Cottrell, Jack

Does Ephesians 1:1-11 Support Calvinism?

, posted by drwayman

The following is from Dr. Jack Cottrell. While he is neither a member of SEA or a self-declared Arminian, his thoughts on Ephesians 1 are very insightful.

QUESTION: Calvinists say that Ephesians 1:1-11 clearly establishes the absolute and all-inclusive sovereignty of God, including the unconditional predestination of the elect to salvation. How do you interpret this text?

ANSWER: A right understanding of Ephesians 1:1-11 begins with the recognition that God’s purpose for Israel was from the beginning limited to preparing for the coming of the Messiah, namely, for the incarnation of God the Logos as the human person Jesus of Nazareth. Once the Messiah came, it was God’s eternal purpose to merge all believing Israelites and all believing Gentiles into one new body called the church. This is the main point of the book of Ephesians, and it is the key to understanding the often misused passage in Ephesians 1:1-11.

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Jack Cottrell on “Whether God Has Free Will If He Can’t Sin And What This Means For Human Free Will”

, posted by SEA

Taken from http://arminiantoday.blogspot.com/2010/06/jack-cottrell-on-free-will.html

QUESTION: Many (usually Arminians) argue that without free will in a significant (libertarian) sense, i.e., the ability to choose between good and evil, human actions would not be worthy of praise or blame. Thus in order to preserve moral responsibility, human beings must have free will in the libertarian sense—the freedom of opposite moral choice. But is this consistent with the freedom of God Himself, whom we assume to be the ultimate model for freedom? The following are said to be true of God:

1. God is surely the freest being in the universe. He is free to do whatever he pleases (Psalm 115:3), and all his choices are surely praiseworthy.

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