Join Michael Patton, Tim Kimberley and Sam Storms as they discuss Calvinism.


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C Michael Patton
C Michael Patton

C. Michael Patton is the primary contributor to the Parchment and Pen/Credo Blog. He has been in ministry for nearly twenty years as a pastor, author, speaker, and blogger. Find him on Patreon Th.M. Dallas Theological Seminary (2001), president of Credo House Ministries and Credo Courses, author of Now that I'm a Christian (Crossway, 2014) Increase My Faith (Credo House, 2011), and The Theology Program (Reclaiming the Mind Ministries, 2001-2006), host of Theology Unplugged, and primary blogger here at Parchment and Pen. But, most importantly, husband to a beautiful wife and father to four awesome children. Michael is available for speaking engagements. Join his Patreon and support his ministry

    6 replies to "Theology Unplugged: An Invitation to Calvinism Part 2"

    • Rick C.

      (For anyone who doesn’t know): Arminius died when he was working out his thoughts about the Perseverance of the Saints.

      Otherwise, Roger Olson just wrote a long and very descriptive blog about Arminius and Arminianism here.

      Excerpts (concerning Prevenient Grace) —>“Arminius’ affirmation that regeneration precedes even the first movement of the will toward God may surprise even many Arminians. It is usually thought that only Calvinists believe that regeneration precedes conversion. However, … the regeneration of which the Dutch theologian here spoke is not complete regeneration but a partial regeneration in which the bondage of the will to sin is released so that the sinner can for the first time respond freely God’s offer of mercy in Jesus Christ. This is, of course, prevenient grace—an Arminian doctrine much neglected, misunderstood and sometimes maligned by Reformed critics of Arminianism. It is a, if not the, distinctive doctrine of Arminian theology that sets it apart from all forms of monergistic soteriology … Arminius believed and taught that the source of all good is God and his grace; nothing spiritually worthy arises from the human person alone—not even the first inclination of the mind or heart toward God. God “bends the will” to the good but not irresistibly. And God does not take away the person’s freedom to resist God’s grace. In essence, then, what Arminius was saying is that the only thing the human person does in salvation is not resist the grace of God. Everything else is God’s work alone and human non-resistance to God’s grace can hardly be called a “work.” It certainly cannot be claimed as meritorious.”< —(end excerpt)

      ‘Just offering alternate views about Arminius and Arminianism—from an Arminian (I’m not one myself).


    • Rick C.

      P.S. My rather long quote from Roger Olson was meant to “amplify” what Sam Storms was saying about Prevenient Grace, the Calvinist belief in Effectual Calling, etc. (I realize you may or may not go into what Arminianism teaches in your series). So I apologize if I was “out-of-line” and this isn’t the direction you’re heading in. At the same time, it would be great if “both sides” were accurately represented. Roger Olson has recently called for a “summit” with members from both sides (and a lot of us would like to see this! I know I would).

      Btw, Roger Olson affirms Perseverance of the Saints, as do “Classical Southern Baptists”. When I was an Arminian, we called them “one point Calvinists” (but what’s in a label)? LOL Thanks again!

    • mbaker

      Rick C.,

      I read that too. I admire Roger Olson, though I am neither a Calvinist or an Arminian.

      Yet, for a so called ‘non-essential’ doctrine in the church one would think reading any of these sites that a Christian must choose between one or the other to be redeemed.

      I, for one, am tired of the whole debate. There are many more important points of theology we need to spend our time debating upon in the church, because in my mind the emphasis on this one has become a real distraction to the real threats against the gospel coming from outside the church.

      Like missing the forest for the trees.

    • Rick C.


      I like theology and have been listening to stuff C. Michael Patton & Co. have been putting out for a few years. Most especially, when TTP (The Theology Program) and CWS (Converse With Scholars) was in Paltalk. I read this blog fairly often to keep up with ‘trends’ from this particular ‘POV” in the evangelical world. Btw, Roger Olson was a guest on CWS some time ago, as was Brad Nassif, an Eastern Orthodox theologian.

      At one time I probably thought that if one was Protestant, one ‘had’ to be either Arminian or Calvinist. In fact, I took two Bible college courses in Church History at an AG college and came away thinking the same. Non-Protestant views weren’t taught.

      However, in my studies, and partially with the ‘help’ of hearing Brad Nassif on CWS, I came to see I’m in overall agreement with the Eastern Orthodox Church as far as what Calvinists and Arminians discuss-and-debate-about. Brad Nassif did mention that the EOC and Arminians do have a lot of similarities. My primary reason for thinking like the Eastern Orthodox is two-fold:
      1) Prior to Augustine, the Early Church taught “free will” and I haven’t found evidence that what Augustine taught about soteriology existed before him.
      2) I feel the Eastern Orthodox are in agreement with what the Bible says (on soteriology in terms of free will, and not believing in the Augustinian doctrine of Original Sin, aka Total Depravity, we could possibly say).

      I definitely agree with you that Calvinism V. Arminianism can be very, very tiring and that there are divisions that shouldn’t be there. I think “What do unbelievers think about we Christians when they see these uncivilized (so-called) ‘debates’?” (among other things)….

      In any event, C. Michael w/ Sam Storms, Roger Olson, and others with differing/opposing views are on the internet. Hopefully, there will be some kind of “summit” that Olson has requested….Thanks!

    • Rick C.

      To: CMP (if you see this, no need to reply).
      Thanks for having Brad Nassif on CWS!
      You haven’t converted me to Calvinism (thus far).
      But at least you helped me to stop being an Arminian!
      Okay, off-topic, I’ll keep listening….
      Rick C-out.

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