1) I'll be out of blogging range until Sunday, October 8.
2) The reason I'll be out of blogging range is because I'm going to the Leadership Institute at the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Kansas City.
3) You may or may not know that almost all of John Piper's writings are avaialable online for free at www.desiringgod.org. Yesterday, I read his article What We Believe About the Five Points of Calvinism. It is a good biblical explanation and defense of the 5 points of Calvinism, which are:
T- Total Depravity
U- Unconditional Election
L- Limited Atonement
I- Irresistable Grace
P- Perseverance of the Saints
Wesley and we Methodists have never been Calvinist, but rather Arminian. An Arminian believes that Christ's atonement covers the sins of every member of the human race, and that through God's grace, we have the free will to receive the benefits of that atonement or not. I have never understood how someone could believe in limited atonement. However, I don't want to be Arminian because I have been indoctrinated with Arminianism and never seriously considered Calvinism.
I have to admit that I found Piper's defense of Calvinism challenging, and worth consideration. If you feel like reading through it and giving me your feedback I'd be interested in hearing what others thought.
PS. A practical application of this issue might be this: If a United Methodist clergy person became persuaded of Calvinist theology would he be bound to hand in his credentials?
PSS. I am not a Calvinist, but a Wesleyan Arminian.