42 this pillar of calvinism relies on the recognition

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42This pillar of Calvinism relies on the recognition of God’s sovereignty in his electionand mankind’s hopelessness without Jesus Christ (2 Timothy 1:9). The concept that God would chose to save a predetermined faithful remnant of mankind, while turning others over to their sin to fulfill His purpose remains at the center the doctrine of predestination (Romans 1:24). This pillar of Calvinism is supported by Paul’s epistle to the Ephesians (1:4-6 NASB) reinforcing God’s purpose in his election: “He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through 40Selderhuis, The Calvin Handbook, Kindle Location 7307.41Gregory Boyd and Paul Eddy. Across the Spectrum: Understanding Issues in Evangelical Theology, Kindle Location 2881.42Ibid., Kindle Location 2900.
Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.”Limited AtonementThe third pillar of Calvin’s theology validates 2 Corinthians 5:21, in that Jesus Christ’s substitutional atonement upon the cross is sufficient to redeem the past, present, and future sins of the entire world, however the doctrine of limited atonement applies only to the previously discussed “elected saints” as studied through the lens of substitutional limited atonement.43This concept is further explained that since Christ died a substitutional death- in the place of all sinners- then those “elect” that the Father has drawn (John 6:44-45), cannot be held accountable and have even been made righteous in the eyes of the Father. However, using the same rationale,knowing that not all would be saved, this vicarious atonement would be a contradiction and Christ’s sacrifice would be wasted on those who have not been called to Christ and will be cast away.44Irresistible GraceThe Apostle Paul outlines the contradictory sin nature of mankind to God’s fellowship in Galatians 5:17 (NASB) stating, “For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit.” Once this perpetual separation of mankind has been established and mankind’s inability to reconcile their transgressions without God’s intervention is understood, then the Calvinistic tenant of irresistiblegrace can be approached. This doctrine explains that through God’s grace alone, the elect are supernaturally transformed from “dead” sinful ways into loving followers that strive to love and glorify God before all else.4543Ibid., Kindle Location 2921.44Ibid.45Ibid.
Perseverance of the SaintsThe final tenant of Calvinism embraced by Reformed theology centers around God’s eternal security in salvation. This doctrine validates that if the sovereign God has elected a believer in Christ and made them righteous through His limited atonement, then that person cannot slip from His hand.46This concept of perseverance through the temptation of sin is Scripturally validated by 1 Peter 1:4-5, as well as John’s Gospel (10:28, NASB), “and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.” ConclusionGeorge rightly states, “Few people in the history of Christianity have been as highly esteemed or as meanly despised as John Calvin.”

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