The doctrines of grace, often known as the 5 points of calvinism are often described in the acronym: TULIP. It was through R.C. Sproul’s teachings on the doctrines of grace  that I came to embrace  Reformed theology. Although, Reformed theology is more than these 5 points, these points are often at the forefront of controversy concerning reformed teaching.

T: Total Depravity (Radical Corruption)
Teaches that apart from  Christ, sin has corrupted us in all aspects of our thinking and doing.
Scriptural References: Gen 6:5; Jer 17:5; Rom 3:10-12, Rom 8:7-8; Eph 2:1-3

U: Unconditional Election (Sovereign Election)
Teaches that God decision to elect certain people for his glory is not based on any condition or act performed or merited by those whom he has elected, but only by his sovereign choosing.
Scriptural References: John 6:37;  Rom 9:9-13,16; Eph 1:4,11; Eph 2:8-10; Titus 3:5

L: Limited Atonement (Definite Redemption)
Teaches that God designed the work of redemption with a particular view: that Christ would lay down his life for those whom the Father had given him; namely the elect.
Scriptural References: Matt. 1:21; John 6:37, 44, 65; John 10:16; Acts 11:18; Acts 13:48

I: Irresistible Grace (Effectual Grace)
Teaches that God has done the work in bringing us out from spiritual death that we may cling to Christ.
Scriptural References: Eze. 36:26-27; John 6:37, 44, 65; John 10:16; Acts 11:18; Acts 13:48; Phil. 2:11-13

P: Perseverance of the Saints (preservation of the saints)
Teaches that those whom believe in Jesus Christ will persevere till the end, not only by their own strength, but also because they have been preserved by God for salvation.
Scriptural References: John 6:44; Romans 8:29-30; Phil. 1:6

For more info on reformed theology or the doctrines of grace, visit: http://www.ligonier.org/learn/series/what_is_reformed_theology/

2 thoughts on “Doctrines of Grace”

  1. Putting Total Depravity to the test, it fails.
    1. Ezekiel 23:11; Matthew 24:12. There are levels of depravity.
    2. Romans 1:18-32. God gave up on depraved people.

    If all people are “Totally Depraved”, God gave all up to their sinful desires. Evangelism is pointless. But we are to go into all nations and preach the Gospel message, because not all people are “Totally Depraved”. The Doctrine of Grace is not Biblical. 5 points Calvinists do not believe in “Total Depravity”. If they do, they will not evangelize because God already gave up on these people.

    Paul told Timothy to have nothing to do with these people too (2 Timothy 3:1-9)

    1. Hi Zongqua,
      Thank you for your post. I don’t think you clearly understand the Reformed position on “Total Depravity.” That may be my fault as I did not exhaustively provide a definition of total depravity. However, I did provide Scriptural evidence for it. And by looking at what you have provided, I don’t see how your scriptural proofs disprove the total depravity of man. Total depravity does not mean that one is as bad as they can possibly be, without getting any worse. Rather it speaks of the corruption of sin within the individual. That sin has radically corrupted man in body and spirit so that there is a great chasm between God and man. Paul alludes to this in Ephesians 2:1-3, and Romans 3:10. Neither does total depravity lead one to assume that they’re outside God’s scope of salvation. Rather, Paul states in Ephesians 2:4 that even when we were utterly unlovable, God loved us, and saved us. Not because of anything that we did. But because God is merciful and gracious. Mercy, means that although we deserved God’s wrath because of our sin, He did not give it to us. Instead, he laid that wrath on His Son. Grace means that we did nothing to deserve God’s kindness in turning away His wrath from us (Ephesians 2:8).

      Furthermore, evangelism is not pointless. For God not only determines the end, but he also determines the means. Your response seems to presuppose that man is the one who changes hearts, but it is the Holy Spirit. Yes ministers are to preach the Gospel, but we are to do so as scattering seed everywhere. And the one who changes the heart of man is the Holy Spirit. The Spirit takes a dead man and brings him back to life (Titus 3:5).

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