36 "He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him."

Matthew 9:2 Then behold, they brought to Him a paralytic lying on a bed. When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, "Son, be of good cheer; your sins are forgiven you."

Matthew 9:22 But Jesus turned around, and when He saw her He said, "Be of good cheer, daughter; your faith has made you well."

Matthew 9:29 Then He touched their eyes, saying, "According to your faith let it be to you."

Matthew 15:28 Then Jesus answered and said to her, "O woman, great [is] your faith! Let it be to you as you desire." And her daughter was healed from that very hour.

Mark 2:5 When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, "Son, your sins are forgiven you."

Mark 5:34 And He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace, and be healed of your affliction."

Mark 10:52 Then Jesus said to him, "Go your way; your faith has made you well." And immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus on the road.

Luke 7:50 Then He said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you. Go in peace."

Luke 8:48 And He said to her, "Daughter, be of good cheer; your faith has made you well. Go in peace."

Luke 17:19 And He said to him, "Arise, go your way. Your faith has made you well."

Luke 18:42 Then Jesus said to him, "Receive your sight; your faith has made you well." 43 And immediately he received his sight, and followed Him, glorifying God. And all the people, when they saw [it], gave praise to God.

John 6:39b "And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day."

Romans 1:8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.

2 Corinthians 1:23 Moreover I call God as witness against my soul, that to spare you I came no more to Corinth. 24 Not that we have dominion over your faith, but are fellow workers for your joy; for by faith you stand.

1 Peter 1:6 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 that the genuineness of your faith, [being] much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, 8 whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see [Him], yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, 9 receiving the end of your faith--the salvation of [your] souls.

The "faith of Jesus" appears once in Scripture but does not say that Jesus gave faith to the unsaved that they might believe as required by the Calvinistic doctrine of Total Depravity. Rather, it indicates that the believer kept the same faith as Jesus, or the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Revelation 14:12 Here is the patience of the saints; here [are] those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus.

The following verses are a few of many that clearly show that a personal belief in Jesus Christ is required for salvation. Believing is not thrust upon anyone by God but requires a conscious free will decision by each individual. Nowhere in Scripture is there any verse, verses or concepts which supports the blasphemous doctrine that God predestined any specific individual to eternal life and others to eternal damnation.

1 John 5:5 Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?

Acts 15:11 "But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved in the same manner as they."

Acts 16:31 So they said, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household."

Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.

Romans 3:21 But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, 22 even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe.

Romans 9:33 As it is written: "Behold, I lay in Zion a stumbling stone and rock of offense, And whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame."

Romans 10:9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

Galatians 2:16 "knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified."

Galatians 3:22 But the Scripture has confined all under sin, that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe. 23 But before faith came, we were kept under guard by the law, kept for the faith which would afterward be revealed. 24 Therefore the law was our tutor [to] [bring] [us] to Christ, that we might be justified by faith.

Ephesians 1:13 In Him you also [trusted], after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.

1 Thessalonians 4:14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus.

2 Thessalonians 1:10 when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed.

Calvinists often use Isaiah 64:6-7 below to claim that the best works of man are like filthy rags to God.

Isaiah 64:6 But we are all like an unclean [thing], And all our righteousnesses [are] like filthy rags; We all fade as a leaf, And our iniquities, like the wind, Have taken us away. 7 And [there] [is] no one who calls on Your name, Who stirs himself up to take hold of You; For You have hidden Your face from us, And have consumed us because of our iniquities.

Isaiah is describing the deplorable sinful condition of Israel at that time. He says, "And [there] [is] no one who calls on Your name." Certainly these verses cannot be applied to all people in all generations because many have called upon God as clearly seen in Scripture. We should not apply to all people of all generations the statement that "the best works of man is like filthy rags to God." These verses cannot be used to support the false doctrine of Total Depravity.

In our Dispensation of Grace our faith that God has raised Jesus from the dead is our justification. A fireman may decide by his free will to rescue a child from a burning building. This is certainly a wonderful act by the fireman in risking his own life to rescue the child. However, the righteous act of rescue becomes a filthy rag to God if the fireman prays to God claiming his righteous act justifies some of his past sins. The fireman's attempt to justify his sins by good deeds make Jesus' death of no avail, refutes the gospel of Christ and blasphemes God. Good deeds used as justification for one's own sin is certainly rejected by God as a filthy rag. All unsaved people are encouraged in Scripture to call upon the Lord by his own free will. God would certainly not ask unsaved people to "call on the name of the Lord" if they were Totally Depraved with Total Inability.

Romans 10:12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. 13 For "whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved."

Scripture Shows Man's Faith is Not Imputed From God

Calvinists falsely claim that man's depravity is so grave he cannot believe or have faith unless this faith is imputed from God. John Calvin could not produce any Scripture to support this false doctrine that Calvin's followers continue to espouse. The Bible clearly tells us how a person obtains his faith. The responsibility for believing or rejecting the correct Biblical truth is clearly one of choice or free will. We receive faith by hearing the word of God preached or by reading the Bible ourselves.

Romans 10:17 So then faith [comes] by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Where Does Faith Come From? Faith of the Son of God or Your Faith?

The story of Jesus' healing the Centurion's servant clearly shows that man can have faith in Jesus which is not imputed faith from God. Jesus marveled at the Centurion's faith. If the man's faith had come from God, Jesus would not have marveled. This verse clearly disputes the Calvinist doctrine that God imputes all faith to man because of his state of Total Depravity.

Matthew 8:8 The centurion answered and said, "Lord, I am not worthy that You should come under my roof. But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed. 9 "For I also am a man under authority, having soldiers under me. And I say to this [one], `Go,' and he goes; and to another, `Come,' and he comes; and to my servant, `Do this,' and he does [it]." 10 When Jesus heard [it], He marveled, and said to those who followed, "Assuredly, I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel!

The reason man doesn't respond to the gospel is not because he has the inability to do so. The following verses clearly show that man has the free will to believe.

Matthew 23:37 "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under [her] wings, but you were not willing!"

Luke 8:12 "Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved."

John 5:40 "But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life."

1 Thessalonians 2:16 forbidding us to speak to the Gentiles that they may be saved, so as always to fill up [the] [measure] [of] their sins; but wrath has come upon them to the uttermost.

The person who refuses to believe in Jesus Christ cannot have eternal life with God because he has rejected the forgiveness of his sins provided by Christ's death on the cross, he has rejected Christ as the Mediator between God and man provided by Christ's resurrection, and refused Christ's life which is provided by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

Isaiah 59:1 Behold, the Lord's hand is not shortened, That it cannot save; Nor His ear heavy, That it cannot hear. 2 But your iniquities have separated you from your God; And your sins have hidden [His] face from you, So that He will not hear.

John 3:36 "He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him."

John 8:24 "Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am [He], you will die in your sins."

John 14:6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. 7 If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him."

1 Timothy 2:5 For [there] [is] one God and one Mediator between God and men, [the] Man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.

Man's Free Will to do Good or Evil

The Bible throughout Scripture instructs mankind to make righteous decisions by free will. Many persons misinterpret a few verses to arrive at the false idea that mankind does not have a free will to do good or make righteous decisions. Below are some verses which strongly show that mankind has the responsibility to exercise his free will and is commanded by God to do so. God would certainly not ask people to do something if they did not have the ability to respond. These Scripture strongly refute the false theology of John Calvin that mankind is in a state of Total Depravity and Total Inability.

Deuteronomy 30:11 "For this commandment which I command you today [is] not [too] mysterious for you, nor [is] it far off. 12 It [is] not in heaven, that you should say, `Who will ascend into heaven for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?' 13 Nor [is] it beyond the sea, that you should say, `Who will go over the sea for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?' 14 But the word [is] very near you, in your mouth and in your heart, that you may do it."

Deuteronomy 30:15 "See, I have set before you today life and good, death and evil, 16 "in that I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in His ways, and to keep His commandments, His statutes, and His judgments, that you may live and multiply; and the Lord your God will bless you in the land which you go to possess. 17 "But if your heart turns away so that you do not hear, and are drawn away, and worship other gods and serve them, 18 "I announce to you today that you shall surely perish; you shall not prolong [your] days in the land which you cross over the Jordan to go in and possess. 19 "I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, [that] I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live.

Romans 2:10 but glory, honor, and peace to everyone who works what is good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 11 For there is no partiality with God.

1 Corinthians 9:24 Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain [it]. 25 And everyone who competes [for] [the] [prize] is temperate in all things. Now they [do] [it] to obtain a perishable crown, but we [for] an imperishable [crown].

1 Timothy 6:12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 13 I urge you in the sight of God who gives life to all things, and [before] Christ Jesus who witnessed the good confession before Pontius Pilate, 14 that you keep [this] commandment without spot, blameless until our Lord Jesus Christ's appearing.

2 Timothy 2:21 Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.

1 John 5:1 Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves Him who begot also loves him who is begotten of Him.

Calvinism teaches that the natural man cannot do anything good in a condition of Total Inability, but this doctrine is proven to be false in Romans 2:14-15. The unregenerate have a conscience that teaches them right and wrong from which they can do good or evil by their own free will. The lost Gentiles were keeping some of the Ten Commandments even though the Law had not been given to them.

Romans 2:14-16 for when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do the things in the law, these, although not having the law, are a law to themselves, 15 who show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and between themselves [their] thoughts accusing or else excusing [them]) 16 in the day when God will judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ, according to my gospel.

Total Depravity or Total Inability is the major foundation of Calvinism. Without Calvin's doctrine of Total Depravity his theology crumbles like a house of cards, and with it election, grace, and atonement as presented in the Bible must be redefined. The false doctrine of Total Inability must by its very logic lead to the false doctrines of Unconditional Election, Limited Atonement, and Irresistible Grace in cascading steps of error. We shall see in the next sections that John Calvin rejected the true Biblical definitions of election, grace, and atonement in order to formulate his theology.

Calvinists worship a god that saves the "elect" who have no faith whatsoever. The false doctrine of Total Depravity stipulates that a lost person cannot believe in God without first being saved. Faith for salvation would violate the false doctrine to Total Depravity. They certainly do worship a god, but the god of their faith does not exist. The clearly teaches that the Almighty God of Creation saves those who come in faith believing in their heart that Jesus Christ took upon Himself the sins of the whole world and rose from the dead to give eternal life to all after they believe.

We believe that salvation is by grace through faith based upon the redemptive work of our Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus took upon Himself the sins of all mankind by His death on the cross, and His resurrection from the dead provides salvation to all who believe. All who receive the Lord Jesus Christ through faith are born again of the Holy Spirit and thereby become the children of God.

The Dutch Church convened the Synod of Dordrecht in 1610 to resolve the dispute between Remonstrants (followers of Jacob Arminius) and the Reformed Church (followers of John Calvin) concerning the correct interpretation of the Bible. In the Reformed Churches of the Netherlands, Jacob Arminius began to teach doctrines contrary to the Reformed faith. The Remonstrants drew up five statements of doctrine in which they set forth their own views. The Calvinists answered the Five Points of the Arminians with their own, which has come to be known as the Five Points of Calvinism. The approval of the Calvinist position was sealed by a prejudiced Synod before it began, and the Calvinists relished the victory by murdering many of their opponents as they fled for their lives. This appeared to be a great victory for Calvinism at the time, but it has since been shown to have been the high point in their theological domination. Calvinism has continued to decline over the centuries because John Calvin's technique of terror is no longer allowed for the spread of his theology.

The Five Points of Calvinism which form the acrostic T-U-L-I-P will be shown here to distort and blaspheme the true attributes of God, the true nature of man and the Holy Scriptures.

Total Depravity

Unconditional Election

Limited Atonement

Irresistible Grace

Perseverance of the Saints

John Calvin

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Click below for Bible studies, references, books and other links.

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The best book for the study of dispensations is:
Gods' Plan for Man
by Finis Jennings Dake, 1990 ISBN-10: 1558290265

Highly recommended book for studying many different theologies is:
The Moody Handbook of Theology
by Paul Enns, ISBN: 0-8024-3428-2

An extremely well written and documented book in refute of Calvinism is:
The Other Side of Calvinism
by Laurence M. Vance, Ph. D., ISBN: 0-9628898-7-3

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